1905 – Born on May 16th in Rushden, Northamptonshire, England. British novelist and short-story writer of high reputation and wide popularity.
1935-1941 – He became well known as a writer about the countryside and the life of the agricultural labourer with The Poacher; A House of Women; My Uncle Silas, widely enjoyed for its earthy, Rabelaisian humour; and The Beauty of the Dead and Other Stories.
– Commissioned as a writer for the Royal Air Force, as “Flying Officer X”.
1942-1943 – He gained great popularity with The Greatest People in the World and How Sleep the Brave, collections of stories that conveyed the feel of flying in wartime.
1944-1948 – Three novels published under his own name, Fair Stood the Wind for France, about a British bomber crew forced down in occupied France, and two set in Burma (now Myanmar) during the Japanese invasion, The Purple Plain and The Jacaranda Tree, earned Bates a new reputation as a novelist of power.
1954-1971 – In his postwar novels and stories Bates reached the height of his powers. The Nature of Love to A Moment in Time and The Triple Echo, he developed consistently in subtlety, depth, and strength as a novelist.
– In ‘The Darling Buds of May’ he created a realistic, lovable farm family, the Larkins.
– Colonel Julian demonstrates his range in the short story, and the autobiographical The Vanished World and The Blossoming World show that he retained his power to capture the mood of the passing moment.
1974 – Died on January 29th in Canterbury, Kent.