Richard Trahair


Richard Trahair's Books

ISBN: 9781915122933


Parsonage and Parson: Coping with the Clergy – thirty years of eccentricity and delight

28 Sep 2022

Richard Trahair shares an insider's experience of the wide-ranging 'goings on' in a large Church of England diocese in the south of England from the 1980s.

As estate manager - Diocesan Property Secretary - for more than thirty years, he reflects on the astonishing range of characters he worked alongside, and the diverse buildings and land for which he was responsible. Richard delves into the nature of a parsonage house, its parish loyalties, and the keen controversy over selling the grand old houses and replacing them with smaller ones so that the impoverished clergy and their families can at least keep warm.

Both people and places were a heady mix of the delightful, the worthy, the curious and the downright eccentric. With encounters recounted that range from wacky and hilarious, to thought-provoking and historical, catch a glimpse into the life of a twenty-nine-year-old surveyor in a diocesan office dominated by retired military gentlemen, rattling around in a huge 15th century former city workhouse, as he grows into his role.


Richard Trahair is a retired chartered surveyor and Justice of the Peace, a church organist and one-time churchwarden, immersed with his wife Biddy in the frantic life of a small rural parish community a long way from anywhere in particular. He has written two published novels during his retirement.

ISBN: 9781915853622


The Organist and the Magistrate

28 Nov 2023

Two tales of misadventure and crime, illustrating the role of both a church organ and its player and also of a lay Justice of the Peace, drawn from the author’s experiences in both title roles.

In ‘The Organist’, a well-known elderly organist slumps into a coma while giving a recital to a packed church audience. The regular organist, a mysterious young lady, has vanished. In a plot that sweeps from a country town in England to the Rock of Gibraltar, the stakes could not be higher after nefarious plans which could lead to an international crisis are uncovered.

‘The Magistrate’ is an adventure tale of kidnap and revenge. When the Justice becomes the victim of a man who holds some kind of grudge against him, he unwisely pursues his own investigation. Contrasting characters then emerge to demonstrate the avenues open to magistrates to exercise common-sense justice while at the same time coping with the sorry state of the criminal justice system.


Richard Trahair is a retired chartered surveyor and a parish organist for more than thirty years. As Presiding Justice in the local Magistrates’ Court, he served for a quarter of a century enduring government incompetence and exercising justice and common sense alongside his colleagues. He is the author of three novels and has also published his reminiscences of managing Church property.