Dr Alex (Roberston) Kolaczkowski has taught history at schools in Bath and Bristol, as well as in Wiltshire, Oxfordshire and Surrey. Her B.Ed degree was awarded by the University of Bristol and her Ph.D by the University of Bath. A dedicated teacher, passionate about all aspects of her subject, she took her pupils on frequent field trips, making ancient, medieval, early modern and modern topics alike come vividly to life. Bath and Bristol are cities very well known to her having lived, studied and worked in both of them. Her expertise in Bath history stemmed from her years spent researching the city as a case-study for her doctoral topic on the development of municipal socialism and the civic ideal in the nineteenth century. By invitation from the Dictionary of National Biography she provided the entry for Sir Jerom Murch who was Mayor of Bath on seven occasions, and wrote a paper on aspects of Bath Non-Conformism for the Unitarian Journal. These research activities helped provide her specialist background knowledge of the period and places in which the novel is set.