Mov­ing trib­utes to Se­cret Fairy artist

Il­lus­tra­tor died four days after her wed­ding

Buckinghamshire Advertiser - - NEWS - By Jo-Anne Rowney jo-anne.rowney@trin­i­tymir­ror.com

A WORLD fa­mous chil­dren’s au­thor and il­lus­tra­tor has died four days after get­ting mar­ried.

Penny Dann, who grew up in Vine Road, Stoke Po­ges, died on Satur­day, De­cem­ber 20, aged 50, after a bat­tle with can­cer.

Four days ear­lier she had mar­ried part­ner of 11 years, graphic artist Tom Sanderson, at the Martlets Hospice in Hove, where she was stay­ing.

Her par­ents have spo­ken proudly of her achieve­ments.

Mother Jill Dann, from Frame­wood Road, Stoke Po­ges, said: “When she was two years old she loved to sit and draw, cut and colour.” Miss Dann il­lus­trated an­tholo­gies, early read­ers, fairy­tales and po­etry col­lec­tions, and most re­cently il­lus­trated Polly Par­rot Picks a Pi­rate, re­leased in Septem­ber.

She also cre­ated The Se­cret Fairy se­ries, in the 1990s and early 2000s, which sold more than a mil­lion copies.

Her ca­reer be­gan more than 30 years ago when she won a place at Brighton Art Col­lege where her tu­tor was Ray­mond Briggs – cre­ator of The Snow­man.

He was so im­pressed with her work he helped her get a pub­lisher for her first chil­dren’s book, One for the Pot.

She also il­lus­trated Mak­ing Magic for ma­gi­cian Fay Presto, the An­i­mals Bed­time Book, Read Me a Story, Please and Too Many Tick­les.

The lat­ter fea­tured on CBee­bies just be­fore Christ­mas, read by ac­tress Lisa Ri­ley.

Miss Dann had more than 250 books pub­lished.

Fa­ther Ju­lian Dann has spo­ken about his early fears over her ca­reer choice and re­called how he ad­vised her to take A-lev­els. He said: “She agreed to take A-lev­els but when I fi­nally learned what sub­jects she had cho­sen, they turned out to be art and etch­ing. She knew ex­actly what she was go­ing to do.”

Miss Dann’s fu­neral takes place at the Downs Cre­ma­to­rium, in Bear Road, Brighton BN2 3PL, on Wed­nes­day at 1pm.

Con­trib­uted

MAK­ING MAGIC: Trib­utes have been paid to Penny Dann, the chil­dren's au­thor and il­lus­tra­tor who died from can­cer four days after mar­ry­ing her long-term part­ner

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