Friday, 12 February 2010

It's her fault!!! todays blogpost is all the fault of Amy. If it hadn't been for her, then you might have been saved the nostalgia of children's television about to assault your senses.
So yesterday Amy blogged about her daughter's joy of watching a specific children's programme called Playschool. Playschool I hear you shout, yep Playschool is still alive and kicking (see what I did there) in Oz. Ok so the toys are different, but the underlying themes and ideas are the same, even down to the windows. So it got me thinking and researching into UK Playschool because I loved it as a child. Unfortunately it has led to the pure nostaliga of my fave childhood programmes, so be prepared for a magical ride into my younger days, as some of you are alot younger than me don't feel embarrassed for me if you have no memories of said programmes but sit back, make youreslves comfortable and enjoy the ride.
Firstly, the said Playschool was a fave in our house for me and lil sis and I think especially for my mum who would have at least 15 minutes of peace and quiet whilst we watched. Playschool was all about a house, with a door and windows and had 2 presenters who did amazing things like dancing, making and reading stories. They had toys, Hamble, Humpty, Big ted and Little ted and Jemima.

They had 3 windows square, round and arched and everyday you would go through one of them to a mystery world.........they were the precursor to Tubbyvision............There were animals as well called Kokkattoo, Bit and Bot the goldfish..........I loved it. But eventually it ended....can you believe it. However it is still running in Oz so yeah for that.
The programme on next was usually Jackanory and I REALLY loved that. Stories read over a week by a famous actor/celebrity and doing all the voices and actions. I remember Bernard Cribbins and Kenneth Williams, they had g8 voices for stories.
Then I found Youtube. Ah Youtube, there you can find anything. So I delved furhter into my childhood and found Fingerbobs......a mouse with an owner who had a g8 song and made things.
Theme of creativity coming through. Of course you have to include Blue Peter......more making. I made my own Pippa house for my dolls.
I also found the Woodentops, The Pogles, Andy Pandy, and By the River Bank..........the amazing antics of a hamster called hammy, a rat called Roderick and a guinea pig called GP. Lizzie's GP's could have there own programme!!!!
Then it all got rather silly. I found the theme music for The Banana Splits so I have been Lala lalalaing around the flat singing the theme.

A whole load of black and white French dubbed programmes we saw as children like White Horses and Belle and Sebastien.
The really sad thing was how gentle the majority of these programmes were. The programmes my friend's children watch are all spies, evil men taking over the world, and generally not as subtle as I remember. Is it just me or are children subjected to much more scarey stuff these days? OK I'm not going to get on a soapbox, just wondered.
Ok so I had Dr Who but even he wasn't that scarey really. That was our Saturday night family special. About 5pm we would all sit down in the family room, yes we had a family room, and Dad would watch the football results.
Mum would bring in a trolley, yep a hostess trolley was owned in our house, and laden with crumpets, toast, Fondant fancies, homemade cakes and jamtarts. My fave FF was the chocolate one yummy. Once we had eaten and watched Final score it was children's time. Basil Brush was on. Here he is, isn't he smart?

A foxy character of Sherlock Holmes style with a human called Mister ROy. They told silly stories and jokes and Basil boom boomed alot. After that it was Dr sister always hid behind the sofa...........the first one I can actually remember was The Green death where you literally turned green. I also remember The Pyramids of Mars which featured some rather entertaining mummies whose method of murder involved squashing you to death between their manyl chests!!! It turns out my godmother's husband played the baddie in it...........gonna have to watch it again! Then it was time for all little girls to have bathtime and go to bed, hopefully with a story made by daddy about Drogg the dragon. Those were the days.
Happy memories everyone.


  1.'ve really taken me on a journey of children's TV nostalgia there,Jo.
    So sad that Playschool is no longer with us....but even sadder [for me] is that I actually remember Andy Pandy and The Woodentops as well!!

  2. Oh yes - kids' TV *nostalgic sigh* Amy did that to me, too! Some of my memories overlap with yours, but I'd forgotten so much... Bagpuss was one of my faves, dear old catpuss :-) Must delve into the deepest (but not darkest, ahem) recesses of my memory and maybe do a post of my own!

    Thanks for sharing xx

  3. Oh, Jo..that was wonderful! I love a bit of nostalgia as you know and I enjoyed that so much. I loved Jackanory :) Thanks for finding those lovely Playschool photos too. Great post.

  4. This is such a cute post Jo. I don't recognise many but it's given me an idea for a blog post of my own. Loved catching up with your blog, can't wait to meet u either!!! xxx Hope you are feeling better now after piggy flu!

  5. Banana Splits .... hehehehe too funny, we had that as well - actually, most of our shows originated in the UK. Was Playschool our version or do you have UK actors and UK themes .... sounds as though you did.
    The channel Playschool is on has lovely shows, great themes and no violence and no adverstising .... we have deliberately kept our children's tv viewing pretty juvenile - they don't need anymore exposure to violence than what they will already be facing. We have not even taken our eldest to the cinema yet ... we are in the minority.

  6. Ahh, Woodentops - Spotty Dog... Clangers, Bagpuss, Pogles' Wood, Banana Splits, Belle and Sebastien, White Horses, Singing Ringing Tree (remember that?).... ah, I could go on and on...

    And Amy, we didn't take J. to the cinema much at all. We went to see "Thomas and the Magical Railway" first, then didn't go again for years.
    J. only watched tv or videos under carefully controlled conditions too (and still does really).
    You're so right about violence etc. I also object strongly to overly sexual images being pushed into kids' faces. Girls with almost no clothing, waggling their bums or boobs (or both!) into the camera... Why? How are they supposed to learn about balanced, normal relationships , if they get such over-the-top images and such muddled messages from the tv? I want J. to grow up to treat others with respect. How can he believe women want to be respected if he gets this sort of stuff shoved down his throat? For that matter, how can Girls believe it? Same goes for tv soaps, with over-dramatic plots that don't reflect real life at all.
    Hmm, sore subject for me... I'm not a prude, but I def. dont' approve... Give me Bagpuss any day!!
    Thanks Jo, for a great post.

  7. TV in general is less gentle than it used to be - it's not just children's tv. Everyone has become used to adrenalin filled, action packed filming and would rate anything else as boring. Just try watching programmes you used to love as you were growing up - they're so slow. Even *shock* The A Team!!!

    Still, I fondly remember Let's Pretend (no-on else ever remembers it) Cities of Gold and Phileas Fogg. *sigh*

  8. I don't remember Let's Pretend.... (Sorry, Claire!) But YES - Cities of Gold, Phileas Fogg, loved them :-) And Rentaghost, Why Don't You?, Littlest Hobo, Press Gang....

  9. was let's pretend with itsy and bitsy the spiders, im not sure.
    Jo xxx


Hello and thank you so much for stopping by. It is always a pleasure to read the comments I receive and to meet new friends. I try and reply to comments on friend's blogs as much as possible. I hope you have enjoyed reading my blog and look forward to seeing you here again soon. Love Jo xxx