In The Hotseat - Whitby’s famous author Graham Taylor

Former Whitby curate Graham Taylor is now a best-selling author, thrilling audiences worldwide is In The Hotseat.

He sold his motorbike to self-publish his first novel, Shadowmancer, which was snapped up by publishers Faber and Faber. The book spent 15 weeks at the top of the British book charts, making GP Taylor a millionaire and much sought-after literary talent.

Subsequent books have followed and his works have been translated into 48 languages.

The ex-policeman lives in Cloughton, Scarborough with his family but is still a regular visitor to Whitby.

1 What are your first memories of Whitby?

Being taken there by train at the age of three.

We got off at West Cliff Station and walked in to town.

I was pushed in my pram.

I have a photo of that day on my bedside table.

2 What makes Whitby special to you?

The people and the landscape.

There are so many wonderful and some eccentric people in Whitby.

I would love to be Pete Budd – he is an unbelievably generous bloke with a real heart for the town.

People like him make Whitby a special place.

3 Are you Captain Cook or Dracula?


He was far nicer to people than Cook.

Cook has a lot of explaining to do.

I am going to write a screenplay about the real Captain Cook and blow the myth he was a benign explorer.

I would rather go for a pint with Dracula.

4 What has been the highlight of your life so far?

Topping the New York Times best seller list – that and sailing into Whitby on the Grand Turk.

5 What is your biggest regret?

Writing Shadowmancer.

6 What did you have for breakfast this morning?

Toast and coffee.

7 What is your favourite eating place?

The White Horse and Griffin in Church Street.

I love sitting by the fire downstairs and watching all the other people eating.

I once thought I saw a ghost there.

8 Where are the best fish and chips?


I love that place and spend a lot of time in there.

My family insist in coming over as often as they can to have a meal in the window seat.

9 What is your worst habit?


10 Where was your last holiday?

It was a narrow boat holiday on the Kennet River.

11 When was the last time you cried?

It was when I watched the last episode of Midsummer Murders.

The thought of Barnaby leaving was just too much.

I sat and sobbed and still don’t know why.

12 What would be your ideal day in Whitby?

Three hours in the Whitby Bookshop.

Lunch at the White Horse and Griffin followed by a long walk along the cliffs and then back on the beach.

I would have ice cream on the way before going to Trenchers for a fish supper.

The day would be topped off by a trip on the Yellow Boat before a ghost tour to St Mary’s Churchyard.

13 What was your first job?

I was a maker of sausage rolls at a local bakery.

14 What is your favourite film?

Don’t look now...

15 What is your favourite book?

Animal Farm – or the minutes of Whitby Town Council – I love comedy.

16 If you won the Lottery, what would you do with the money?

I would employ a legal team to free Whitby from the fetters of Scarborough so that it could become a true and independent town.

I cannot understand why the people of Whitby allow themselves to be ruled by their biggest competitor.

17 What is your favourite pub?

The White Horse and Griffin followed by The Board.

18 What is your signature dish?

Steak and chips.

19 What is your favourite drink?

Gin and tonic.

20 What would be your epitaph?

I told you it wasn’t man flu.