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Island of the Dead

Exemplar Award Winner- Winner Best anecdote for widespread use of a UPRN or USRN 2012: Northumberland County Council

UPRNs are mentioned in the Kindle novel Island of the Dead by Northumberland County Council’s IT Support Officer David Basnett.

It is a Young Adult horror novel in which the protagonist, Eve Evans, needs a place to hide that does not appear on any maps. Eve’s teacher, Professor Brown knows of a place that is kept magically hidden. The first month’s sales figures are not yet available, but the previous book topped the US Amazon free download chart in the children’s horror category.


‘I know most places in Northumberland,’ said Eve through a mouthful of steak pie. ‘Where’s this Tilwick? Are you sure you don’t mean Alnwick?’

Professor Brown tutted irritably at Eve’s rapidly expanding carpet of pastry on the car seat. ‘Be careful will you,’ he said. ‘That grease will stain the leather.’

‘Oh it’s just a bit of pastry,’ said Eve. ‘Loosen up a bit.’

‘I’ll loosen your head in a minute if you’re not careful,’ he muttered under his breath.

‘So,’ said Eve. ‘Where is it? I can’t find it on this road atlas either.’

‘Of course it’s not on any maps you stupid girl,’ he snapped. ‘It’s hidden from Ordnance Survey and it’s the one place in the country that the government UPRNs don’t reach. Now no more questions.’

They were northbound on the A1, the main road through Northumberland, for twenty minutes when Brown suddenly thumbed the indicator and pulled onto a slip road that wasn’t signposted. The tarmac ended and the road became a pothole filled farm track. A red and white Private sign went past as their speed dropped to ten miles per hour. The bouncing car woke Eve’s mother from her back seat slumber and she wound down her window to get some fresh air.

‘Err, are you sure you took the right slip road?’ asked Eve.

‘Of course I’m sure,’ snapped Brown.

‘This looks like a farm track,’ said Eve.

‘I am aware of that,’ replied Brown through gritted teeth.

‘Typical man,’ said Eve. ‘Don’t want to admit when you’re lost.’

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