Cllr Phil Whitmarsh greets old friends whilst signing his new book.

Cllr Phil Whitmarsh greets old friends whilst signing his new book.


We were privileged to host a book signing to launch a new book by former mayor of Frome Philip Whitmarsh.

The book, “I’m not prepared to accept that! – My Tussle with Polio”, details his battle against disability after contracting polio as a child. The story recalls the fateful day he fell over in his garden, aged four, and could not get up again, and charts the years of treatment and hospitalisation that followed.

Years of missed education saw him consigned to the dunces’ class, prey to the school bullies, but he fought back – sometimes literally – and, thanks to a life-changing comment from a sympathetic teacher, ended up with academic success and an award for outstanding achievement.

His refusal to accept second-best saw him achieve success in a range of different careers before setting up his own business and becoming mayor of his home town.

Now he has achieved another long-standing ambition – to set it all down as an inspiration to others, and proof that it’s not the hand that life deals you that counts, but the way that you play it.