A FORMER Ryedale police officer has written his first novel set around the infamous 2013 landslip beneath Whitby Abbey.

Steve Pearce, who was based as a sergeant in Malton, decided to put pen to paper after retiring from the force three years ago.

“I have always thought about writing a book and over the last 12 months I found the time to dedicate to doing that,” Steve said.

“I took a factual event, that of the landslip and tied it in with fictional events of a missing girl and murder enquiry.”

'Finding Jane' focuses on a teenager brought up in a strict Methodist household who goes off to university and begins to find out more about herself and life as she becomes involved in the Goth community in Whitby.

When a body is discovered beneath the town’s Abbey following a landslip links are made to a missing persons case in Leeds.

Steve said having worked in Whitby, he was familiar with the town and was also helped by his daughter Jofi who has links with the Goth community.

“She was able to provide me with a lot of background and obviously working in the police force for 25 years I was able to draw in my own experiences although the characters are entirely fictional.”

Steve, who lives at Great Barugh with my wife Gilly, said he had enjoyed writing the novel .

“I did it in my own time and with no deadline to meet I could take my day and write as much as I wanted each day,” he added.

“When I’d finished my family’s feedback was really positive so I asked a few friends for their comments and was persuaded to get it published.”

Steve is now planning to take part in a series of book signings and is already planning his next novel.

“I have started to research another book which will again be based in North Yorkshire and use some of the police characters I have created in Finding Jane,” he added.

“I always knew I had a book in me and I am delighted that dream has now become a reality.

Finding Jane is available from local bookshops and Amazon.

For more information visit http://stevepearse59.wix.com/finding-jane-06-2014