Teresa Hooley

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Teresa Hooley
Born 19 Jan 1888 (1888-01-19)
Risley in Derbyshire
Died 4 April 1973 (1973-04-05)
Derby, Derbyshire

Teresa Hooley (1888–1973), known mostly for a war poem A War Film about World War I, was a pseudonym of Mrs. F. H. Butler. This much information is given in Modern Poetry 1922-1934 by Maurice Wollman;[1] who adds some further biographical information that is hard to check. She was born in Risley, Derbyshire, and (accordingly to a letter from her sold at auction recently) she lived at Goldenbrook Farm in Risley at some point during her life. Teresa Mary Hooley's early life was spent at Risley Lodge, the home of her father Terah Hooley (d1927), a successful lace manufacturer who built Springfield Mill at Sandiacre, and her mother Mary (d1928), his second wife. She made her name before the Great War, writing poems in the Daily Mirror alongside Edith Sitwell - not an admirer of her work. Her work was published in a number of collections in the 1920s and 1930s but has largely fallen out of fashion. She had two full brothers who survived childhood. Of these the younger, Basil, born in 1893, was decorated in the Great War but died in the 1918 flu pandemic. Her much older half-brother was the financier Ernest Terah Hooley of Risley Hall with whom she maintained a civil if frosty relationship. Hooley married Frank H. Butler in May 1920 at Risley Church. They had a son but the marriage did not survive. In later life some found her a formidable presence.

A War Film[edit]

Hooley's poem A War Film describes the experience of seeing documentary footage of World War I, and refers to the Retreat from Mons, after one of the great battles of the Great War.

Although this is Hooley's most well known poem little is known about it, and its date has been debated in online fora. It has been assumed the poem was inspired by watching documentary footage about World War I. The earliest documentary was The Battle of the Somme (1916), but it is unlikely that a contemporary writer would confuse the Battle of the Somme and the Retreat from Mons. It is therefore reasonable to conjecture that the 1926 film, Mons, was the most probable source. The fact that the poem can be found in Songs of all Seasons (published 1927) could be seen to bear this hypothesis out.


  • Gloom and Gleam (1913, A.C. Fifield)
  • Twenty-Nine Lyrics (1924, Cape)
  • Collected Poems (1926, Cape)
  • Songs of all Seasons (1927, Cape)
  • Songs of the Open: Collected Poems (1928)
  • Eve and other Poems (1930, Cape)
  • New Poems (1933)
  • Orchestra (1935)
  • The Singing Heart (1945, Frederick Muller Ltd.) Hardback, 87pp
    (poems mostly on the subject of World War II)
  • Selected Poems (1947, Cape)
  • Wintergreen (1959, A J Chapple) 32pp

other collections of poems (publication dates unknown):

  • A Country Year


  1. ^ Modern Poetry 1922-1934 by Maurice Wollman

External links[edit]