AUTHOR JK Rowling praised Barrow after researching the town for one of her Strike novels.

The novelist, famous for her Harry Potter series, visited the town as a recce for her 2015 novel Career of Evil

She was spotted in the town centre the year before. 

JK Rowling replied to a tweet thanking her for visiting the town previously under a thread related to an upcoming Strike novel, called The Running Grave, written under pseudonym Robert Galbraith.

She said: "Barrow-in-Furness was one of my very favourite places I've visited while researching these books. Utterly unlike any other British town I can think of."

One of the replies to her tweet said that JK's Rowling grasp 'of the local lingo/atmosphere is excellent' in the novel.

This book would later be adapted into a BBC TV series released in 2018. The show was shot on location in Barrow, and actors Tom Burke and Holliday Grainger played Cormoran Strike and Robin Ellacott. 

News and Star: Mike Stephenson in the Last Resort cafe Mike Stephenson in the Last Resort cafe (Image: Lindsey Dickings)

READ MORE HERE: The Last Resort Coffee Shop in Barrow closes

In Career of Evil, the third story after The Cuckoo's Calling and The Silkworm, Strike and Robin leave London to investigate a crime linked to areas in Scotland and Barrow. 

When filming for the TV series, the characters shot scenes on the streets on Barrow Island and at The Crow's Nest pub. 

In the novel, the characters pass Craven Park rugby ground and there are references to the Crow's Nest, the Olympic takeaway, Barrow Grammar School for Boys and BAE Systems. 

Strike and Robin also eat in The Last Resort cafe on Cavendish Street. 

Ken and Jean Crosby, of Ulverston, spotted the author in the town centre in 2014. She visited The Last Resort cafe and went to The Crow's Nest. 

Mike Stephenson, the owner of The Last Resort cafe, said in 2015: “I’m off on a Thursday and Friday and I’m sure if she had been in while I was there I would have recognised her.

“It’s nice to see Barrow in a good light after what Bill Bryson said in his last book. He came with a preconceived idea.

“It’s nice to think that someone like JK Rowling came to Barrow to do her research and came in the Last Resort and she enjoyed coming in."

“It’s not every day you get a best-selling novelist coming in.”

Mike and Debbie Stephenson closed The Last Resort cafe in March 2022.