I read in the news (The Telegraph – Middle Earth protest as New Zealanders take to the streets over Hobbit plans) that Peter Jackson was considering moving the troubled production of Tolkien’s Hobbit out of New Zealand. Outraged Antipodeans protested with banners stating “New Zealand is Middle Earth”.
This made me smile because I consider myself a bit of a hobbit, albeit a six foot tall hobbit. Why? Well, truth be told, I’m from “the shire”, you see. So here are some well known (and some not so well known) facts about Hobbits and their creator:
- Tolkien lived in Warwickshire and the village of Sarehole provided the inspiration for Hobbiton. (BBC Coventry & Warwickshire – Tolkien’s Warwickshire connection)
- Tolkien was a fire warden during World War 2 and spoke of watching Coventry burn on the horizon (Google Books – J.R.R. Tolkien encyclopedia: scholarship and critical assessment. by Michael D. C. Drout). This provided inspiration for the fiery destructive depths of Mordor.
- Hobbits are known for their frequent meals. This is no surprise to someone from rural Warwickshire where the day’s eating opportunities can number six different meals and countless cups of tea in-between! If you don’t believe me, here’s the list:
So, seeing as I was born and bred in Warwickshire and have hairy feet, I put it to you that I’m a Hobbit!