After 30 years as a filmmaker, Martin Granger has turned to fiction.

“Foreign chemical agent found on British soil.” A headline that resonates with many of us after the recent events in Salisbury. It is often said that fact is stranger than fiction. Not in this case however, for it was two years ago that I sat down to write my third book, Drugs To Forget. I promise you I am no clairvoyant, but the plot involves the planting of a chemical agent in southern England by a foreign terrorist group. They are Africans rather than alleged Russians, and the agent is Ebola rather than a nerve substance, but the story sounds oddly familiar.

I used to ply my trade as a documentary film producer, and my tale began to germinate with an event in Africa. My crew and I were en route from Harare to the African bush, planning to film a television programme on healthcare in the developing world, and were brought up sharp by a wail of sirens. Red dust was kicked up in the distance, flashing blue lights tore towards us. The cameraman, who was driving, spat out an expletive, wrenched the truck onto the verge and pulled up with screeching brakes. Later I was told that this is not an unusual occurrence in Zimbabwe. This was some years ago, but I assume the new president may have the same rules. Motorists must pull over immediately when the presidential cavalcade is passing.