William John Burley - crime writer, best known for his books featuring the detective Charles Wycliffe, basis of the popular Wycliffe television series

William John Burley

Burley was born on 1 August 1914 in Falmouth, Cornwall.

Before he began writing, he was employed in senior management with various gas companies, before giving it up after the Second World War when he obtained a scholarship to study zoology at Balliol College, Oxford.

After obtaining an honours degree he became a teacher.

Appointed head of biology, first at Richmond & East Sheen County Grammar School in 1953, then at Newquay Grammar School in 1955, he was well established as a writer by the time he retired at the age of 60 in 1974.

He died at his home in Holywell, Cornwall, on 15 November 2002.  

This article has been kindly provided by Kernow Matters to Us and is part of the series on Famous Folk of Kernow (Cornwall).