The Lost Films

Dr Derek J Ripley

Derek J Ripley’s unrivalled passion for local history dates back longer than he can remember.  Born in Preston, he has lived at various times in most places in the North West.  He now lives in Birkenhead and commutes daily to his job in Morecambe, where he worked as a librarian until he was recently made redundant following local government cutbacks. In 2012, his first book Forgotten Lancashire & Parts of Cheshire and the Wirral cemented his reputation as the ‘king of fact-free history’ - although he was dismayed when it was dismissed by Lancashire Life magazine as 'comic genius' and when the Wigan Observer said there were 'a dozen laughs a page,' even if a dozen five star reviewers on Amazon seem to agree.

Derek has published widely on local history matters, earning him the soubriquet ‘Mister History’ in his local pub, where he is vice-captain of the quiz team.  When he is not reading about or writing local history, Derek likes to unwind with a game of bowls and in 2002, came third in the North West Lancashire Crown Green Bowls Championships.  A keen cyclist and camper, Derek is a lover of the great outdoors and has an ambition to write a series of travel guides to some of the places sometimes overlooked by traditional tourist books.  Derek is passionate about books.  His favourite novelist is Patricia Highsmith and his favourite film is The Talented Mr. Ripley.

Derek is a great fan of  bookshops — particularly when they champion local history and have a good café. Derek likes nothing better than sitting down in a bookshop with a nice café latte and a couple of good history books.  He is an avid listener — and sometime contributor to — local radio.

Married to Nataya whom he met at a local history convention in Bangkok in 2008, he is already hard at work on his next project, The Complete And Utter Book of Tripe, due for publication later in 2013. 


The Lost Films cover
The Lost Films of 20th Century Spatchcock is published by TMB Books and tells the story of the Spatchcock studios between 1921 and 2004, with details of dozens of 'lost films' that have been discovered by celebrated local librarian, Dr Derek J Ripley.

Acclaimed broadcaster Andy Kershaw has described Dr Ripley’s work as “the definitive appreciation of Spatchcock!” and advises that “Anyone who has managed to get through
From Here To Maternity or Wendy Does Wigan will want - and need - this book."

Highlights include the first extended essay on the Lancashire Office of Information's public information films, including Always Wear A Hat! and How To Eat Tripe, alongside the first published analysis of Spatchcock's blue movie period in a chapter on The Golden Age of Filth.  Over 200 pages of facts and details about a hitherto forgotten north west film studio.  
Derek J Ripley
Dr Derek J Ripley

Praise for Dr Ripley's first publication, Forgotten Lancashire:

"Comic genius"
Lancashire Life

"A dozen laughs a page"
Wigan Observer

© Copyright 2012  LEB Ltd T/A The Lost Films of 20th Century Spatchcock