A WELL-known local farmer has found himself in the literary spotlight after turning his hand to writing and penning his first book.

John Bishop, who has lived in Colwall all his life, comes from an old farming family and is a direct descendant of the eponymous ‘Stinking Bishop’ of cheese fame.

Entitled Old Rustic - Rural Ruminations from Herefordshire, his book is described as a “collection of pertinent observations on rural life in the 21st century” and is illustrated with original cartoons and line drawings.

Many of his musings were originally penned for his local parish magazine, the Colwall Clock. However the publication of the book, by Malvern firm Aspect Design, has catapulted them into a much wider spotlight.

He said: “The response has been incredible, people seem to have really taken to it. I’ve already sold 150 copies and it hasn’t even been officially launched yet. I’ve been interviewed by all sorts of people and this week I was even asked to appear and sign copies at a literary festival.”

He hopes his writings provide a link to village life and goings on in farming and the countryside.

“To a certain degree it was born out of frustration that the country life is sometimes forgotten and it seemed a good way of getting that message across. Being able to put pen to paper on the subject was quite a joy.”

All proceeds from the book are being shared between forces charity Help for Heroes and St James the Great church, in Colwall.

And there is good news for fans of Mr Bishop’s tales, as a second collection of articles are already being lined up and should be published within the next 12 months.

His first effort will be available from local bookstores or online from Aspect’s amazon store at a m a z o n . c o . u k / s h o p s / a s p e c t design.