Retired Lancaster teachers become published authors

Lancaster writers Anne and Peter Randell

Lancaster writers Anne and Peter Randell

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Two retired schoolteachers turned to writing books and have now both become published authors.

Anne Randell was deputy head at Scotforth St Paul’s Primary School, after spending 30 years as a teacher, while her husband Peter taught history at Queen Elizabeth School in Kirkby Lonsdale before becoming deputy head.

“Peter has always been quite obsessed with history,” Anne said.

“He grew up in Bruton, a small market town in Somerset, and has spent many years researching its history, particularly from 1400.”

Peter, now 67, retired in 2005 and has gone on to have six academic history books published on the subject.

Anne, meanwhile, grew up in Manchester.

The couple both taught in Slough, before moving to Carnforth more than 30 years ago and then to Bowerham.

They have two children, a son Chris, who is also a deputy head near Reading, and daughter Sarah, who lives locally.

Anne retired in 2010, and finally found time to ingulge her love of writing.

“When I was at school I used to love writing for literacy lessons,” the 66-year-old said.

“When I was older I still loved it but I just didn’t feel like I had the time for it.

“I did a couple of Open University courses when I retired.

“My first book started as a short story, but ended up becoming a novel.

“I had a couple of travel articles published, and then I just started writing short stories and the first novel just developed from there.”

Anne’s two books – Next Time It Will Be Perfect and Look Right, Look Left, Look Dead – both took the form of crime novels.

The second was partly set in Statesville, North Carolina, where she spent a year teaching in an elementary school in 2002/03.

“It’s not a speedy process, but I was really determined to see it through from beginning to end,” Anne said.

“I am already thinking about my third novel now, but it won’t be a crime one this time.

“I just get lost in it; it’s a wonderful past-time.”