Vera Southgate was Senior Lecturer in Curriculum Studies at the University of Manchester and had wide teaching experience in infant, junior, secondary and special schools. She was a member of the Government Committee of Inquiry into Reading and the Use of English set up Margaret Thatcher. In addition, Vera served as the President of the United KIngdom Reading Association. Vera published material for researchers, teachers, students and children. She may be best remembered by a generation of children and parents for her work as an editor of children's books for the Well Loved Tales, the Favouite Tales, the Little Owl First Readers.