NEARLY 40 delegates and friends of the Dorothy Dunnett Society descended on Chester for a weekend to socialise, dine and listen to lectures about historical novels ‘King Hereafter’ and ‘Niccolo Rising’ .

Talks were given at the Grosvenor Museum by two University of Chester lecturers.

Dr Katherine Wilson explored the theme ‘Silk - Europe’s Rich fabric’- early industrial espionage brought silkworm culture and silk weaving to Italy and France.

Then Dr Tom Pickles spoke about ‘Chester’s Viking History’.

Afterwards three Society members read extracts from ‘King Hereafter’ that included my contribution from Chapter 6 about a Viking ship competition of ‘oar walking’ on our tidal River Dee, close by St John the Evangelist Church.

A coach tour on the Saturday took delegates to the Macclesfield Silk Museum and Paradise Mill and the Sunday morning involved a guided walk by local man Karl Nield (in Viking apparel) recounting tales of Viking Chester in 983 AD.

Mike Brain, of Higher Kinnerton, who took part in the weekend's activities, said: "Thanks for her superb organisational skills have been offered to DDSOC member Betty Cooper from Lincoln who has been organising such events for 20 years."

He added: "Many years ago I met the author and her husband Lord Alastair Dunnett, who was Editor of The Scotsman on Sunday, when an organised group of us visited her home in Edinburgh and saw the room where she wrote 15 historical novels and seven light-hearted adventure novels set featuring the yacht ‘Dolly’."