Old Pogle News.
In 2002 we hosted for the third year a celebration
of the works of Oliver Postgate and Peter Firmin at the National Film Theatre
There was a screening of selected
episodes drawn from The Smallfilms Treasury, the Clangers, Noggin the Nog
, Ivor the Engine and Bagpuss,and there was the chance to meet Oliver
Postgate and Peter Firmin and to share with them some recently revived films.
It was a very delightful evening. The now
elderly puppets of Mr and Mrs Pogle, Pippin and Tog were all there with Master
Hedgepig (and the Witch !) and we watched some of the episodes of Pogles Wood
which Oliver Postgate
had commissioned the Dragons to locate, repair,
clean up, and otherwise twiddle with.
to read about the Episodes
The 5 episodes shown : Strong Music; A Little
House; Flowers; Bricks; and A Paper Tiger were feared lost due to
deterioration in the original films and their absence from the BBC library.
At the screening people had a a rare
chance to thank Oliver and Peter for the influence they have had in the
lives of so many children, and to ask questions bout their storytelling, models,
illustrations and work, the true value of which is at last being recognised.
It was lovely to hear the gales of laughter
as the characterful and quirky humour of the Pogles was re-discovered. We were
also delighted to have the late Vernon Elliott's daughters with us to hear their
fathers music being applauded.
A great little chap called Detsi was running
around with the microphone, and it was a pleasure to hear people expressing
their thanks and their questions for Oliver and Peter.
Peter's grandson Gabriel made an appearance too,
as Pippin ... and also made a disappearance !
To read Jedi's account of 2002's event.. click on the
Peter Firmin 1928 - 2018
When I think about Peter, as I have been quite a lot
recently, I think of a man who made the most of every opportunity.
Fascinating career, heavenly marriage and
relationship, moved to a wonderful idyllic farmhouse with a young family. A man
who gave so much pleasure but enjoyed every second of the journey. He made
everything he touched better.
I feel that he lived without regret, fulfilled in work, art, family, home,
surrounded by projects, hobbies and interests. I remember ringing to speak to
'Hello Loaf' said Joan 'I'll take the phone out to Peter'
I'm sure I heard her climbing a ladder.
'Hello Loaf' said Peter, who at the age of 80 odd was repairing his roof. He had
just come back from crewing a sailing ship, climbing the rigging and all that
Tall ship racing entails. He sent me a CD Rom of photos from the trip.
I remember when he bought the field at the back of his house and dug out a pond
where there was a natural spring.
Of course it became home to rare newts (and toads I seem to recall). He then
learned how to steam wood in order to bend it to build a boat to row to the
island on the pond.
What a great man. Who blessed us all who knew him. He didn't rest on his laurels
or his opinion of himself, but moved forwards. Always most interested in his new project.
asked to talk about the Oliver and Peter combo, I always, in signifying
differences between them, remember the question from a young girl at one of the
BFI events we staged.
A hand went up, the microphone made its way to her, and a small voice nervously
piped up 'Where are the Clangers now?'
This being long before there was talk of remakes, Oliver Postgate in
his slightly romantic, yet Yaffley way said 'Goodness, well, yes, their doing
alright, getting on with their lives, living on their planet...'
Peter interrupted Oliver with a
measured 'They are in a tin trunk under my desk'
And so they were.
Thankyou Peter for all you gave us.
Wood Kickstarter Party
seventeenth of October 2015, somewhere in the heart of the Kent countryside a
handsome group of people met with Loaf of The Dragons' Friendly Society to visit
the celebrated puppet maker and set designer, Peter Firmin, to hear the story of
Izzard a lifelong fan joined us.
he is with Peter
We all met
in the barn where Peter worked with Oliver Postgate to make such children's
classics as Pogles Wood, The Clangers and Bagpuss. The event was arranged to
help celebrate the pending release of fourteen episodes of Pogles Wood on DVD
which have remained unseen since their broadcast by the BBC in 1968. Of course
the Pogles were guests of honour, having escaped Canterbury Museum for the
weekend but other special guests included Bagpuss and Basil Brush who were also
made by Peter.
Postgate (Oliver's son) with Basil Brush
It was a
truly wonderful afternoon of sandwiches, cake and bilberry wine in the company
of Peter while he told us about the fantastical world of Smallfilms. The day
culminated in the screening of an episode of Pogles Wood which everyone agreed
had maintained its magic. So thank you to everyone who attended and made the day
so special and also to everyone who helped with the kickstarter campaign.
are now ready
Loads of pictures on our Facebook page
Many many congratulations to our
fabulous Peter Firmin and Dan on the Clangers' Childrens BAFTA!
For the first time since the 1960s, Oliver Postgate's
classic stories of The Seal of Neptune and the 1963 Mermaids Pearls.
.... in time for Christmas!
Also we are happy to say that we have
negotiated the rights to release Oliver's series Tottie: The Story of A
it will be on sale from us at a cost of £14.99 inc P&P
Oliver' s final work was to collate and produce this book. Click on the cover for
Oliver and Peter were presented with an award for their lasting contribution to Children's
Entertainment by the charity Action for
Children's Arts at the Savoy Hotel in London on 11th October 2007.
Nick Park make the presentation. Oliver
couldnt make it but three of his sons were there, as well as Peter and Joan and
their 6 daughters!
It was a very moving
occaision. We heard from some of the great and the good from British Childrens
TV, a full write up will follow but here is a photo of Nick Park (left) with
Loaf, Bernard Cribbins (front) Peter and Monica Sims, one of the great and
inspired minds behind the commissioning of Children's TV in the 1960s and 70s
When I get the official photos I
will stick em up
click on the image for information
PAST EVENTS NEWS
Sadly Oliver didnt feel well enough
to attend, but Peter was more than happy to launch the Viking Festival at York,
thinly disguised as Thor Nogson !
We are all very sorry to hear of the
death of Ronnie
Stevens, the voice of Graculus and Romf in Noggin - aged 81.
Here he is onstage with
Oliver and Peter at the NFT a few years ago. A talented, quietly spoken and
charming man who will be greatly missed.
here to read of his
long and varied film career or on the picture to read his obituary in the
Our thoughts go out to his son and
family and friends.
Saturday 20th November 2004 at 4.15pm -we enjoyed a galloping journey through the history of Smallfilms with Oliver and Peter at the National
It was a bit of a rush as we could have done with
three times our allotted 90 minutes.. but hey ho.
An illustrated master-class
From the dark sagas of Noggin the Nog
to the homely world of Bagpuss, the power and simplicity of their work
have made Peter Firmin and Oliver Postgate masters of the art of
Come and hear about their highly
original production techniques, see favourite clips and ask questions of
the two men who have spent their lives making some of the most cherished
works of children's television
Our Noggin event at the
British Museum... photos online.
click on the photos below
(Why the British Museum ?... because its where the 12th
Century Lewis chessmen live, and it was they who inspired Peter to write the
first ever Noggin story)
300 + people enjoyed an enchanting evening.
POGLES WOOD Characters
on Exhibition in the MUSEUM OF CANTERBURY
The Pogles, Clangers and Bagpuss and friends are on permanent display with
Noggin's flying ship.
For more details contact:
MUSEUM OF CANTERBURY
Canterbury Kent UK
Tel: + 44 (0)1227 475202 firstname.lastname@example.org
Watch this space for further announcements.
Personal Note and Credits
To all friends of Dragons ....
Most especially to Oliver Postgate and Peter Firmin,
creators of Soup Dragons.
Thanks also to Stephen Fry, Phill Jupitus and
Jonathan Ross for his tireless and
selfless plugging, Mike March at March
design, Lisa and Ken at Insight, Warren at 360 Media/Granada
TV , Rob McManway for looking after ebay at a small profit, David Allsop, Veronica Taylor
at the NFT, Richard Ingrams of
Oldie Magazine, Terry Wogan at the BEEB, Nick Park, Peter Lord and
David Sproxton at Aardman and to
Nigel Baker and Neil Jones for helping to make this website the cool green place it
Thanks to all.
Did I miss anyone ?
© Dragons Friendly Limited 2001-2018
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
original artwork photographs text and characters
Firmin and Oliver Postgate