Ticknall has been a base for chef Ig Oliver since the late ’70s, from his earliest days working at local establishments such as the Crewe and Harpur, Hardinge Arms, The Fallen Knight at Ashby-de-la-Zouch and others, but his career as a chef has from time to time taken him to many far-flung places.
In the early ’90s he moved to London, securing work for King Hussain of Jordan in Palace Gardens. He was later offered work in Switzerland, America, and Russia, cooking and working for various celebrities, palaces, chateaus and embassies; for the likes of Asher Edelman the real Gordon Gekko from the movie Wall Street portrayed by Michael Douglas. Then cooking for Kirk Douglas, later through Lord Hanson, Brigadier Landon the White Sheik, Lord Heseltine, the American Embassy in Geneva. Prime ministers, presidents, politicians and many of the Royal Family.
In the late ’90s, he was working as house manager and executive chef in Moscow, overseeing the catering of the first state visit to Moscow by HRH Elizabeth II, afterwards receiving an award in the Kremlin by the queen.
Having worked all around the world, and proving himself to be a world class chef, Ig now has now put pen to paper to apply his imagination to another dish – an imaginative and enthralling plate – through fictional writing and beautiful illustrations.
Coming from a rural background, he is imbued with the life, communities and natural beauties of the countryside which he keeps close to his heart and this has inspired his writing. A magical trilogy fantasy adventure for children started here in Ticknall in a garden instigated by his daughter Indiana at Mount Cottage, still the home of his parents John and Rosemary Oliver. The story sees its wonderful characters travel to more adventures in other places, ending with a message we can all understand.
Having done many fine oil paintings and portraits in his spare time, Ian puts these skills to good use in his own beautiful book illustrations to help tell the stories he has so well conjured up through his remarkable imagination and experiences.
The first book of the trilogy has been nominated for the Author Academy Awards who describe it as follows:-
A wonderful children’s fantasy adventure of fiction and the first ever magic, bringing natures world into life through its brilliant characters illustrations and plot, part one of a trilogy, pulling at the readers emotions and engulfing them into a world of magic. The author’s incredible storytelling, his imagination takes you to another place with twists that will awaken your love for nature.
You can vote for it here. Follow the link and find it on the Fantasy books section by scrolling the arrows 1-16 to page number 4.