Helen Cresswell (1934-2005)
Popular and very prolific British author. Born in Nottingham in 1934. Books began to play a very important part in her life from an early age when she had to spend a year in hospital with spinal problems and spent much of the time reading voraciously. She also enjoyed writing her own poems and stories as a child.
She graduated from Kings College, London, with an English degree and worked briefly as a teacher, literary assistant and fashion buyer before becoming a full time author. Over the years she has written well over 100 children's books in a wide variety of genres. She is also well known for her scripts adapting children's classics for TV, including dramas such as Five Children and It and The Demon Headmaster. Her own Lizzie Dripping series about a girl and a witch (which will be fondly remembered by all of us of a certain age!) was also adapted into a hit TV drama in the 1970s.
Although Helen was not a pony book author, she did write a popular fantasy story about a magical little horse from the sea. She also seems to like donkeys, as apart from appearing in this pony story, they are featured in two more of her books.
(Sources: Guardian & Independant obituaries)