A DAUGHTER is continuing her late father’s life work at a new shop in Camelsdale.

Middleton Press director Deborah Esher is the daughter of prolific author Vic Mitchell, and has relocated 40 years of his work to Camelsdale from a former site in Midhurst.

Vic, who formed Middleton Press in 1981, penned 342 historical railway albums himself and assisted other authors to write a further 323.

He unveiled a blue plaque at Haslemere station in 2019 to mark the 160th anniversary of the railway coming to the town, and was the founder of the Festiniog Railways Society in Wales, which was the first railway revival project in the UK.

Deborah now runs Middleton Press with her husband Ray Esher, who is a retired Haslemere fireman.

The Camelsdale shop is holding an open day, which will celebrate Middleton Press’ 40th anniversary, from 10.30am to 4pm on Saturday, October 16.

Deborah said: "When my father passed away in January we were thinking what to do.

"We’ve lived in Haslemere for 16 years. We’ve made the move to Camelsdale as when we were at Midhurst we never had space for people to visit us. We are holding the open day to introduce ourselves to local people."

Deborah is keen to establish links with the community and support other businesses.

She said: "We want to work with the community and bring business to Camelsdale. The tea shop is next door to us, so people can have tea there."

Vic was a dentist before he formed Middleton Press, and the business quickly grew after he had written his first book with Keith Smith.

"Vic and Keith finished their first book and approached publishers, but they weren’t interested, so my father published it himself," said Deborah.

"It then all grew at such a fast rate my father gave up dentistry and focused on his life passion of railways.

"He is a hard act to follow, but we will do our best. We have a good support network of authors as my father was well-known in the railway world.

"When my father unveiled the plaque at Haslemere station it showed how respected he is in the railway world."

Anyone who would like more information about Middleton Press should visit the website at www.middletonpress.co.uk