A RYEDALE woman has penned a children’s book in dedication of her 70-year-old family tortoise.

Angela Knights, 59, who has lived in Cropton since 1994, wanted to share her love of writing with her five grandchildren - Arabella, Edmund, Lottie, Bertie and Lizzie - by creating Toby the Tortoise.

Toby the Tortoise follows the adventures of their tortoise, also called Toby, who has lived with the Knights family since the 1950s.

Angela donated about £500 from the first 50 books to her five-year-old great-niece, Ruby Sugars.

Ruby, who lives in Pickering, has a very rare genetic syndrome which affects her speech, motor development and long-term sight.

“I started writing this book for my first grand-daughter Arabella, who is now eight years old, but then along came Edmund, Lottie, Bertie and Lizzie,” said Angela.

“I’ve always dreamed of writing a children’s book, but I could never find the time with my busy schedule.

“When lockdown was announced in March, I decided now is the time to officially write and self-publish Toby the Tortoise.

“Toby the Tortoise was finished and published during the first week of lockdown, however I couldn’t do much because our business, Evergreen Direct, is so busy.

“My daughter, Georgina O’Grady, kindly created a website for people to purchase my book.

“I wanted to give something back to the community, so I decided to donate the proceeds of my first 50 books to my great-niece Ruby, who has a rare genetic syndrome.”

Toby’s first adventure happens when he meets a stranded badger who is lost and looking for his little brother and family, before Mr Fox finds him.

Illustrated by a family-friend, Lucy Mumford, originally from Pickering, Angela is currently writing a second book dedicated to the adventures and friendships of Toby the Tortoise.

“I’m overwhelmed by the popularity and it has inspired me to write even more Toby the Tortoise adventures,” added Angela.

“I dedicate this book to my wonderful grandchildren, who I love so very dearly.”

For details, visit tobytortoise.co.uk