A HEADTEACHER turned writer went back to his old school to sign copies of his latest book.

John Kitchen visited Standlake Primary School, in Church Green, to promote his first published children’s book Nicola’s Ghost.

Mr Kitchen retired from the primary school seven years ago to concentrate on writing.

He said: “It was like things hadn’t changed, sitting in the hall.

“Some of the children were still there from when I was there, but just a bit older.

“I enjoyed sitting there and chatting away to them — they were very responsive and asked some good questions.

“It was like when you learn to ride a bike, you don’t forget.

“The staff seemed to think it was a good idea.

“Even those who weren’t buying books brought up bits of paper for me to sign.”

Children also enjoyed a demonstration on how to make a pinhole camera, which features in the book.

Headteacher Sandra Connell said: “The children had a lovely one and three-quarter hour workshop, where John told the children how the book came about, how he got the idea to develop the story.

“He showed the children all the work he had put into making the book. We had a very interactive afternoon and then he read some extracts from Nicola’s Ghost.

“The children were really excited, they really liked the hands-on element with the pinhole camera..”

Widowed grandfather-of-two Mr Kitchen, of Ducklington, wrote plays, pantomimes and musicals for pupils during his teaching days.

Aimed at children aged nine upwards, his first book is about a family haunted by a dark secret. Two schoolfriends set about unravelling the mysteries of the past, and stumble across many twists and surprises.