At my secondary school, Shildon Sunnydale Comprehensive, I had always enjoyed and had been good at writing stories in English Language and History. Many years later I had a great idea. What if I could bring Scammells to life in a series of exciting children’s books? How could I achieve this, how could it be done? The answer came to me after I had visited some good friends who operate a heavy recovery garage.
Why not have Scammells working and operating from a garage that was similar to the one in which I served my apprenticeship? They then could be involved in a series amazing adventures from their base. This would be called ‘Sundown Garage’.
When I started writing my first story, which became the basis of my first book ‘The Ghost Train’ I originally had three Scammells and three drivers and one garage owner. However, I soon realised how difficult it was to write for all these characters. Three Scammells then had to become two and the full book had to be completely re-written.
With Scammell Stories I wanted the adventures to be believable so all the Stories are written around events that could possibly happen in real life. The Stories have been set in rural Nothumberland and all the place names in the book are actual towns.
My main problem was not just writing a script, but how to bring a Scammell to life. I can write the books, but I consider myself unable to draw! This problem was solved when I had a meeting with Kev Stevens, who owns his company The Art Room North East Limited. I had met Kev many years ago and although he was aware that I had the idea of writing a children’s book, he was, at that point, unaware what a Scammell was or looked like! At the same time, what I did not know about Kev was that he was a fantastic illustrator, and after we had a long meeting I found he had the ability to convert my story and ideas of what I wanted into actual drawings.
Colour schemes, workshops, the garage and the main characters all had to be planned in great detail. One problem we encountered was how to make a Scammell look sad, happy or concerned. I may a have written the book, but I have to thank Kev for bringing all the characters to life. Two years later, we have the end result, the first Scammell adventure entitled ‘The Ghost Train’.
I do hope you enjoy my first book and I’m now working on the second Scammell Story entitled ‘The Tyrefitter’
If you need to know more then please contact myself and remember ‘Everyone loves a Scammell’.
Many thanks for reading this.