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. During the war, she presumably had an interest in Spiritualism, since her poem "Christ of the Night' appeared in the Occult Review in December 1915, on p. 342. 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 Terah Hooley, 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
  • "How to survive" (1920, cape)

other collections of poems (publication dates unknown):

  • A Country Year

Basil Terah Hooley[edit]

Basil Terah Hooley
Born 8 Jun 1892 (1892-06-08)
Risley, Derbyshire
Died 28 Oct 1918 (1918-10-29)
Risley Lodge, Derby, Derbyshire
Spouse(s) Emily Dorothy Thirlby
Parent(s) Terah and Mary Eliza Swaffield (2)[2]

Basil Terah Hooley (1892–1918), [1] was born in Risley, Derby, on the 8th June 1892. He was commissioned in April 1915, later promoted to Lieutenant and to Major.[3] On 23 June 1915 he married Emily Dorothy Thirlby of Risley, at All Saints church, Risley. A member of the University College Nottingham OTC, Major Hooley served with the 7th Bn Sherwood Foresters (Notts & Derby Regiment),[4] and was a tank commander in the Battles of Amiens on 18 August 1918.

Basil Hooley died at the age of twenty-six of pneumonia following influenza, while home on leave on 28 October 1918 .[3] He was awarded the Military Medal for conspicuous gallantry in November 1918.[5] A memorial window to Major Basil Terah Hooley M.C., was placed in the north aisle of All Saints Church in Risley.


  1. ^ Modern Poetry 1922-1934 by Maurice Wollman
  2. ^ "Terah Hooley", Grace's Guide to British Industrial History
  3. ^ a b MacDonald, Alan (2008). A Lack of Offensive Spirit?: The 46th (North Midland) Division at Gommecourt, 1st July 1916. Iona Books. p. 378 (footnote iii). ISBN 978-0955811906. Retrieved 6 February 2016. 
  4. ^ Roll of Honour, Nottingham county Council
  5. ^ "4134 SUPPLEMENT TO THE EDINBURGH GAZETTE, November 11, 1918" (PDF). The Gazette. 11 November 1918. Retrieved 6 February 2016. 

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