A MUCH-LOVED children's novel set during the Second World War has taken pride of place in an exhibition at the Imperial War Museum North.

Once Upon a Wartime features the history behind The Machine Gunners by Robert Westall, who lived in Lymm.

Robert wrote the story for his son Christopher in an attempt to show him what it was like growing up during the war.

Robert, who died 19 years ago, sent it to publishers Collins who declined it before his partner Lindy McKinnel suggested he tried again.It was published by Macmillan in 1975 and subsequently won literary prize the Carnegie Medal.

The author penned a total of 48 books and was the first person to win the Carneige prize twice.