Kate Saunders was a journalist, novelist, children’s writer and actress who was also a guest on the first ever episode of the BBC’s news quiz programme Have I Got News for You, in 1990.
Saunders’ varied career saw her win the Betty Trask Award for first novels by authors under 35 and the Costa Children’s Book Award. She also wrote, with Peter Stanford, the controversial Catholics and Sex and co-presented the resulting television series. For good measure, she played Rodney Trotter’s policewoman girlfriend in the sitcom Only Fools and Horses. Saunders was a lifelong fan of Victorian fiction, a penchant that she turned to good effect in her Laetitia Rodd mystery series. Saunders was a Booker Prize judge in 1990, alongside Hilary Mantel. She died in April 2023.