A SCANDINAVIAN bestseller based on one of the North-East most famous female saints will be available in English for the first time.

Hildas sang, which is translated as The Song of Hild, by Vibeke Vasbo, is based on the life of Abbess Hild of Whitby, and was a bestseller in Denmark, where it was first published in 1991.

Durham-based publishing house Sacristy Press has been given grants by the Danish Arts Foundation and the Jorck Foundation to translate the novel into English for the first time.

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Operations director Richard Hilton said; “This is a meticulously researched novel about women’s lives and their prominent role in the Church during the Middle Ages, the political manoeuvres of conflicting religions, the building of a monastery, and the power exercised by the Church of Rome.

“We are very pleased that, with these two grants, Sacristy Press is able to fund the translation and 27 years after it was first published in Danish, this story about England will be available to read in English.”