Harper Adams in Edgmond, Shropshire, was the venue for this year’s excellent RNA conference, and the perfect ambiance it proved to be.

Before the conference proper began, RNA members gave talks and held workshops in the Wellington Library on the Thursday, and on the Friday morning, there was a highly successful ‘Love of the Past’, meet-the-author and book fair event at Blists Hill in the Victorian Town. To give you a flavour of the occasion, I’ve captured some of the magnificent costumes worn by the historical authors who participated in the event.

Freda Lightfoot

Me, preparing for the Blists Hill extravaganza

Christina Courtenay


Kate Johnson

Liesel Schwarz

Kate Johnson, Liesel Schwarz



Louise Allen

Nicola Cornick

Romy Gemmell, Louise Allen



Jenny Barden

Anne Stenhouse

Juliet Greenwood


Lynne Connolly

Jenny Harper

Jacqueline Farrell


Jean Fullerton

Denise Barnes

Alison Morton, Jacqueline Farrell




And finally from Blists Hill, no photographic record of an RNA event is complete without at least one photograph of a pair of shoes …


My boots


Moving on  to the first day of the conference …

Getting together after the panel

Christina Courtenay, Chair of the RNA, and Jan Jones, Conference Organiser, welcome the delegates

Lizzie Lane, Judy Astley, Sue Moorcroft, Janey Fraser, Charlotte Foreman. Panel for the topic: ‘Reviews Revealed’


Christina Courtenay, Liesel Schwarz

Elizabeth Cooper, Anita Chapman

Carol McGrath, Charlotte Betts


Jen Gilroy

Alison Knight


Lynne Connolly, Liam Livings, Jan Jones



What better thing to do on a hot summer evening than gather together on the grass outside one of the houses in which we were staying. After dinner on the Friday evening, we did just that.

Alison May, Janet Gover, Lyn Vernham (MD, Choc Lit), Kate Johnson, Sue Moorcroft, Margaret Kaine

Melanie Hudson, Jane Lovering, Sarah Callejo, Rhoda Baxter, Laura E. James,
Alison May, Janet Gover












Val Williamson, Rachel Brimble, Alison Knight, Christina Courtenay

Henriette Gyland, Alison Morton, Val Williamson, Rachel Brimble










Erica Hayes, Melanie Hudson, Jane Lovering

Liesel Schwarz, Jane Lovering, Robert Fanshaw

Celia Anderson, Vanessa Savage, Lucie Wheeler, Catherine Miller, Simon Whaley


Now on to some of the talks I attended.


Eileen Dickson, Jen Gilroy, Julie Roberts

Checking the locations for the various talks and workshops

Nikki Logan, President of the RWA, discusses how the body reacts when reading


Matt Bates, Fiction Buyer for WH Smith Travel, and Richard Lee, Founder of the HNS, talk about getting books into retail outlets

Katie Fforde, Christina Courtenay, Jenny Barden (who organised the conference programme), Richard Lee, Nikki Logan discuss the Future for Romantic Fiction

Hazel Gaynor




Alison Baverstock, sharing her research into self-publishing


Ian Skillicorn tells the delegates everything they need to know about self-publishing their books

Phillipa Ashley & Nell Dixon discuss writing a series or set of linked books





And yes, there was a lot of gathering

Gathering for the Gala Dinner

Still more gathering



Denise Barnes, Jean Fullerton, Me

Alison May, Janet Gover, Denise Barnes, Jean Fullerton

Alison Morton, April Hardy, Sue MacKender, Eilidh McGinness


Janice Preston, winner of the Elizabeth Goudge Trophy

Denise Barnes, Alison Morton

Pia Fenton (Christina Courtenay), Chair of the RNA, with Jan Jones, announcing winner of the Elizabeth Goudge Trophy


Janie Millman, winner of the Katie Fforde Bursary

Katie Fforde, announcing the winner of the Katie Fforde Bursary


Sue Moorcroft, Jan Jones, Pia Fenton




The evening draws to an end  …

Talli Roland

Liam Livings

Sarah Callejo, Rhoda Baxter, Me




For those who stayed on, the last afternoon begins…

On the Sunday Sofa. Jane Wenham-Jones with Janie Millman, Christina Courtenay, Katie Fforde, Jo Thomas

… with necessary supplies

Kate Johnson prepares for mental exertion


And on the final evening …

The best of quiz teams (even if we didn’t win). April Hardy, Alison Morton, Denise Barnes, Eilidh McGinness, Me, Bernardine Kennedy


All there is left to say is, Roll on RNAConf15!

Over and out!