Iain was born and brought up in Stornoway on the island of Lewis. He began his journalistic career in Aberdeen, before moving to Inverness, where he worked as a reporter, as well as writing a weekly music column. He became editor of the late lamented 'Football Times' in the last days of hot-metal printing, and, indeed, of the 'Football Times'. He joined the BBC’s Radio Highland in 1978 and avoided the sack for 35 years. His work took him to many parts of Europe, the USA and to Westminster, as well as longer spells with BBC Scotland in Glasgow. He was chairman of the National Union of Journalists’ Highlands and Islands branch and was twice named Journalist of the Year in the Highlands and Islands Media awards.
His first book for Kessock Books – Where Seagulls Dare: The insider guide to the best of the Highlands and Islands – was published in 2016.
Rab was born in Inverness, and went to the Crown School and Royal Academy. He attended Edinburgh University, then moved to London, gained an honours degree in politics at Essex University, and entered the London book publishing business.
He worked as commissioning editor / publisher for Granada, Hutchinson, Penguin, Wildwood House, Argus and Hamlyn. Since 1996 he has worked for himself, establishing and running 'N16', a popular North London magazine, and also writing ten books, mainly on football. He is currently Publishing Director of Kessock Books.
Merrill was born on the Wirral and grew up in Glasgow but has spent most of her life living in the Highlands. She graduated from Glasgow School of Art in the mid-1970s and went on to work both as a medical illustrator and for BBC Scotland before moving to the Highlands in the early 1980s. Merrill has always been greatly influenced by her passion for natural history and the dramatic scenery of the West Coast of Scotland. Her watercolours, oil paintings, acrylics and illustrations have been widely exhibited. Her work can be viewed at www.merrillmacwilliam.com
Her first book for Kessock Books – Moments in Time: Sketches around Inverness – was published in 2015.
David Spaven has spent his working life in and around the rail industry – in marketing management, operations and consultancy – and over the last six years has used that experience to research and write five books which explore business, geographical, historical and social aspects of Britain’s railways. ‘Mapping the Railways’ (2011) is a best-seller and won the 2013 Popular Transport Book of the Year at the Railway & Canal Historical Society awards. Following on from that success came ‘Britain’s Scenic Railways’ and ‘Waverley Route: the life, death and rebirth of the Borders Railway’ (both 2012) and then ‘The Railway Atlas of Scotland’ in 2015.
David is a well-known commentator on sustainable transport issues in Scotland, and has made many appearances on radio and TV over the last 30 years. He has never owned a car and hasn’t flown since 2005 – but finds that his feet, buses and trains take him most places.
His first book for Kessock Books – Highland Survivor: The story of the Far North Line – was published in 2016.
David was born in Edinburgh and was educated at George Watson’s College and Inverness Royal Academy. He gained an Honours History Degree from Edinburgh University and a Post Graduate Degree in Human Resource Management from Robert Gordon’s Business School in Aberdeen.
It was entirely logical, therefore, that he pursued a career in the fishing and frozen food industry, joining Christian Salvesen (Seafoods) in 1976. He was, in due course, appointed Operational Director and, simultaneously, Managing Director of associate company Tendafrost Frozen Foods in Lincolnshire. In 2000 he joined a new Denholm Seafoods/Croan Seafoods joint venture company and constructed and operated a state-of-the-art pelagic fish freezing plant in Peterhead.
David retired in 2010 and writes for fun. His first railway book – 'Light Hearted Lines' – was published in 2012 and was followed by – 'If Goalposts Could Talk…The Life and Times of Inverurie Locomotive Works Football Club' – in 2015. The Insider Rail Guides, in collaboration with David Spaven, represent his first involvement with Kessock Books.