Author and Romantic Novelists’ Association chair Eileen Ramsay shares with us her memories of Lucilla Andrews.
In the spring of 2007, Jenny Haddon, the then Chair of the RNA, asked me to arrange a special lunch in Scotland as the committee had decided to honour with Lifetime Achievement awards three superb Scottish writers, Lady Mary Stewart, Rosamunde Pilcher and Lucilla Andrews. I had read everything Mary Stewart had ever published and am privileged to know Rosamunde personally, but I did not know Mrs Andrews and, in fact, until Jenny asked me to help out, I had never heard of her.
I telephoned Lucilla and we chatted and although it was already obvious that she was ill, she was informative and funny and very friendly. I confessed that I had not yet read any of her books and she laughed and said, ‘Don’t worry, I haven’t read any of yours either.’ Unfortunately we never met but we rang each other every few days and chatted and laughed and discussed the luncheon which she would have enjoyed so much. She knew how ill she was and asked me to take care of her papers and, if possible, find a good home for them. They stayed safely in my soldier son’s bedroom for several years until eventually, having tried almost every major library in Great Britain, the wonderful librarians at The new Glasgow Women’s Library offered them a home which I accepted and I do encourage anyone who can make the journey to visit them there.
Jenny Haddon and I were guests at Lucilla’s memorial service in Edinburgh where we met her family. I am absolutely delighted that we are all still in touch.
Eileen has since read and enjoyed many of Lucilla’s books. You can read her reviews here.