Who was Jill Murphy's husband? Children's author who wrote 'The Worst Witch' series dies at 72

Jill Murphy died on Wednesday, August 18, in Cornwall with her son Charlie and niece Isabelle at her side


                            Who was Jill Murphy's husband? Children's author  who wrote 'The Worst Witch' series dies at 72
Jill Murphy was best known for her eight illustrated series of 'The Worst Witch' (Jill Murphy/Website)

'The Worst Witch' series author Jill Murphy died after a long battle with cancer. She was 72 years old. The author died on Wednesday, August 18, in Cornwall with her son Charlie and niece Isabelle at her side.

Murphy's son, Charlie said in a statement, "I feel beyond lucky to have had a mum like mine and it's impossible to summarise the ways her absence will be felt." He further added, "She had a depth of character, a warmth and a life force like no other. I miss her so much already." We have witnessed the demise of many artists in 2021. Chuck Close, Joe Galloway, Sonny Chiba are to name a few.

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Murphy's agent and friend of many years, Pamela spoke of her death and said, "It's a sad day for children's books. Jill was so creative, beautiful and funny. Her genius lay in the way both the child and the adult could identify with her stories, which she wrote and illustrated herself. Children who grew up on Peace At Last, Whatever Next! and The Large Family are now buying the books for their children's children." She also added, "Jill was just coming into her prime and had so much more to offer. This is a great loss, not least to me personally, but we are comforted that she leaves an amazing legacy of books for generations to come."

Murphy was best known for her eight illustrated series of 'The Worst Witch'. The highly popular franchise was even made into a TV show starring Felicity Jones and Una Stubbs that ran between 1998 and 2001. Murphy is also known for her picture books, including 'The Large Family' series about a family of elephants. Her last book, 'Just One Of Those Days' came out in September 2020. Murphy had numerous accolades to her name including 'The Smarties Prize' for her book 'The Last Noo Noo'. Murphy's other popular books, 'Peace At Last' and 'All In One Piece' were commended for the 'Kate Greenaway Medal'. 

Murphy spoke about her cancer battle in 2017 and said, "As anyone who has had this treatment knows, if you’ve had it you get something called chemo brain, it’s almost as though your mind is only trying to process what you need, so you don’t remember things properly. You can’t even quite remember a sentence construction. But I don’t want to write anything that’s not good."

Who was Jill Murphy married to?

Murphy was married to a British studio potter, artist, book illustrator, writer and poet, Roger Michell. The couple, however, divorced later. Charlie, is their son who was born in 1990. Roger Michell passed away in April 2018 after a short illness. 

'RIP, Jill Murphy'

Fans swarmed Twitter with messages of 'remembrance' for Murphy. One fan wrote, "Thank you for giving so much joy to all the children I’ve read your wonderful stories to over the last 20 years I’ve been teaching. Peace at Last Jill Murphy." Another tweeted, "Terribly sad news about author #jillmurphy May she rest in peace. This was all of my children's favourite bedtime story....I can recall the book without the need to read it. #PeaceAtLast"

One tweet read, "RIP Jill Murphy. For every moment that I've spent reading and adoring one of your books I thank you." Another fan commented, "As new parents we lived and breathed every word of Peace at Last! Thank you Jill Murphy..."



 



 



 



 

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