Lorna Uglow was born in 1951 in Woodford Green.As a child she spent much of her time exploring a part of Epping Forest called Knighton Woods. Later, she lived in a house next to the ‘Wintry Woods’ of these poems. The whole of Epping For is home ro many ancient trees and wild creatures.
Lorna’s constant proximity to it, and perhaps also memories of her grandmother’s farm near Coldingham in the Scottish Borders, has contributed to her lifelong love of animals. As well as enjoying horse-riding she has always kept a bewildering variety of pets: dogs, chickens, ducks, budgerigars, a cockatoo, frogs, all kinds of fish, mice, hamsters, rabbits, tortoises and guinea pigs, to name just a few.
This passion for animals in general inspires the tales in this book. Just like real animals, the ones in these poems have their own characters. They are unpredictable and have a sense of humour – and it is this, above all, that the poems convey. Remarkably, Lorna now only has one pet, a Scottish Terrier called Hamish (pictured). But living as she does in the heart of the Essex countryside, in the small village of Matching Tye, wild animals are never very far away.
The illustrations throughout are by Peter Hunt, artist and musician. Peter lives close by Epping forest in Loughton, Essex — with his wife and two children. Having spent much of his career in the graphic art world, he is now a hill time illustrator.