Patrick Reginald Chalmers was born in 1872, in Ireland. He worked as a banker, however is best known as a writer, encompassing various topics such as field sports (all sorts of hunting with hounds), deerstalking and horse racing. Chalmers also wrote well received biographies of Kenneth Graham, the Scottish author most famous for The Wind in the Willows, and J. M. Barrie, another Scottish author and dramatist, best remembered today as the creator of Peter Pan. Chalmers' first book, dedicated to his own writing, was Green Days and Blue Days (1912), followed by A Peck of Malt (1915).
As well as his substantial fictional and non-fictional oeuvre, Chalmers contributed to Punch, or the London Charivari, a highly influential British weekly magazine of humour and satire, established in 1841 by Henry Mayhew and engraver Ebenezer Landells. He also wrote for The Field, the world's oldest country and field sports magazine, having been published continuously since 1853. Chalmers used his expertise in outdoor pursuits to win a commission to edit the hunting diaries of Edward VIII, when he was the Prince of Wales. The then Prince was an enthusiastic hunter, making the task a mammoth undertaking for an already over-employed writer.
Chalmers also wrote much poetry, focusing on day-to-day Irish life, as well as hunting, fishing, cats and dogs. He died in 1942, at the age of seventy. As an interesting aside, a line from Chalmers' poem, 'Roundabouts and Swings', has now (in reversed form) passed into common parlance - although the origin is often no longer remembered.
"An' a lurcher wise as Solomon an' lean as fiddle-strings
Was joggin' in the dust along 'is roundabouts and swings."