The Unofficial Countryside by Richard Mabey

‘An exciting re-discovery for me.’ Iain Sinclair

During the early 1970s Richard Mabey explored crumbling city docks and overgrown bomb-sites, navigated inner city canals and car parks, and discovered there was scarcely a nook in our urban landscape incapable of supporting life. The Unofficial Countryside is a timely reminder of how nature flourishes against the odds, surviving in the most obscure and surprising places.

Read the full introduction by Iain Sinclair

Paperback with flaps | 216 x 156 mm | 184 pages

Cover artwork and internal illustrations by Mary Newcomb


In stock


RICHARD MABEY is the author of some thirty books, including Food for Free (1972), Gilbert White (1986), which won the Whitbread Biography Award, Whistling in the Dark: In Pursuit of the Nightingale (1993), the ground breaking Flora Britannica (1996), Beechcombings: the narratives of Trees (2007), and his memoir Nature Cure (2005), which was shortlisted for three major literary awards. He writes for The Times, Guardian and Granta, contributes frequently to BBC radio, and  has written a column in BBC Wildlife magazine since 1986. He has been awarded honorary doctorates by St Andrews and Essex universities for his contributions to nature writing and was appointed to the Civil List in 2008 for services to literature. He is Vice President of the Open Spaces Society and Patron of the John Clare Society. He lives in Norfolk, in the Waveney Valley.

Additional information

Weight350 g
Dimensions14 × 156 × 216 mm

1 review for The Unofficial Countryside by Richard Mabey

  1. Ken Worple

    The writer and environmentalist Ken Worple has posted a review which recognises the influence of Richard Mabey’s ‘pioneering study of urban and fringe nature’, a book which continues to inspire people to look at ‘the ecological delights which have found a niche in the back territories’. Read the full review at Caught by the River or read Iain Sinclair’s introduction to our edition of The Unofficial Countryside at the Guardian.

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