Ivybridge, South Brent, and their surrounding villages and hamlets, occupy that part of South Devon which borders the outskirts of Plymouth to the west, and the southern slopes of Dartmoor to the north. Now the most heavily populated town between Plymouth and the Torbay district, Ivybridge has developed considerably from the small village it was at the start of the twentieth century, becoming a town in 1977. About four miles away, the old market centre of South Brent has seen only minor changes over the years and its character remains essentially unaltered, though it too has increased greatly in size through the development of recent housing estates on its borders. This collection of images, in some cases dating back to the late nineteenth century, complemented by contemporary photographs, offers an absorbing look into the region's past and present.
John Van der Kiste was born in Wendover, Buckinghamshire. He has published over thirty books, including royal and historical biography, local history, true crime, music and fiction. He has contributed to the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography and Guinness Rockopedia, articles and reviews to various national and local journals and websites and booklet notes for CDs. He was a consultant for the BBC TV documentary The King, the Kaiser and the Tsar, (first shown in 2003). He lives in Devon.