Antoinette Parkes was born in 1946 and started her career as a bookshop owner on the Pimlico Road. For a period she was Cookery Editor of The Daily Mail and in 1981 she published her first book, The Country Weekend Cookbook, to great acclaim. Later, she turned to buying and restoring farm and country houses. Since leaving Ashcombe she has restored two more houses and she now lives in Odiham, in Hampshire. She has two sons and four grandchildren.