Loykey & Lillybit’s inspiration developed one very windy rainy day in autumn. They were driving in their old, reliable, faithful friend George, their little Peugeot 206 convertible, to a business meeting in Ditchling Sussex. They were very early for the meeting and found themselves being drawn to Jack and Jill Windmills and could not think of a better way of killing time.

Sitting so proudly in the South Downs with mother nature lashing against their sails, the windmills looked stunning. Loykey thought it would be the perfect setting for a children’s story book, as they both loved windmills and thought that they had a magic all of their own. Lillybit imagined a little rag doll sitting at the window and announced that she would be called Alice. Loykey agreed and thought she should have a friend and he would be called Alfie. They carried on daydreaming and reminiscing about their childhoods until it was back to reality, so once again in adult mode, off they drove to their 10.30 meeting.

Three months later, Loykey and Lillybit were on holiday in the South of France when one extremely hot afternoon, totally the opposite to that rainy day in Sussex, Loykey announced that he had just written the first chapter of their new book: ‘Alice and Alfie and the magic windmill.’

From that moment on their lives would never be the same again. That week’s holiday turned into a year and that first book turned into six and, with so many product designs on the drawing board, they decided to return to England.

One year later, and yes, another windy rainy day, Lillybit was sitting in front of a drawing board and started messing around drawing a couple of characters. Suddenly they both realised Lillybit, like Loykey, had a hidden talent and Loykey could not think of anyone better to bring Alice and Alfie to life, so three hundred illustrations later: