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Barbara Rowan

A pseudonym used by Ida Pollock

Ida Crowe was born on 12 April 1908 in Lewisham, Kent, England, UK, the daughter of a single mother and a unknown father, who rumoured to be a Russian duke, who her mother met at a ball in Greenwich. Ida narrowly escaped being smothered with a pillow by the nurse who attended her birth. As a teenager, she travelled alone to Morocco, after suffering a mental breakdown. From the age of ten, she knew she wanted to write. She began to write while still at school encouraged by her mother, with whom she lived in Hastings. 

During her marriage Ida travelled widely and lived in many parts of England. It was their daughter's bad asthma that brought the Pollocks to Cornwall. They also lived in Ireland, France, Italy, Malta and Switzerland, where they successfully obtained a lasting cure for Rosemary's debilitating asthma. Hugh died at 8 November 1971 in Malta, where he is buried in Mtarfa's British military cemetery. After her husband's death, Ida returned with her daughter to England and they lived several years in Wiltshire, before moving to Lanreath in 1986.

Ida is also recognised oil painter, who has been selected for inclusion in a national exhibition in 2004. She also makes model houses, usually scale miniatures of Georgian or Tudor buildings. Ida's autobiography, Starlight, published November 15, 2009, tells the story of the start of her career, her marriage, and the relation of her husband with her ex-wife Enid Blyton.

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