Hippos, Hairpins and High Button Boots

From: £5.99 for the download version

Based onTravels in West Africa’  by Mary Kingsley, this is the account of a Victorian lady’s journeys up the rivers of West Africa in the 1890s.

Read by Philippa Urquhart.

Adapted by Nick McCarty.

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SKU: CC007 Categories: ,

Product Description

To hear some audio clips from this book click on the players below:

Clip 1:

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Mary Kingsley was born in 1862. She was trapped by the conventions of her time until her parents died but then, with an annual income of £500, she was free to travel and in 1893 went to Africa. Travelling alone in small steamers and native canoes, which she learned to handle, she went deep into the jungles, learning about the spiritual lives of the African tribes and collecting specimens of fish for the British Museum. Her books were popular, funny and contentious and her views on missionaries were trenchant. After publishing her first book Mary Kingsley returned to West Africa. During the Boer War she worked in the military hospitals in South Africa where she died of typhus.

Philippa Urquhart has been a member of The Royal Shakespeare Company and the National Theatre. She has worked extensively in Repertory Theatres across England and Scotland, and has appeared in London’s West End. Her many TV credits include Lillian Cartland in Tenko and Miss Briggs in Vanity Fair, for the BBC. Films include Laughter In The Dark, and Children of Men. Her one woman show The Turn Of The Screw, adapted from the famous ghost story by Henry James, continues to tour successfully across the UK and worldwide.

Nick McCarty has been a professional writer for forty years and has written for television shows such as Bergerac, The Onedin Line, The Six Wives of Henry VIII, Z-Cars and General Hospital. He has also written award-winning radio drama adaptations including A Tale of Two Cities, Dan DareJekyll and Hyde, Hard Times and Dracula as well as many original plays for both the BBC and Commercial Radio.

Additional Information

Weight .12 kg

80 minutes

Original Author

Mary Kingsley

Music and Musicians

The drums are played by children from the Kakua Primary School, Sierra Leone

Download Size

55.5 MB

Download Format



978 0955 1394 68

1 review for Hippos, Hairpins and High Button Boots

  1. (verified owner):

    “You long to turn the clock back and see Africa as she did, unspoilt. A small but perfectly formed audio that badly needs a sequel.”
    Sue Arnold – The Guardian

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