Return to Womble Lovers' Front Door (site index) -- Womble illus. by Johanna Cormier

Womble Lovers Memories and Stories.

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Cameron:

[recalling the song from the TV show]
"Wombles are wimbles wombling free... the Wombles of wimbledon common are we.... making good use of the things that we find.... things that the everyday folks leave behind....

"I remembered the other day that the Wombles song doesn't start with Wombles are wimbles... it starts with Underground overground wombling free... the Wombles of wimbledon......blah nblah.. etc. so you'll have to change it..."

Underground, overground, wombling free
The Wombles of Wimbledon Common are we
Making good use of the things that we find
Things that the everyday folk leave behind.

[recalling a book he had as a kid]
"ok the book was a paperback picture story book and the make it more exciting they attached a piece of plastic on a string to the front cover so you could use it on all the pictures.... anyway the plastic was sorta blurry and so were the pictures in the book so when you moved it across the page with the picture of a Womble or whatever it would appear to make the Womble move around...."

Morton:

"Kids TV series, a number of 5 minute episodes with cute, furry little Wombles. And I used to see her [Elisabeth Beresford's] name on the credits; never knew she wrote a book about them though!

"Orinoco was always my favorite.

"A bit more about the TV version. Probably made around 1972. Each ep was 5 mins long and shown from 5:35 p.m. to 5:40 p.m. to herald the end of Children's Programming on the BBC. It was followed by the national news until 6 p.m. The same slot was variously held by other shows over the years, the most famous of which was most certainly The Magic Roundabout.

"Noremac's second version of the song is the correct one. It goes on describes each Womble, but I can't remember any more words than you already have. :("

Gayle Remisch

"I have searched far and wide for a Womblesite! Thank-you Thank-you, it's great. I was afraid I was going to have to start one myself but this way if you don't mind, when I get my site going I'd love to put your site as a link?"

[Start it soon! We can't have too many Womble sites. And link away, it's like burrowing Womble tunnels from Womble den to Womble den. :) ]

"I have (from used bookstores) acquired two books one is the Wandering one and the other my daughter has lost somewhere in the depths of her bedroom... She loves them too."

[Ooh, I wish I could find some more of the books. Unfortunately I haven't found any really good used bookstores here in Pittsburgh.]

[Thanks again, Gayle, for pointing out Tonia's Womble page.]

Nigel Mulvey

"How the memories came folding back when I saw your Womble page. My brother and I grew up in Wimbledon, in fact our back garden backed onto the common. I was a little too old at the time but my brother was REALLY into the Wombles at the time. He had three or for Womble albums if I recall correctly and his bedroom was absolutely covered in posters. Another thing I remember was that all of his friends used to go onto the common and drop a heap of litter then hide in a bush and wait for a Womble to come and collect it, needless to say Wimbledon Common got covered in litter (the Wombles were obviously wise to the game). Anyway, that was some time ago, I've got kids of my own now and they love the stories too. My only regret is that I don't know what happened to those records.

"I live in Sydney, Australia now and some months ago I heard "SuperWomble" being played as Muzak on Central Railway Station:

"In the middle of Manhattan while the whole town sleeps, there stands a lonely figure he's the guardian of the streets, (can't remember the next line), you know he's Super Womble 'cos his name is on his chest.
He can fly, he can swim, he's a hero, he's got x-ray eyes""

Neil Martin's "tale of Wombling intrigue."

"When I was about 6 or 7 my sister used to live on Wimbledon Common and whenever I went round to her house I used to sit and gaze out of the window to see if I could see them! My sister would say that she had seen one last week and I was certain that I would see one too. Of course, I now realize that my sister was just using this as an excuse to keep me quiet for 45 minutes, but it was still a good game.

"btw, I used to have the Wombles record (remember you're a Womble) but I'm not sure where it is now. It was ded good."

[You all make me wish I could have played on the Commons and searched the bushes for Wombles. :-)]

Christian Schneider

"I live in germany and I am - you may not believe it - 35 years old and still like to listen to the Wombles.

"Though I normally use to play older rock band records I am still looking for some Womble-cds or Womble records.

"When I was younger I bought 2 Womble singles and two albums during my holidays in the UK. Sorrowfully no records have ever been sold in germany. Can YOU help me and tell me where I can order Womble records NOW? Are they still sold in Great Britain?"

[Alas, It seems all Wombles albums have been discontinued. I think our only hope now is to scour the used record shops.]

"By the way, I'm working as a geologist and doing so, I sometimes feel like burrowing Womble holes in the ground ;)"

[Cute.]

Frederick W. Harrison

"Another Wombles fan! I've been a fan in a big way since Nov. 19, 1976, although I was aware of them as a pop band since September 1974 when I recalled seeing their single with picture sleeve at Sam The Record Man on Yonge Street in Toronto. Didný think much of them then, but fell head over heels for them two years later.

"I made the pilgrimage to Wimbledon ten years ago this month [ed. i.e. June 1986] as part of a two week holiday in England. I had booked a room in a bread & breakfast not far from the Wimbledon tube station, which is about three miles from the Common. Nice weather, so I decided to head to the Common and found a homemade Womble in an Oxfam shop along the way. Since I had brought along a tripod and a timer for my camera, I was able to take my picture alongside the little furry fellow, as well as a few shots of him (Orinoco) by himself peering out from among the luscious green growth. (What's a vacation if you can't have a little fun?) I even "tidied up" a bit of the Common along the horse trails and so did my bit to Help Keep Britain Tidy.

"A week later I returned to London and checked out Hyde Park - didn't see any deer (or Wombles, for that matter) but I found it quite unusual to find such an oasis in the middle of such a bustling city!

"While in Wimbledon, I found out than none other than Elisabeth Beresford was scheduled to make a personal appearance at the local library a week later from when I had planed to leave. She and her husband were returning from the Commonwealth Games in Edinburgh (I was going to Edinburgh the following week...)and were stopping over in Wimbledon (a visit to the Burrow, perhaps?) on the way back home in the Channel Islands. I wrote her a short letter thanking her for writing the stories and asking her if there was any particular reason she had not written about any Canadian Wombles in her books. (Canada does get mentioned in the first book as Cousin Yellowstone recounts his journeys, but the picture presented of the country is one of ice and snow! Not fair!)

"A month later I received a reply from Elisabeth! In it she stated that the reason she had never written about Canadian Wombles was that she only wrote about those countries she had personally visited, so as to present as accurate as description of life and customs as possible. (We'll ignore the stereotyping in "Wombling Free"...) Since she had never been to Canada, she didn't feel comfortable writing about life there.

"But there was a special bonus! While in Wimbledon, she received a request from one of the local papers for a short Womble story. With this request, her experiences at the Edinburgh Games, and my letter in mind she wrote a short story relating the Visit of Cousin Ontario to Wimbledon and was gracious enough to send me a copy.

"Cousin Ontario was an very athletic Womble, patterned after (in)famous Canadian sprinter Ben Johnston. His visit to Wimbledon was a whirlwind affair, but made for an interesting short story. There was no illustration to accompany it, as far as I know.

:> (that's a Womble face!)"

[Thank you, Frederick, for the tons of information and especialy for the Discography information.]

Colin Epstein

"On a whim, I did a web search on the word "Womble" just to see if any body else knew about this beloved piece of my childhood. Your page was delightful surprise! Reading snippets of other folks' Womble memories was such a treat. Since I was born and bred in LA, I didn't know anybody outside of my family who had ever heard of Wombles. It was nice to know I wasn't the only kid in the US who'd met the Wombles. Those stories and characters were a huge part of my childhood, and their effect has yet to wear off. Here are some of my Womble memories (Warning: there are a lot of them).

[Not only someone else in the USA but both in LA. Cool.]

"When I was about eight (in 1976), my mother gave me a copy of Elisabeth Beresford's "The Wombles" and I was entranced. I immediately latched onto the young, pushy Bungo as my favorite. I read it several times, until names like Tomsk, Tobermory, Madame Cholet and Orinoco became as well known to me as those of my family. My mom must have found out about the other books in the series and starting getting them for me, one by one.

"About this time there was a major Wombles craze going on in England thanks to the TV show that had just come on the BBC. British kids were apparently Wombles-mad, and as a result there was a ton of Wombles stuff being made and Ms. Beresford was writing more books.

"My mom found out about this flood of Womble paraphernalia and started to get some through a Anglophile shop in LA. She also tracked down the records by Mike Batt, who had done the TV music and found himself sitting on a gold mine. As these items started turning up at home, our household Wombles mania accelerated, which led to the hunting down of more stuff. My little sister loved the characters, especially Madame Cholet, and my mom thought they were terrific, and no doubt approved of the pro-environment stance of the books. So no effort was spared to hunt down Womble paraphernalia. The zenith of this craze was a Christmas morning where my sister and I found a huge box full of Wombles toys. The box sported a tag that read "To: Colin and Lisa. From: The Wombles." I remember quite vividly bouncing around the room, elated to discover that the Wombles knew about us as well! As a result of all this, I ended up with a virtual library of all the Wombles books, all the records, and a large number of toys, most of which I still have.

"The books are simply delightful. There were a number of different types published. These included the main series of books by Ms. Beresford, a number of picture books for younger readers, a series of "annuals" (Large hardbound picture books that featured a mix of stories, activities, and comics, and which came out once a year. Just about every popular character in England got an annual.), and some kids magazines and comics. Most of these were illustrated by Margaret Gordon (who drew them quite differently after the first book to match the puppets in the show). Some were illustrated with photos of the TV puppets, and one collection of stories featured nice drawings by Ivor Wood, who was the designer and animator of the TV Wombles. The annuals contained painted illustrations by a number of artists.

"I think the best of the books is the first. It's the most complex and satisfying, in which we are introduced to the Wombles of Wimbledon Common via young Bungo's first year as a working Womble. The rest that followed were a tad simpler and sweeter, but delightful nonetheless. There was a time when I knew all the titles and their chronological order, but time takes its toll (though I know exactly where the books are on their book shelf at home). There is one of the main series, "The Wombles Go Round the World," that I didn't see listed on your site's bibliography. It details the adventures of two teams of Wimbledon Wombles (Bungo & Orinoco and Tomsk & Wellington) who travel in hot air balloons to meet other Womble clans all over the world. It's one of the least plausible, but was one of my favorites as a kid. If you'd like, I can check my collection for other unlisted books to add to the site. A few years back, the shows came back on British TV and Puffin Books re-issued the main series in paperback. This may make them easier to find. A good children's book store in the US may even be able to order them from Puffin.

[I'm always glad to get more details to flesh out the Wombles page. Thank you.]

"The records were a blast. There are about 5 albums of songs. They contain a fairly eclectic mix of music, centering on Beatles-esque rock, but ranging out to include chicago blues, rockabilly, big band swing, surfer tunes and even reggae (!). Some are flat out weird. Most seem to focus on Orinoco, (presumably Mr. Batt's favorite,) but just about every Womble character got their signature tune. I still have all the LP's (though I'd like to find another copy of "SuperWombling," which is pressed off center, so it has always sounded odd). The jackets sported amusing photos of people in huge Womble suits, usually playing instruments. Many of the songs are exceedingly catchy and I can see how they could make the charts in conjunction with a general Wombles craze. (The UK charts are about the most bizarre in the world to this day.) The lyrics are usually witty and almost always tied well to the character they're discussing. That was really important to a kid who knew the little creatures inside and out.

"There were tons of Womble toys made. The ones that found their way across the pond to our house in Hollywood included plush toys, little figurines, wind-ups, a friction powered car (alas, not a faithful reproduction of the Silver Womble), a beautiful series of marionettes by Pelham Puppets, tote bags, a child-sized umbrella, soap, shampoo, bubble bath, and other goodies I can't remember. In an odd turn of events, the US toy company KnickerBocker (the now defunct creators of all those Holly Hobbie dolls) licensed the Womble characters and briefly made a small assortment of plush toys. These were much more polished than the British equivalents. Unfortunately, we only ever found one of them, Wellington, and letters to the company only resulted in the news that all their stock was sold, and they wouldn't be making any more. I'd love to know the story behind those toys.

"There was even a Wombles feature film, "Wombling Free." Since she was programming a series of kids films for an LA film festival, my mom even managed to bring this over from England. It's not very good, unfortunately. It's directed by Lionel Jeffries, who helmed the British kids' classic "The Railway Children" and stars David Tomlinson, the stuffy dad from "Mary Poppins." Despite these talented people, it fails in following the spirit and some basic concepts of the books. It does some feature some beautiful, if stiff, Womble costumes. The little person in Bungo is none other than Kenny Baker, who "played" R2-D2 in the Star Wars films. The strongest moments are the musical numbers, using Mike Batt's songs. The best of these takes place when they visit a deserted old movie theater, which leads to a series of parodies of classic movie musicals. I spotted it in the TV guide a few years ago, running at 2 am on a independent station. I recorded it, and now can enjoy the jarring sensation of watching a Wombles movies interspersed with ads for things like the Hot Girl Party Line!

[Truly bizarre. :>]

"Perhaps the most hugest Wombles phenomenon, the TV show, is one that has escaped me almost completely. It was never brought over to the States that I know of. I found a tape of a few episodes with an annoying American narration in a video store about 7 years ago. That's been my only glimpse of the show. There were a few very mysterious sightings of Wombles on TV. I once saw a bunch of Womble suited people dancing to one of the Wombles tunes on Captain Kangaroo! Since I didn't watch that show regularly, I have no idea what they were doing on it, or how often that happened. Perhaps the oddest sighting was ages ago on some silly special that took place at one of the Six Flags theme parks. To my amazement, Wombles were among the costumed characters running around in the background. What the deal with _that_ was, I've no idea.

"As a kid, I spent hours playing Wombles (with friends who had never read the books, but were happy to pretend at being Tomsk or Wellington nonetheless), drawing Wombles, building an intricate cardboard burrow for some little figurines (complete with tiny cardboard instruments so they could play all those songs), and many other Womble-inspired activities, not the least of which was picking up litter. While all this waned over the years, the Wombles remained a small part of my life. When my mom finally got her first car (in her thirties!), the license plate said "A WOMBLE". In seventh grade, I gussied up a book report with a huge, complex plasticine diorama of Wombles on Wimbledon. When I finally got to England shortly after graduating college, one of the places I simply had to see was Wimbledon Common. It's a huge, wild, beautiful place. Not at all the carefully tended municipal park I'd always imagined. Seeing the Windmill and the Queen's Mere and other landmarks mentioned in the books was a quiet but powerful thrill. On a more recent trip to England, I was delighted to stumble across some Womble refrigerator magnets in a cheesy gift store near Piccadilly Circus. Now, twenty years after reading that first book, I'm a special effects artist helping to put together a sci-fi epic on a computer named Bungo.

"For reasons I can't explain, the Wombles formed a hugely influential part of my growing up. Something about this odd mythos of tidy, unseen creatures trying to stop humans from drowning in their own trash struck a chord with that little kid who was me. Their impact seems to be somewhat permanent. Why else would I write this silly epic you just read? I hope some of this was informative or at least interesting. If you have any Womble questions you think I could answer, please feel free."

[These stories keep getting longer and better. :>]

Sam

"Incidentally did you know the Wombles were inspired in part by the Art students at the college in Wimbledon (where I recently graduated) as they scavenged materials for their work."

Matthew Hancock (and Dad, Gordon)

"BIG!

"But, to add for your ever growing list of Wombles Fans, you have to include me!

"I'm 13 and don't know much about the wombles (apart from the TV Series, the Movie, and the Album) but my Father's pleased that such old blokes deserve a place on the 'Net."

[Well, here you are guys! :>]

Patrick Wigfull

"I was feeling rather nostalgic today, and for some reason the word "Womble" entered my mind. Entering the term into Alta Vista, I was pleased to see a Womble Site on the Web (and about bloody time too!) I was born and raised in the U.K. and haven't heard head nor tail (do they have tails?) about the Wombles for many many years. I never read the books (although my sister was a big fan), but I was terribly fond of those five-minute animated programmes by Ivor Wood, voiced by Bernard Cribbens (what memories!) I still have my ancient copy of "Wombling Songs" lying around (my favourite song being "Wellington Womble".. yes, I know.. how cliche).

"Thanks for the memories.. I even recall seeing "The Wombles" appearing live on Top of the Pops (although I suspect these weren't the real Wombles, only actors/musicians dressed up in Womble suits... I think the Wombles were much smaller, and were probably busy collecting rubbish).

"If you have any of the Wombles' e-mail addresses, could you let me know? (I would think that at least Tobermory is on the 'Net by now)."

[An interesting idea. I agree, by now Tobermory must have internet access. Here's a thought, will the young wombles like Bungo begin to write programs that will randomly pick their name from geographical locations intstead of closing their eyes and pointing randomly? Nah. Well if the Wombles ever find their way to these pages I hope they enjoying the pages as much as we all obviously enjoy remembering them.]

James P. Selby

... "my band, located near London are so influenced by the wombles that we are called Shuffle and in our live set play the Womble shuffle."

Mark Dawson

Mark Dawson is a DJ in the UK. In 1996, he had a program where he played
"what are conceived to be the worst records of the 70s but are in fact the best!"

"I love The Wombles albums, I'm 28 and I've played them to anyone who'll listen for the past five years.

"Now I can get to DJ Wombles records too.

"Incidently, Wombles LPs are fairly easy to get hold of over here at car boot sales. Normally they cost well under one pound but the condition isn't always that great."

Christine Szikla

"Came across your site from a Puppetry page and just wanted to let you know that it's not often I find a site that pulls at my heartstrings like yours did... ;'-) My first Wombles experience was in primary school. We had the most wonderful librarian whose name was Mrs. Bourke and she was always decorating the library with pictures, pin-ups and superb book displays - it was truly an exciting place for me. I was a prolific reader and whenever I was at a loss for something interesting, she'd know exactly which shelf of books to show me... She was the one who recommended that I read "The Wombles" series. I also enjoyed watching them on the tele and listening to their songs! :-) Now that I've downloaded "Minuetto Allegretto" I have my favourite Wombles song to keep forever! Thanks so much for rekindling long forgotten childhood memories and may Wimbledon Wombles fill your heats also... :-)"

Dorothy & Sandy Teague

"We were introduced to the wonderful childrens books of the Wombles when our three children became the only American student at the local school in the village of Burwell, Cambridgeshire in the spring of 1972. They immediately became a favourite toy of the children who asked if their Mother would make each of them a furry, loveable, Womble.

"Our children grew up with the Womble toys and it was a sad day when the family returned to the United States in the winter of 1979 only to find that the little furry, loveable animals were lost at sea. Alas, never to be seen again.

"Since those days, the children have grown into adults with children of their own. Since England remains in the heart and soul of our children through the many lifelong friends and infrequent trips back home (?), they have once again asked their Mother to make the magic for the Grandchildren through the Womble animals.

"Now that I have led through the woods, I will cut to the chase. I have contacted McCalls Carefree Pattern Company to locate the Pattern Kit (McCalls Carefree No. 4780), only to learn that pattern remains about one year before being discontinued. Also the numbers are re-issued as needed. Do you have any information that would be helpful in obtaining the pattern kit for the Womble Animals? If so, several children and one Grandmother would be forever grateful and a frequent visitor to your website. We have travelled all over the wonderful world of the United Kingdom and have visited with many wonderful people, but no Womble pattern were to be found."

Simon "Glastonbury" Bennett

"I thought it was only courtesy that I wrote you to tell you that I too have been afflicted rather severely with a love for the wombles. This is only just lately though.. which is very strange. I have a Womble character on a MU* called FurryMUCK [See the mud page] which is fun to play as, not to mention a bit of a challenge. Also I'm an artist (aspiring artist) and I've been trying to draw wombles for the past couple of months without much success.

"Videos and books are both hard to come by around here (Australia) but I'm praying that the ABC (who showed the wombles shows before..) will show them again in the near future. The very notion of making useful things out of junk was a BrainWave From Hell [tm] and being a musician as well who likes found sound (that is going up to non-musical objects and deriving music from them) I can respect that. That is what my own personal Womble character is, a musician. :)

"I thought of something the other day which gave me a small aneurysm of joy.. what if there were another bunch of wombles that got their names from discarded sports equipment? :) You'd have Slazenger and Spalding womble.. or how about food? A Womble called Cola.. strange. Think it could happen within the confines of Elisabeth Beresford's Womble Logicities? I'd think so. Just an idea. In addittion to music and digi-art I like to write stories too, and the thought of a second central Womble clan would be interesting to work on. Or maybe it'd be rewriting a bible of sorts. I don't know. I think it'd be educational to try.

"Rambling? Possibly. Just another Womble fan, I suppose. With ants in his pants."

Kevin Macadam

"My name is Kevin Macadam and I am 30 years old and live in Hessle, England.

"I have a 22 month old daughter called Rachael and recently I have started to read The Wombles Book to here as they were always a favourite of mine when I was younger.

"As a joke I put the word Wombles on the Yahoo serach engine and I am overjoyed that there is so much interest in the Wombles."

Martin Coule

"I don't know how relevant this is to you, but the Wombles were a huge hit here in the seventies. I even remember accompanying my sister to a Wombles show. I think it might have been in Swindon but I was very young - less than 12 anyway."

[Neat. Could you tell me more about the show and what you remember?]

"Wish I could, it was a long time ago. One thing that does stick firmly in my mind is the fact that I couldn't see the show - I'm very short-sighted and for some reason didn't have my glasses (I was always breaking them)."

Toby Everett

"Just thought I'd let you know I put a link to your page on the page that explains my name (my first name happens to be Tobermory). I was named before we knew about Wombles, but while I was born my Grandmother was in Britain and came back with, you guessed, Wombles stuff, including some posters that were on my wall for years. In fact, my Mother's room still has a copy of a poster showing Great Uncle Bulgaria speaking to all the Wombles pinned up over her window to keep the light out.

"Oh, the page with the link is http://tua.arctic.net/tua/tobermory/tobermory.html."

Cynthia Mullett

" I recently have been reminicing over my childhood and in particular some of my favorite teachers. I had one teacher in fifth grade, Mrs. Babcock, who I thought was the best teacher in the world (and it wasn't only due to her doll which occasionally concealed a bag of candy for the class :) I particularly recall her introducing us to the Wombles and their songs. She even had a "fort" built in a corner of the room walpapered with posters of the Wombles, a doll which if I recall corectly was Uncle Bulgeria and a record player ("Hey! What's a record?" my son is asking :) which played some of the records she had collected on her return trips to her home of England.

"My 11yo son is already facinated about these creatures and is asking me to look up the book in the library -- I think a new family "tradition" is beginning from an old memory of mine :)"

Jenny Delaney

"I stumbled across the Discworld MUD and discovered the Womble addiction!

"As I have been known to use Womble as a pseudonym when I need one, I was doubly thrilled to discover two of my addictions combined.

"I can't drive past Wimbledon common without the theme tune from the TV show going through my mind - in fact, my friend and I used to sing it together at school back in Ireland, mainly to annoy and embarrass her younger sister."

Johnny Toast

"I'm in a band called "cinnamon toast" based smack dab in-between Baltimore and Washington, D.C. At one point we used to cover "Superwomble", but now that the band has changed members, we no longer do it."

[I asked Johnny how he discovered the Wombles here in the United States.]

"There was one album officially released over here, and I found a promo copy of it when I was about 13 or so. Thought they looked much like our Banana Splits, and since I always liked bubblegummy and glammy stuff, I bought it. Man, Mike Batt was a genius with that sweet sounding Beach Boys-esque stuff. Have made various trips to london in the past few years, but haven't been too lucky finding wombles things. Bought a video the last time I was there, but now I have to get my friend with the PAL video player and monitor to loan it to me so I can watch the video I own. I'll see those wombles yet."

Frederick W. Harrison

[Here's a new story from Frederick, which I couldn't help but add.]
"Oh yes, I made my solo singing debut at our church talent night last Sunday - singing "Minuetto Allegretto"! (Didn't require much preparation to learn the piece :) ). Of course, I had to provide a brief explanation of what Wombles are before I sang the piece and surprisingly some of the children already knew of them! Well received and it brought many words of encouragement from my fellow choristers to try it again, no doubt with a more serious piece of music."

"You'll be tickled to know that my version of "Minuetto Allegretto" was so successful that I was asked to do another Womble song for our choir party on Feb. 12. I thought I'd do something that explained more fully what Wombles were and so chose "The Wombling Song". Our choir director accompanied me on piano again and another choir member played clarinet on the instrumental passage that precedes each verse - not an easy thing to do as the music was in the key of G and he had to transcribe it for a B flat instrument. I brought along one of my Womble dolls as visual accompaniment (one Womble is worth a thousand words attempting to describe one to someone who doesn't know) and a cloth "tidy bag" and Tilley hat for myself to add more "character" to the song. Again, well received, but the Three Tenors have nothing to fear ...yet. One woman who grew up in England said I had the accent down pat - which was strange in that I don't recall singing it with a deliberate accent."

Rita Sewell

"Here's another daft American Womble lover! I happened on the Wombles in the early 80's when we lived in Alaska. The cable network, Showtime, ran some of the shows in the afternoons and I taped them for my daughter who was just a baby at the time. However, I ended up loving them more than she did! We did watch them quite a bit, though. Then I picked up some of the books on our one and only trip to London a few years ago. I would love to find more collectible things, but I imagine they are a bit hard to find here. Maybe we'll hear of more things coming up with the 25th anniversary."

[Cool, so they have been shown in the USA.]

Rob Jones

"After all the waiting they're finally back! Having watched the Wombles this afternoon I am pleased with what I saw. My memory of how the old series was is vague as I probably haven't seen them since I was 6 or 7. However, they're back and I have it on good authority they're going to be Big again. My nephew, who is 3 years old, tells me that the Wombles are better than the teletubbies and this surely means they're set to bury those: eh-oh-ing weirdos in another UK wave of Womble mania."

RJ Harris

"Surely, Wombles are in no way related to bears (they are too small for a start). I have always considered them to be a branch of the hedgehog family that became genetically isolated due to the busy roads that run around each side of the Common.

"Just thought I'd point that out to another individual with obvious good taste."

Patty Breen

"I must have listened to the Remember You're A Womble album four times a day as a child. A close friend of my parents who hailed from England (I'm American) gave me the record as a birthday gift when I was about four years old (circa 1976-1977). I became so addicted to flamboyant fuzzballs that the same acquaintance began sending me stuffed Womble dolls which hold esteemed positions on my bed to this very day (I think they were hand-sewn from a published sewing pattern).

"I never actually saw a televised stateside Womble until around 1980 when they began making sporadic guest appearances on The Captain Kangaroo Show (which was a rather popular children's show of that day).

"At any rate, everyone I've grilled concerning The Wombles looks at me as if I had geckos creeping out from my armpits, so it's great to see so much information on my favorite furry friends.

"Oh, and just so you know that I have "kept the faith", I used to play Womble tunes on my college radio broadcasts (as recent as 1994)."

Joe Zlomek

"I was referred here by a friend, with whom I graduated from Utica (N.Y.) College of Syracuse University in 1977. He, and it, are my only connection to the Wombles, producing this quick memory:

"We were disk jockeys and producers at the college radio station, WEDJ-FM (now WPNR-FM) when "Remember You're A Womble" hit the stores. 'EDJ was a typical college station playing progressive rock of the day. Like most, it received free copies for airplay. The tune was catchy, the lyrics were a hoot, and we had abundant airtime to fill. So for a week we fit the lyrical tag line into everything we could: station promos, between-song fills, commercials; we once even used it as an outro trailer for the 6 p.m. news. Listeners revolted, we almost got thrown out of the station, and they confiscated our copy of the record. After that, we Wombled no more. But now, both at age 43, we're still laughing over it."

Steve Kirwin

"You've invoked lots of childhood memories. My younger brother Adam, was a big fan of the Wombles when he was growing up. He had all the books records and toys, my parents could lay their hands on/ afford. He used to bug me singing their songs when ever he could, and used to throw tantrums if he wasn't allowed to watch the T.V. program when they were on. So our family had to endure them as well. I say endure because it was very untrendy to admit to liking the show as a teenager.

"However looking back the show was great! I caught the new series just released last month, on T.V. . And although its not the same without Bernard Cribbins, I have even bought the first released Video tapes of the series, for my daughter I might add (because its still untrendy to admit being a Womble fan!)

"To this day I still try to follow the 3'R's ethos of the Wombles. (Reduce, Reuse, Recycle) So you could say I'm a real life Womblist. I might come out of the closet yet!

"In reply to PATRICK WIGFULL Wombles on the net...(They are! But they have to use human names to avoid drawing attention to themselves!) And they had to move some of the clan from Wimbledon in England, to Machynlleth in Wales. They have set up a Centre to try and teach us Humans to mend our ways. Tobermory has set their web site up at WWW2.CAT.ORG.UK. Its well worth a visit."

Robert Madsen

"My name is Robert Madsen. I am a 37 years old german salesman and I am a Womble lover since I was 13. I never had the chance to read Ms.Beresfords books. But I saw the old Series on german TV. And much more: I liked Mike Batt's music from the very first minute.

"I had my first encounter with the Wombles when they appeared in the break of the 1974 eurovision song contest in Brighton (where ABBA won). While the juries were discussing their points british TV showed these guys in costumes singing their Wombling songs. From the first line I was hooked by this funny creatures and the wonderful music of Mike Batt.

"I remember that I thought this song was much better than all the others in the contest. I wrote down the name of this funny group and decided to go to the record stores on monday to find the single.

"Unfortunately none of the german shops were able to order it. But suddenly: In a hidden shop in Hamburg (Germany) I found the "Wombling songs" longplay and a few years later the "Superwombling" Album. It felt like Wellington collecting engine numbers at Waterloo. I heard the records over and over again until the vinyls were scratchy. The enclosed lyrics sheets helped me to learn english and improve my marks at school.

"As far as I remember the Wombles were in the charts in late 1974 with a german version of "Remember you're a Womble". The song was called "Die Wombles sind im kommen" and they appeared on german TV on the "Disco 1974" show (hosted by Ilja Richter).

"I always tried to find more longplays of the Wombles in Germany and when I heard "Wombling merry christmas" on the radio I tried to find the single here. In vain.

"So I bought each Mike Batt Album hoping that he would show the same ingenuity in his solo projects. But most of them were boring. But with "The hunting of the snark" he reminded me of his first works with the Wombles and since then I hoped for a time when somebody would re-release the old records on Compact Disk. But I had to wait.

"And now, 24 years later: When I recently surfed through the internet I stumbled into a mailorder-shop where I found (surprise!) the CD "The best wombles album so far Vol.1". I ordered the record at once. When the CD arrived five weeks later I was glad to see that eight songs were completely new to me. And they are great!!! Now I can't wait to find the Volume 2 in my mailbox to hear more of Mike Batt's work and feel like a teenager again.

"And, what a coincidence: Today I found out that germany's children channel ("Der Kinderkanal") is going to air the new puppet series "The Wombles". Starting at 30th of September 1998 I will witness "The ghost from Wimbledon common"

"I won't have to remember that I'm a Womble.
I always felt being like a Womble."

Jennifer Runacres

"I was really pleased when I found your Womble page, as I myself am a very keen Womble collector. I am 20 years old and remember the Wombles from my childhood, but recently I've taken a very big interest in them again. It all started a while ago now, when I got an old, worn, second hand Womble for a meer 50p... I then discovered he was 'Tomsk' and since that time I have been collecting anything I can find to do with Wombles. I now have ALL of the 'new' Womble teddies and several of the origonals from the 70's including a 14" U.S.A. edition Wellington in perfect condition. I also have a number of old books, records and annuals etc, they're not too difficult to find here in second hand stores and sales. I am always on the look out for any Womble items and any Womble fans to chat with."

Robbie Arkell

"Just to say I loved your site. Thank you. I spent ages looking round trying to piece together the remaining memories of old episodes (very sketchy after all this time) prompted by FHs comments. In fact some of FHs comments made me laugh out loud when I came across scenes I could remember!

"I got to your site because for years now I have had Great Uncle Bulgaria in my head saying 'Ah, Bramble Pudding! Mind the pips!'. Am I making this up or did the Great UB really say it? I gotta know! In Tesco's tonight in front of the nuts and nibbles I thought someone out there must know! The 'sad' thing is I have this insane urge to make said Bramble Pudding! Has Madame Cholet (Elisabeth Beresford) published a cookery book?

"Last week in fact I was on Wimbledon Common and was taken on a 'business lunch' to a pub in the middle of the Common called the Fox and Grapes. For ages I'd been teasing my colleague that the F&G do Bramble Pudding (mind the pips) cos I thought he knew it was a Womble thing! He didn't and asked the food counter if they indeed had 'Bramble Pudding'! He was quite upset that there was no Bramble Pudding for me!! Shame I said, actually sad they didn't! Anyway, must go. Thanks for reading this. Appreciated. I have not seen any of the new series and am living for the next time I hear the signature tune I've not heard since I was 16 (1976!) or so. Aha, but Xmas is just round the corner so perhaps I could buy myself a small, video-shaped parcel ..."

FH: "The episode in question is The Invisible Womble (first series, episode 9, based, of course, on the short story which supplied the title to "The Invisible Womble and Other Stories" book. Mind you, the short story differs in many details from the TV show.)"

[Anyone have a recipe for Bramble Pudding?]

Frederick Harrison

[In response to Our day at Wimbledon Frederick had the following to share about his trip to Wimbledon a few years earlier. In fact, Frederick had told me about this trip, before I made my own, and had provided many wonderfull clues on where to look.]

"Well done! I'm glad you undertook the pilgrimage - I know I'd never forgive myself if I hadn't done it when I went over on vacation. But then I had an extra reason for staying over in London at the beginning of my vacation - the airline had lost my luggage, so I was obliged to wait until they recovered it (from Belgrade, Yugoslavia, no less!). Not the best way to start a holiday - no change of clothes or maps other than London - so the trip out to the Common was a boost to the spirits.

"It looks like you covered quite a bit of ground and saw the many variations of terrain and cover on the Common. It is larger than one would think - certainly large enough for a colony of Wombles to inhabit without being detected. Did you go into the Windmill? It was there that Robert Baden Powell wrote his book on scouting in 1909 - wonder where he got his information for handicrafts, camping out, and living off of the land. :>

"I'm a bit disappointed that there hasn't been some sort of recognition given to the Wombles on the Common - a plaque or even a sculture would be a nice touch.

"Now, as to the Tumulus, I don't think this should be confused with the burrow proper. Most likely it is a mound of earth excavated from the main burrow and placed in such a position as to act as a decoy for curious Human Beings. Besides, it is on Putney Heath - not Wimbledon Common. There is a reference in one of the books to a back entrance to the burrow near Tibbet's Corners which is very near the Tumulus so maybe that entrance lies close by, likely hidden by a bush or shrub. (They're clever, those Wombles...) (BTW the Tumulus was thought to be an iron age burial mound, but excavations proved it wasn't. Just what it *was* is not certain.)

"I've always thought the main entrance to the burrow lies somewhere in the forest between the Windmill and Queensmere. Check out the story "Wellington Almost Meets His Waterloo" in the Womble's Gift Book - the burrow is described as being within sight of Queensmere (certainly the Lake referred to in the new series). A guide to the Common that I purchased at the Windmill museum has a map that shows a mound just south of Queensmere and just by the Wimbledon side of the boundary between the boroughs of Wimbledon and Putney. This mound is almost in the centre of the combined Commons. It's about 600 yards from this mound to the Tumulus, which would make for quite a long burrow and it's within a few hundred yards of the Windmill and Ranger's Cottage. The area around this mound is heavily wooded affording perfect cover from human eyes. Could it be.....? :)

"As to be expected, the Wombles kept themselves well hidden during your visit (except Tomsk - never one for thinking things through, but a good dependable Womble nevertheless). The oft-tried ruse of scattering rubbish and hiding just doesn't work. You might snare Orinoco with a well stocked picnic hamper from Fortnum & Masons (er.. Fortune & Basson) but even he would question the seeming good fortune and approach such a feast with caution, knowing it was too good to be true. The problem with Human Beings is they just don't know how to move quietly - to a Womble the approach of a Human Being must seem like that of a T.Rex in Jurassic Park. Plus there's that "Womble sense" that acts like a radar (and which Dalai Gartok Womble has honed to astonishing precision as we read in "Wombles Go Round The World"). Only the sleeping (Orinoco), very young, or very brave/silly (Bungo) Wombles ever let themselves be seen by adult Human Beings. Young children are more fortunate in Womble spotting, but then no adult or older sibling *ever* believes them. You brought your hedgehog, I brought a toy Womble - and who knows how many Wombles must have watched from the nearby bushes and shrubs, barely able to control the impulse to laugh hysterically. Bet they *still* talk about it... or worse, have passed the story on to other burrows via the womfax and welecom. :)

[The hedgehog in question, Fidella, is indeed a toy but don't tell her that. *wink*]

"Now as to the similarity between Wombles and hedgehogs (er.. was this a real hedgehog you brought or literally a toy?)... there is quite a lot of similarity, but I think in the long run they will be found to be quite different. For one thing hedgehogs are insectivores and/or carnivores; Wombles are herbivores. One thing in hedgehog's favour is that they are not rodents (or porcupines), which is a common mistake people make about Wombles. Rodents have constantly growing teeth and so must gnaw continually on anything and everything. There is no evidence of compulsive gnawing in the Wombles' behaviour or in their burrows so that rules out rodentia as a family. I have always thought that the closest relative to Wombles would be the raccoon - they have dextrous paws, are extremely clever, and have the long pointy nose and fur. But they also have pointy ears and that big bushy tail. Interestingly enough, pandas are thought to be closely related to raccoons, moreso than the bears with which they are usually associated. And the Wombles are "a bit like teddy bears" which suggest something along the lines of a panda hence possibly a raccoon. But all this is mere academic speculation. Great Uncle Bulgaria would be apt to dismiss it by pointing out similarities between humans, chimpanzees, and orangutangs and then challenging us to decide whether humans were either chimpanzee or orangutang. The answer is obvious - humans (and by extension, Wombles) are their own genus, in the same way that the genus homo is quite a distinct creature from the genus australopithecus. Hence a proper genus-species taxonomic designation would be womblus wimbledonae (or some such - I'm not sure which Latin ending is appropriate.) for the most famous Wombles of Wimbledon, with the provision for other Womble species (i.e. Nessie, the Tibetan Wombles)."

Chris Small

"I'm sure I am not the only fan who was aggrieved to see the exploitation of The Wombles by McDonalds in the UK. The linking of one of the world's most cynical despoilers of the environment to eco-friendly Wombles is a travesty which can only diminish the standing of The Wombles and everything they stand for. The sight of children casually strewing Womble Happy Meal containers around the High Street is ironically distressing.

"If you agree with me, I would be interested to hear any ideas you may have to make waves. I have written to The Guardian & Indy but have not been published. I wonder if a campaign could be launched to highlight this matter and hopefully shame the current copywrite holder into making some kind of public statement or at least to think twice about further links with McDonalds."
[Chris has some very interresting points. I had not thought about it in this way. I was particulary excited when I saw Wombles at McDonalds, as I am anytime I get to see them. His letter is here, for your consideration.]

Frederick William Harrison

"I've just had a look at the Womble Lovers site and noted a few new e-mails that I hadn't seen before.

"The first to catch my attention was the one protesting the McDonalds promotion. I was disappointed as well, and not just for the litter problem, but because McDonalds promotes a diet that is detrimental not only to the health of the people who consume it but also the health of the planet as well. (See John Robbins' Pulitzer Prize nominated book "Diet For A New America" for more information - reading it convinced this former meat eater to go vegetarian.) Had McDonalds used the Wombles to introduce a new veggie burger (they've been promising to develop one for years) or promote their salads it would not have been so bad. Even better would be to develop packaging that is more eco-friendly. (Those plastic straws and drink lids are some of the most annoying bits of litter to clean up - they're light enough to be picked up by the wind and blown under bushes and hedges - take it from someone who's done litter collecting in the parks. The only thing worse is the cellophane from cigarette packages!)

"Mind you, the idea of encouraging children (their target audience for this promotion) to become litter conscious is comendable. I just hope McDonalds wasn't doing the promotion in order to create the <impression> that they care about the environment, when the reality of their business practise clearly shows otherwise.

"Ironically, I had written a long letter to Elisabeth Beresford in March of 1998, shortly after the new series was begun, and one of the concerns I raised was precisely the issue of lending the Wombles image to fast food restaurants, specifically McDonalds. This was prompted by the memory of the Wombles being used to promote Wimpeys restaurants (a poor attempt at copying American fast food restaurants for the UK market) in the 70s, which did not pass without comment on it being a contradiction of Womble behaviour as described in the novels ("It was when he tasted the meat that his wild delerium was halted, for Wombles are not carnivorous." from "The Wombles", just after Orinoco has salvaged a crate of pastries from a lorry wreck on the Common.) With the new series having been launched I feared that the inevitable character merchandising might extend to fast food.

"Her reply was as follows "... as long as it makes children laugh and, as you pointed out, aware of <not> just dumping rubbish then that's fine by me." Fair enough.

"I suspect the character merchandising and endorsement is not under her direct control. Cinar and Wombles Ltd. would be the principle forces in this regard and I seem to recall that a fellow by the name of John Hanson runs or own the character merchandising rights for the Wombles, which puts it out of her hands, except for a possible veto on endorsements of questionable taste.

"So... what to do? Why not try writing McDonalds directly, praising them for helping to "keep Britain tidy" by running a promotion with the Wombles, and then questioning them as to what innovations they have made to reduce, reuse, and recycle within their operations? Enclosing McDonalds litter collected from a local park might even spark some awareness as to the negative impact their packaging creates after it has been used and then discarded. Suggest that the local McDonalds sponsor a clean up campaign for the neighborhood with drinks and snacks provided gratis for those who participate. That's a proactive solution and far more productive than carping about the endorsement.

"There is another issue about the promotion and that is whether sweatshops and/or child labour were used to manufacture the dolls (they were made in China, with the paper insert being printed in Hong Kong on recycled paper. Any information in this regard would be most welcome...

"And, for the record, I purchased a set of dolls, along with Happy Meal box, face masks, straw holders and placemat through eBay. So, for better or worse, I've supported the promotion."

Martin Reynolds

"I still have my Wombles tape I bought in the seventies...

"I play it regularly- I now live in Hong Kong and play it on the way to work...

"I am now 34 years old..."

Katja Yeats

"My name is Katja (I go by Katie) and I am originally from Germany. I now live in the US. I used to love "The Wombles" when I was little. In fact, I remember the words of the beginning song for the TV series.
Umwelt faengt an vor der eigenen Tuer,
Wombels sind Wesen, die tun was dafuer.
Leise und freundlich und sauber sind sie,
jeder muss wombeln, denn sonst klappt das nie!

Translated:
Environment begins in front of your door,
Wombles are creatures, that do something for it.
Quiet and friendly and clean they are,
Everybody should do as the Wombles, otherwise it will never work.

"Isn't that cute? I used to have a tape (cassette) with some of their stories on them. I still remember passages from those tapes, I envisioned what things looked like etc."

Rupert

"Hi there from London, I was just looking at your Womble web site and I thought you might be interested in a bit of Womble history you may not know about. My father Ronald Hines read the original Womble storys on a childrens TV series called 'Jackanory' and as far as I know he was the only actor to do weekly episodes."

[Jackanory preceeded the Wombles TV series narrated by Bernard Cribbins.]

Telsa Gwynne

"Was wombl -- er, wandering around your wombles pages on the web after my husband mentioned that he had found a checklist for womble albums we don't yet have :) I don't know whether to be delighted or appalled that there are some we don't have. In common with several of your correspondents, we've both passed thirty and both enjoy wombles music. (I'm a Mike Batt fan generally: the Dreamstone and the Hunting of the Snark are also played to death here.)"

[Telsa also had more information about 'Bullet' which you can read on the Womble Lovers' MUD page.]

"Keep on with the wombling. I enjoyed the pages hugely. I use Lynx as a browser (doesn't do Java or Javascript, doesn't do pictures, has trouble with frames and tables) and it was lovely to find a site that works just as well without all those. I liked the "You're missing a really cool animated horizontal rule" alt tag. Made me laugh :)

"Telsa, off to find Fantasy of a Sleeping Womble.

Tony Womble

"I stumbled on your site. I was in London when the Wombles were a hit TV show, and bought a Womble doll at one of the major department stores. As a Real Womble, I have an affinity with the characters, and am enjoying viewing your web pages.

"I currently live in Atlanta, Georgia. There is a small clan of Wombles centered in Cairo, Georgia. We have an annual Womble family reunion in Cairo each October with an auction of Womble contributions. The proceeds are used to maintain the Womble gravesites at the Pine Branch Baptist Church.

"This probably is not of much interest to you, but just to let you know that there are some walking, talking Wombles still rumbling around."

[Womble actually is a fairly common last name. I ran into it a lot when doing my original web searches for the Wombles of the furry sort. I have also recieved a few requests for Geneology information from people with this name.]

Juanita West

"I hadn't given a lot of thought to the Wombles since childhood, apart from a tendency to hum "Underground, Overground" without thinking. But a colleague needed to know which womble played the violin (none I don't think) so I looked up Womble on Yel.co.uk, got to the Radio Times site, where I found they're showing the Wombles at 3.30ish each Friday on something - LBC I think - and then there was a link to this site. By the way, on my web journey I came across a site with a game called something like Wombles from Hell - I feel fairly sure this isn't official merchandise but times have changed. I did love The Wombles as a child, but I loved Basil Brush and Rhubarb and Custard too. The books were great, and gave me a feeling of burrowing into a cosy, secret world. I was interested to see the TV programmes were only 5 minutes long - doesn't time go slower when you're a child? My memory makes it longer. My only real connection apart from that is that when I was a teenager, I met a girl who went out with one of the Wombles. I can't remember which one though."

Claire Robinson

"The Wombles were always my favourite as a child. I had books, colouring books - anything with a Womble on it - I had to have it!

"I still have my Womble story books that I had as a child and regularly have to go and remove them from the depths of my daughters bedroom.

"I am 31 now and still love the Wombles as much as I did years ago - I even have my very own Orinoco Womble - he was always my favourite! - that I insist on taking to bed with me, much to my husbands disgust!!!!

"The only thing that I am not that impressed with is the new Womble Television programme - it isn't as good as the original but then I suppose we can never go back!"

Charlie Bell

"I lived in Wimbledon until the age of 20, and when I was small used to walk the Common everyday with my father and our dog. Dad used to tell me that the reason we never saw any Wombles was because the dog scared them....

"I'm just writing to relate another womblish tale. Wimbledon Football Club (that's soccer, by the way ;o)   ) have been known as the Wombles for years, as long as I've been aware. In 1988, we won the FA Cup, the final of which is held at Wembley Stadium. There was something just a little surreal about watching 35,000 people singing the Wombles TV theme tune in unison as the team were being presented the Cup...

"Anyway, nice page. Good to see that our little tidying friends are famous all over the world now."

Stephanie Nite

"I just wanted to drop a note and let you know how glad I was to find this site. I was in my daughters bedroom and looked down at my really old Uncle Bulgaria stuffed toy and thought I would see if there was any information. I am glad to know that what I have a vague but fond memory of is actually real. My mom bought my sister and me those toys right before we left England in the 70's. I have laughed and remembered for the last few quiet minutes as all 3 of my children are busy. I hope to find ways to buy the videos here. My children should see them."

Simon Richards (Tobermory)

"Great Site. My wife is one of the world's greatest womble nuts. We have a womble room which at the moment has a number of the Bluebird toy Wombles from the new series, the full set of 1970's UK books, a couple of womble records from the 70's, a G.U.B hot water bottle and a 70's madame cholet pyjama case, Tomsk 1970's car and Womble badges we had to buy through an online auction. She rushes to catch the Tuesday episode here on TV!! This is a women in her thirties going on nine! Anyway, keep up the good work"
[Hmmm... Somehow my husband can empathize. Between my Womble love and my collection of Disney's Beauty and the Beast (which could fill a room if it were not all in boxes) we have a bit in common here.]

John Gathercole

"One last thought; are you aware of the greatest Womble of them all? No, it's not Bulgaria, although he does come close.

"This story had its roots in the dim and distant past, the dark ages in fact. In those days the womble situation was grim indeed. At one point it actually looked possible that the whole race would die out due to overwork (it was really untidy in those days).

"It was only when one particually inventive womble came up with one of the first working vacuum cleaner, and this significantly reduced each wombles workload, meaning that they could tidy up more per womble-hour (thus also ending the dark ages). The wombles were saved!

"As was the custom of the times, the assembled leaders of Wombledom confered, and decided to award the highest honour on their young saviour, the name of their home continent, Europe. Europe Womble wore his name with pride and lived a long life dedicated to litter collection.

"When it was time to go to that great burrow in the sky, the entire race decided to ensure that future generations should never forget their greatest son, and so wrote an anthem to remind them of his greatness.

"It goes like this:

Remember Euro Womble!
(REMEMBER EURO WOMBLE!)
Remember Euro Womble!
(REMEMBER EURO WOMBLE!)
etc etc...

"of course if you've never heard the record this will mean nothing to you - oh well."

Chris Wright

[Chris Wright was the director of The Wombles series 2 (episodes 31-60). He kindly wrote asking if I had any questions for him and of course I sent a quite a few. Here he's shared a memory from the series production.]
"Re: Bernard Cribbins: Hysterics in the Cutting Room
: Worse to come in the Taxi to the Recording Studio
: Studio: Live recording (Usually Take-one)

"You asked me a lot of questions there Johanna, when I get a bit more time I'll compile a list but those sessions were my fondest memories.

"Bernard broke his arm badly while gardening and we had to delay Production until he was well enough for me to collect him from home and drop him off after. He invited me in to meet his Wife who was waiting on the doorstep. I apologised, but said I had to get back to London to sort out stacks of laboratory orders, tidy up the cutting room (I,m notoriously untidy).

"BBC jobs don't pay much so I was able to persuade Peter Beston, of Park Village Productions to put his name forwards for a series of Lego commercials Roger Woodburn was directing at the time, mainly as a 'Thank You' for turning up for work in such terrible pain.

"Needless to say he got the job and I occasionly bumped into him in Soho, usually in a car park between Wardour Street and Dean Street. I left Park Village in 1978 to sort out some contractual problems I had at home in Canterbury."

[I wrote to thank Chris and added another question about Ivor Wood, and here's the suprising information I learned.]

"Ivor Wood was a name we invented. Don't forget this was '74, video was in its infancy, and the bbc was 2 bits short of a few electric television sets."

Estelle Jobson

"Dear Womble-lovers

"What a thrill to discover your site!

"I am a born-and-bred South African and you may be surprised to hear that the Wombles were one of the early children's shows on TV in South Africa. TV only arrived in SA in the early seventies and my family did not have one until the early eighties, so the few womble shows that I caught where while visiting at friends. Yet they made an unforgettable impression on me and never left my memories. So much so that my Swiss-German-born husband (poor soul, who never actually saw The Wombles on telly) has aquired the words 'womble', 'wombling' long' and 'womblish' to his English vocabulary. The phrase 'Are you a womble'?' has come to mean 'Why are you wearing something that makes you look quite so short, round and bearish?' Since the stroke of luck of finding this site, I was able to sing the Womble song for him in German...

"As a child growing up in Africa, I did not know that Wimbledon Common was a real place. I assumed, quite naturally, that it was a fictitious land where Wombles lived and was named after them. Something like Wombleville. I only realised much, much later that it was not quite so. I have always wished that the Wombles (and Rupert the Bear) would come back and visit me, somehow, somewhere. How funny that it is through this wonderful, heartwarming site.

"Keep up the great work, fellow Womble-lovers"

Jacquelyn Shah

"Hello! Just listened to an old record I have from 1974 when I lived in London & saw a stage production of "The Wombles." At the time there was a record with all the music from the play; my husband and seven-year-old daughter, having enjoyed the play immensely, purchased the record and played it hundreds of times through the years. We found it amongst some other old records this Thanksgiving & played it once again. So I decided to type in "Wombles" & see what turned up on the internet. Hence, I was led to your webpage."

[Ooo what fun, that must have been!]

Kellie Adams

"Gidday there I've just found this site and I think it's fantastic. I absolutely love the Wombles and I think they are great. It's a pity that kids in New Zealand don't know what a Womble is today. I know my stuffed Womble soft toy still sits beside my bed after 20 years. "

"OK see ya and keep up the good work from a dedicated Womble fan in New Zealand"

NEW Barb

"Hi, my name is Barb I just wanted to write and say how much I enjoyed your site. I stumbled onto it, and I have to tell you, My mom bought a pattern when I was a kid and made me a stuffed Womble. I had no idea what a Womble was, I was probably about 4 years old, and I didn't know that Wombles came from a story book until I saw your site. I'm now 32 and I asked my mom if she still had the pattern, she said she did and she's making me a Womble for Christmas. I think my Womble was Wellington, but I'm not sure. Well thanks again for bringing Wombles back to my attention."

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You're missing a really cool animated horizontal rule
Disclaimer: The Wombles are (TM) Elisabeth Beresford/Filmfair. I have done my best to keep these pages legal and within the guidelines of fair usage.

This Page Last Updated on September 29, 2009.


© Johanna & Daniel Cormier, 1996-2000
Please address email with 'Womble' included somewhere in the subject line to: johanna@designwest.com
Illustrations by Johanna Cormier, based on Illustrations by Margaret Gordon and Ivor Wood's Puppets