A GALLERY of Malmesbury's rich history will fill the pages of a book which is to be released at the end of this month.

Malmesbury Now and Then features more than 300 photos from the town's historic past, from interior shots of the famous abbey to snaps of a 'lost pub'. Many of the photos have never been published before.

One of the most interesting stories in the book is of a fabled Red Lion pub that was never listed, but is pictured inside.

The idea for the book came from a Facebook group with the same name. The idea of the group was to share stories, photos and memories of Malmesbury.

Charles Vernon who helped put the book together said: “It’s been a pleasure helping this idea become a reality.

"We had more than 3,000 images to choose from, so as you can imagine it’s been a difficult task.

"I’m looking forward to seeing the finished book which I hope the community will enjoy.”

“Pre-orders can come in from far and wide including Europe, USA, and New Zealand, so it seems to be popular. There will only be a limited number of books printed. It looks like it’s going to be a popular Christmas present.”

Alison Cross-Jones, who came up with the idea of the book, said: “There were so many people joining and sharing memories within the Facebook group that members had the book idea. They also wanted it to do some good within the town by raising charitable funds.

“From the start the Facebook group has always been about supporting The Athelstan Museum and The Civic Trust because these two small local charities do so much to preserve the history of the town for future generations to enjoy.

“Malmesbury Now and Then currently has 3993 members and it continues to grow. I’m delighted that it’s going so well.”

The picture-filled book is being launched at 7pm on November 29 at the Julia & Hans Rausing Building, Oxford Street.

Limited tickets for the launch night are currently available from the Athelstan Museum.

All proceeds will be donated to the museum.