Ramsey author to research witch trials in Warboys for new novel

Catherine Batty

Catherine Batty - Credit: Archant

An author from Ramsey, who has already published two novels, is hoping to base one of her next projects on the story of the witch trials in Warboys.

Catherine Batty, 35, is yet to start researching the book, but will explore the history behind the trial of Alice Samuel – a woman from Huntingdonshire accused of witchcraft in the 16th century.

“This history is on our doorstep but they had witch trials all over the world,” Catherine told The Hunts Post.

“I’m interested in it anyway and I’m a complete Tudor, Elizabethan geek, but it’s a big thing that happened here. Catherine of Aragon died in Kimbolton and she was buried in Peterborough. An awful lot happened here and people don’t realise.”

In fact, a sign of a witch sits on the clock tower in Warboys, the village sign, and one used to be part of the school’s badge.

Although the idea for her novel is based on fact, Catherine hopes to add another element to the book.

“It links to my other novels really; they’re all to do with science fantasy,” she said.

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“It harks back to the sixteenth-century witch trials but it’s also set around Victoria’s Golden Jubilee, so not only does it have ancient history but recent history as well.

“It will be the sixth one I’ve written but there’ll be a lot of research with it. I want it to be as accurate as possible, and I like to do that with all my books. They have an element of reality then.”

Catherine, a civil servant, writes in her spare time and has her third and fourth novels currently on the go – part of The Chronicles of Judas series.

“It’s a massive jump from my day job. I’ve had that series in my head since 1995 and I started writing it in 2008. I was getting very frustrated with the fantasy which was being published and I thought ‘I can do better than that.’”

Her Warboys project – which she is considering naming The Last Witch of Warboys – is likely to be a standalone book though, with release estimated for 2018.

To find out more about Catherine’s work, search The Chronicles of Judas on Facebook or follow @Cat_Batty on Twitter.