From Shangri- La to the bench

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A FORMER Wakefield Trinity Wildcats player has penned his first novel.

Dave Sampson, who signed for the club back in 1963, is no stranger to writing having already written an autobiographical trilogy.

But Sally’s Bench is his first stab at fiction, which the 68-year-old said it is based on a very true story.

Described on Amazon as a “gripping tale of murder, intrigue and theft on a grand scale” the book tells the tale of a man who loses his wife and dedicates a bench in her memory at the seaside, which is where he meets the new love of his life. She then helps him survive persecution by an insolvency practitioner and a publican.

Mr Sampson, of Lee Moor, Stanley, said writing has helped him get over depression, and his only regret is that he didn’t put pen to paper sooner. He said: “I am very proud of my first novel. It is the greatest thing I have ever done, and there are plenty more where it came from.”

Mr Sampson wrote his first book and autobiography, Fast Lane to Shangri-La back in 2001, and his second, the story of his son Dean, who made more than 400 appearances for Castleford Tigers, called My Shangri-La, followed soon after. The last in the trilogy, Dark Side of Shangri-La, was published in October

The cover of Sally’s Bench features Mr Sampson’s niece Denise Ramsden, who competed as a sprinter in the 1976 Montreal Olympics, but sadly died of cancer at the age of 51.

The book costs £3.08p to download from Amazon and 50p will go to cancer charities.