hat do Bagpuss, Postman Pat and Peppa Pig all have in common? Classic children’s TV undoubtedly, but now they all appear as part of a set of special stamps issued by the Royal Mail to celebrate 60 years of British cartoons.
They are joined by other favourites including Andy Pandy, Paddington Bear, Dougal (Magic Roundabout), Mr Benn, Great Uncle Bulgaria (The Wombles), Ivor the Engine, Windy Miller (Camberwick Green), Bob the Builder and Shaun the Sheep.
Royal Mail Stamps’ Andrew Hammond said: “For over 60 years, Britain’s children’s TV characters have brought cheer to generations of viewers. More importantly it has presented us with a cast of characters that, like the memories of the programmes themselves, remain with us throughout our lives. It feels appropriate to celebrate all of these unforgettable characters on a set of very special stamps.”
Many would agree that while British animation has often been light years behind its American counterpart, it has maintained a certain charm that all the technological advances under the sun just cannot replicate. This, combined with the air of nostalgia that it lends itself to, means that home-grown cartoons often stay dear to the hearts of viewers, meaning that any memorobilia gets snapped up like a shot.
But with every shortlist comes some glaring omissions – yes, even the innocent world of children’s television does not escape the wrath of controversy! Were the adventures of Captain Pugwash aboard the Black Pig all in vain? Was Parsley a hit with generations simply for being the world’s first green lion? The debates could rage on in pubs and playschools throughout the land. Nonetheless, the chosen few offer a fitting representation of Great British animation from the 1950s onwards.
To get your hands on a copy of this unique collection, which went on sale on January 7th, visit the Royal Mail online or pop down to your nearest post office.