When it comes to inspirational landscapes there are few that can compare with the dramatic locations of the North East of England, as immortalised in the novels of Catherine Cookson. Her feisty, shawl clad heroines and handsome, diamond-in-the- rough heroes people the industrial streets and docklands of South Shields and the rural communities of what was once Northumberland, as their stories are told by one of the most popular writers of all time. Yet the tales of Tilly Trotter, Kate Hannigan and the Mallens, to name but a few of Catherine Cookson's creations, are all based on the author's experiences of growing up in South Shields, and although hard to believe, Catherine Cookson's own life story is equally as remarkable as any of her great novels. To find out more, step back in time to the early 1900s, on a journey of discovery in search of Leam Lane and the streets of Tyne Dock, where we can set out in Catherine Cookson's footsteps, to uncover the incredible period of history she was so much a part of. The Life and Times of Catherine Cookson has something for everyone, from the most avid reader of the novels right through to the complete Catherine Cookson novice. This is a thrilling rags to riches story that really does prove the old adage that fact is stranger than fiction, and is definitely not to be missed.