Maureen's first book, Escape to Provence, published in 2008 and re-printed in 2009, is the result of 8 years of extensive research. A paperback of 248 pages, including approximately 40 illustrations & photographs, it is the true story of Lady Winifred Fortescue and Elisabeth Starr, two remarkable women and their quest for a new life in an idyllic Provence of the early 1900s. An evocative description of how the Second World War brought both selfless courage and tragedy and would change their lives for ever. You can now read the Introduction and Chapter 1 of Escape to Provence by clicking here.
Maureen Emerson, from an Irish-Austrian background, grew up in London - for which she is eternally grateful. She brought up her family in North Africa, Lebanon, Dallas and Singapore, before settling in Provence for twenty-two years. There she worked as a local co-ordinator for CBS and NBC at media festivals in Cannes. During her years in Provence Maureen became enthralled with the stories of those expatriates who lived on the Riviera in the 1920s and 1930s and how the Second World War affected their lives. Her second book on the subject is now in progress. While still harbouring a strong affection for Provence, Maureen has now settled in Sussex with her husband. Her book, Escape to Provence, is published by Chapter & Verse Books and is available on Kindle.
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ESCAPE TO PROVENCE
PROJECTS & RESEARCH
In the context of Maureen's new project on the personalities of the Riviera in the 1920s and 30's, here is a wonderful short film of the area, shot in 1937, before the war changed everything.
If you cannot see this video click here to download Adobe Flash Player - free.
Hélène Vagliano was active in the French resistance. Her family had moved from Ascot in Berkshire to Cannes in the south of France in the 1920's. The full and very moving story of this incredibly brave young woman who was tortured and murdered by the Gestapo has been completed and the article accepted by the Imperial War Museum. Other projects include Sir John Fortescue, Royal Librarian and Author of the History of the British Army and 'Be Ill in Your Own Language', the Story of the Anglo-American Hospital of Cannes. Use the links to select a subject.