Monday, 19 January 2009

Two Lives in Words and Pictures

RIP this weekend to two men who brought much pleasure - first the john mortimer playwright John Mortimer. I have enjoyed many of his books - not just the Rumpole canon, but also the 'Paradise Postponed' saga about the Simcox family and the odious Leslie Titmuss. [I hope they repeat the TV production of that]

It is about 7 years since Leo McKern - the quintessential Rumpole died - but BBC radio has continued to broadcast

recordingrumpoles of these stories.

After McKern's death, they recorded a number of the stories featuring Timothy West as Rumpole and his real-life-wife, Prunella Scales as "She Who Must be Obeyed"

Then there was news of the death of Tony Hart, a wonderfully gifted  artist who loved to help children [and adults] develop their creativity.

His motto tony hartwas "Don't tell them, show them" As a child I adored "Vision On" - it ran from 1964 to 1976, and was primarily aimed at deaf children, although it was part of mainstream children's programming.

It was Tony who gave us that wonderful creature "Morph" - the forerunner of all those wonderful Aardman animations, Wallace and Gromit morphetc.

Tony Hart was also the man who designed the Blue Peter badge. He was incredibly gifted and understood how to relate to children.

According to the Guardian "When Take Hart was being broadcast on Tuesday afternoons in 1978, children would rush home from school to see it. It was estimated that no less than half those in Britain aged between five and 14 were glued to the TV set. They sent in up to 8,000 items each week, often displaying originality and humour, as with gold-painted macaroni. By 1979, Take Hart was being screened every morning."

blue peter badge

Someone on the radio this morning commented on the recent death of Oliver Postgate, and that in just a few weeks we have lost two icons of Children's Television. Iggle Piggle and Tinky Winky just do not compare!!


  1. Yes - I was touched this week that such nice people had gone - also David Vine - I spent many a happy hour with my Dad watching David Vine on sports programmes. Happy times :)

  2. I don't know those television programs Angela, but they sound a lot like the programs I used to love as a child. It's amazing the influence they can have on our lives. They sound like very gifted, wonderful people.

  3. I may be a little yonger than you Angela but I too have fond memories of Tony Hart from my childhood. Hartbeat was one of my favourite programes, especially Morph and his antics. Thanks for the post.


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