The Modbury Gnome
The village of Modbury, which dates back to the Domesday Book, lies in a hollow and is surrounded by the hills and ridges of the South Hams in Devon. One summer’s day, a builder was walking past a rubbish skip in the village, when he saw a cute garden gnome struggling to escape from the debris. Feeling sorry for the little fellow, he picked him up, brushed him down and placed him on a wall just outside the village, where he remained for many weeks. The gnome raised a smile from everyone who walked past him and ‘The Modbury Gnome’ became quite famous locally and was adopted by the village.
The mystery of who put the gnome on the wall became a topic of much speculation in the village. Local newspapers, radio stations and patrons of the local pub joined in the friendly guessing game. During the hot and sunny weather that summer, a caller to the local radio station suggested that the gnome would benefit by wearing a pair of sunglasses. When he heard this, the builder, aided by an accomplice, fitted the little chap with a pair of sunglasses and, of course, this only added to the mystery. Passing bus drivers even began pointing him out to their passengers and his fame started to spread.
Sadly, his fame was his undoing, and one day the Modbury Gnome was stolen. As you can imagine, the builder and the villagers were devastated by what had happened, so our builder went in search of a replacement gnome. He managed to find a fine specimen, but this time he took the precaution of fixing him in position on the wall. Everyone in the village was delighted to see the gnome back in place again.
Tragically, a few weeks later, some ‘muppet’ as the builder referred to the villain, had broken off the top half of the gnome, leaving only the gnomes legs in the cement. The locals were very sad, even with the help of the local radio station, they could not find who the culprit was – but then they didnt even know who had put the gnome there in the first place did they?
The real mystery is – who stole the Modbury Gnome?
This is an extract from our book entitled “gnomeland and introduction to the little people” which is available from our shop here.