July authors of the month.
July's authors of the month are Spike Milligan and Nick Sharratt.
Born and raised in India, his real name was Terence Alan Patrick Sean Milligan. His father was Irish and his mother English. Spike arrived in England when he was fifteen years old and went on to become a Jazz singer and trumpeter.
He served as a Signaller in the Artillery for six years which took him to fight in World War two. It was during this time that he entertained the troops with his comedy sketches. He was eventually injured by a mortar and suffered from shell shock.
He married three times and had six children. Family was incredibly important to him. He changed his first name after hearing the U.S band Spike Jones and his City Slickers. Milligan was a staunch environmentalist and attacked an art exhibition that was electrocuting fish.
In 1992, he became an honorary Commander of the British Empire, followed by an honorary knighthood in 2000. Interestingly, the Australians also honoured Spike by naming a suspension bridge after him.
Nick Sharrat was born in London in 1962. He is the oldest of four children. Nick studied art at Manchester Metropolitan university, followed by graphic design at St.Martin's school of art.
He has become a famous author through books that include; Don't put your finger in the jelly, Nelly ! Ketchup on your cornflakes ? Octopus Socktopus and Elephant wellyphant. However, Sharratt has always been a freelance illustrator too. Well known authors he has sketched for include; Jaqueline Wilson, Julia Donaldson and Michael Rosen.
He has been nominated for the Kate Greenaway medal and is the proud owner of a Gold Blue Peter badge.