A Very Strange Knight
When eight-year-old Bobby, wins the amazing prize of a month at an exclusive summer school in a manor house in the country, he has no idea that all his secret dreams are about to come true. The prize includes a friend and he chooses to take his little sister along with him.
The manor belongs to the Greyleigh Family whose ancestor, Sir Walter, was a famous Knight. More
After the sudden death of his father, eight-year-old Bobby has to move with his mother and six-year- old sister from a house in the country to the inner city. What he first imagines as an adventure soon turns into a nightmare as he encounters the many problems of a run-down council estate. His nights are now punctuated by sound of fighting in the street and the sirens of police cars. School is also a problem as he’s the target of the bullies who unmercifully tease him about his posh accent.
When he feels he can no longer bear it a miracle happens in the form of an essay competition. The winner and a friend are to be awarded the prize of the whole month of August at an exclusive summer school in a manor house in the country.
The manor belongs to the Greyleigh Family whose ancestor, Sir Walter, was a famous Knight. His descendents set up a trust whereby twenty underprivileged children are awarded a month of luxury living based on their reason for wanting to be there, and Bobby has many reasons. So he’s delighted when he wins and sets off with his little sister on what he believes will be the adventure of a lifetime, but, like most of Bobby’s dreams this one too starts to go wrong.
The house is exactly as he imagined it to be, and the suit of armour that once belonged to Sir Walter and now standing proud in the great hall, fascinates him, but there other things within the manor that are not so nice. Even though the present Lord Richard is kind to him, the butler Mr Roberts and housekeeper Mrs Wilson willing allies, it’s the other children who make life difficult for him. The rich boys and girls, whose parents paid a fortune to send their children to this exclusive school, resent anyone unlike them and not wearing the latest in fashion and trainers. So Bobby goes from one set of bullies to another.
On his first night in the dormitory he cuddles beneath the bedcovers feeling very alone until he hears a familiar and frightening sound from deep within the house-glass breaking. Sure that there is trouble brewing; he creeps down the stairs to confront the burglar, only to encounter a more sinister and amazing sight. The would-be housebreaker has been chased away and clanking slowly along the corridor, sword raised, is the suit of armour. After a chilling start, Bobby manages to explain to the Knight that he’s not the enemy and the two begin to talk. He learns how Sir Walter so loved his home that even after his death he couldn’t bear to leave it, and now haunts the place. The two become friends and Sir Walter helps Bobby through a series of adventures and dangers, when the rich children play tricks on him and his schoolmates.
When the month is almost up and the children must return home both Bobby and Sir Walter are heartbroken, until they hear Mrs Wilson, the housekeeper, is retiring. Sir Walter tells Bobby to speak to Sir Richard about the job for his mother. When Sir Richards agrees to an interview, Bobby rings his mother, who’s delighted and promises to call next day. The following morning Bobby stands next to Sir Walter in the great hall and listens to the murmur of the adults voices in the library as his mother speaks to Sir Richard. After what seems like forever the door opens. His mother smiling and some of her lost sparkle has come back as she explains she has got the job and they’ll be living in a cottage in the grounds of the manor. She stops for a moment to speak to Sir Richard, who is a widower and, whose eyes have lost some of their sadness. But what no one notices is when Bobby slipped his hand into the glove of the suit of armour and squeezed down tight on the cold metal, the fingers squeezed back.