As someone who walks around Penny Pie Park every day, I have to say that it crossed my mind that the recent visiting fair might make a mess of the grass. But I’m not going to join in any criticism. I thought it was lovely having it there, a bit of old school fun and I was only sorry that the weather was so bad some days that the fairground folk might not be making their wages.

There is a quagmire there anyway when the weather gets bad, the draining isn’t the best. Yes all those trucks and feet have churned it up, but it’ll recover I’m sure. There’s far more to moan about. I do love the smells and atmosphere of a fairground and I hope it was worth it for them.

I was knocked six this week by the death of Hairy Biker Dave Myers because we were friends. I wasn’t in his intimate circle by any stretch, but we would speak and message and the source of our friendship was that he listened to all my books on audio with his wife.

Six years ago he asked a novelist friend of mine, at their publisher’s party, if she knew me and when she said that she did, Dave recorded a video message to me saying that he had enjoyed all my books and ‘thought I was very funny’. It was charming and cheering because at the time I was low because I’d just had to say goodbye to my cat.

He sent me signed cookery books and tickets to go and see him and Si on stage and then stay on afterwards. So we did and even though I was pretty sure they’d be the same if a camera was on them or not (unlike others I’ve met) it was wonderful to have it confirmed. They sent me signed cookery books, I sent Dave codes for downloading my new books, but he never used them because he wanted to buy them – and he always preordered so they’d land on his device on the day they were released. Then he would contact me to tell me which bits he’d liked best. It was definitely one in the eye for the book snobs who think only an inferior demographic reads romantic fiction. Dave liked me and Lee Child, and why can’t you like both? Why do you have to stick to one genre?

People don’t in real life, it’s only the snobs that would have you believe they do. At one point Dave sent me out on a mission to take covert photos of a Barnsley mansion he fancied buying and I was delighted that he was thinking of living here. In the end he plumped for a gorgeous house in the next county and we were invited down to visit with a home-cooked Sunday dinner thrown in. We never got round to it because he wasn’t 100% and I told him to wait until he was. You always think you have more time, don’t you?

There’s a lesson learned. The Hairy Bikers combined the very ordinary with the extraordinary. We all loved their wit and down-to-earth approach and their genuine friendship as well as their passion and talent for cooking. I thought he was getting better. He told me he had hair growing back in places where it had never grown before and he’d had to go to the barbers for the first time since he was a teenager. I took that as a sign he was on the up, yet he wasn’t and I am gutted. What a wonderful man he was.