The Minack Chronicles

Derek & Jeannie Tangye

Derek Alan Trevithick Tangye

Derek was born 29th February 1912 at Braham Gardens, London to Richard Trevithick Gilberstone  Tangye and Sophie Elizabeth Frieda Kidman. Derek's grandfather Sir Richard Tangye was one of three brothers who invented the Tangye Jack which is still in use today.
He was one of three children, having two older brothers. Colin and Nigel Tangye. All three children served in the Armed Forces during World War 2. Derek's father, Nigel as well Derek all served in the Intelligence section. 
Derek was a journalist and reporter and worked for several newspapers before he set off on his world tour and wrote his first book Time was Mine. It was through this book he met and then married Jeannie. Coincidentally, they had been working for the same newspaper for a very short while and never met at that time.
Derek died at Dorminack,  on the evening of 26th October 1996.

Derek's Books

A Gull on the Roof

For several years Derek and Jeannie contemplated leaving London and their glamourous life. Until one holiday saw that journey began with the moment they saw the cottage from a clifftop walk. 

A Cat in the Window

Monty, with true feline patience broke down the barriers of Derek's anti-cat view, piece by piece. From city cat to country cat Monty adapted and ensured Derek did so too.

A Drake at the Door

Life on a flower farm, the arrival of Jane and Shelagh; the story of their lives and the arrival of Boris the Muscovy Drake.  

A Donkey in the Meadow

Always wanted a Donkey? Jeannie got one - plus one 'free.' But how can you have a holiday with the responsibility of animals that need looking after while you're away?

When the Winds Blow

It isn't all rose round the door! Storms and seasonal weather can play havoc with any plans and hopes. Life is full of roller coasters, and precious moments come when we least expect. Some are too short.

The Ambrose Rock

The legacy is 'born' with Jeannie's naming of places that we have come to cherish. Oliver land and Ambrose Rock.

A Quiet Year

A year in the life of Fred and Penny. Reflections of moments in time; Valentine cards; God and creation; weeds versus flowers.

The Cherry Tree

Cherry's arrives and must pass her exams! How will Ambrose cope?
These are the last illustrations to be drawn by Jeannie. Following the book it should have been Jeannie's year to do what she wanted.

Jeannie -  A Love Story

A tribute to Jeannie. Following Jeannie's death, Derek received over 7000 letters from readers who had come to know and love her as the heroine of his biographical Minack Chronicles. As he considers Jeannie's qualities, his tone is reflective; pride tinged with sadness as he describes her unfailing bravery through her final illness.

The Evening Gull

It is both a celebration of the beauties of Cornwall and a tribute to Jeannie.  It was Jeannie Tangye's wish to preserve Minack for future generations to enjoy, and in this book Derek describes his efforts to fulfill that wish, while struggling to cope with bereavement and loneliness.

The World of Minack

A celebration of The Minack Chronicles  featuring, from 16 books a selection of favourite passages, many chosen by readers. Beautiful photos and Jeannie's drawings, some of which appear for the first time.

Monty's Leap

The little stream known as Monty's Leap has become a symbol for those who contemplate changing the course of their lives. It mirrors the leap forward taken by Derek and Jeannie, when they decided to leave their glamorous lives in London, for an isolated cottage in Cornwall, called Minack, accompanied by their cat Monty. 

Pre- Minack Books

Time was Mine

Derek's first book, following his world tour prior to World War 2. His thoughts on Marcel Proust who greatly influences Derek's perspective of life. His time on a South Sea island without which he might never have escaped the 'rat race'.

One King

The history, geography, politics, exports & economics of all the Dominions and Colonies of the British Empire as they were in the 1940's. Derek's thoughtful and well studied survey helps better understand the British Empire. 

Went the Day Well

Tributes to men and women who died for freedom when Britain stood alone in the first two years of the Second World War. Originally published in 1942, reissued for the 50th anniversary of VE day. 42 true stories, from a Naval VC to a local civilian volunteer.