With the shocking news that there will be no Blue Peter Annual this year (see the story here) and the iconic children's TV programme having begun broadcasting from its new home in Salford this week (here), I got thinking about the programme and its part in my life.
|The presenters of my childhood|
And I came to a realisation that the programme, watched twice weekly throughout my childhood, probably had a big impact on the way I turned out!
How else can I explain the fact that I have a large collection of bottletops, cocoa tins and sturdy boxes, awaiting transformation in to something pretty and useful, and that when shopping, I am always on the look-out for the packaging that has recycling possibilities?
Or that I mourn the fact that my Fairy Liquid (Oops! Mustn't mention brand names!) no longer comes in good old-fashioned straight-up-and-down bottles, so useful for turning into all kinds of gifts for Mother's Day, Father's Day and the like?
And the fact that I have to force myself to put the loo roll tube in the bin instead of keeping it to make some miniature Rapunzel Tower, or a useful desk organiser?
Or that I cannot see a plain wire coat hanger without thinking 'I must get me some tinsel and baubles, for those are destined to be an Advent Crown'?
Blue Peter 'makes' were always the highlight of the programme for me (though the historical stories with the fabulous illustrations - Marie-Antoinette being especially memorable - are right up there too). But the problem was, you never had the required items hanging around the house, ready for you to begin creating whilst the method was still fresh in your mind.
For years, I hankered after a 'Jif' lemon...
...to transform into a witch puppet. If I'd ever got round to it, it would surely have resembled a witch with a very bad case of jaundice!
But the one thing I do remember deciding to make was the 'Four Poster Bed' for Sindy. (Actually it was probably for my more favoured Mary Quant 'Daisy' doll...
It must have been the end of the summer holidays, because both my sister and I were going to make one. The key items were a shoebox (Bingo! New school shoes) and a length of dowel. Well, we didn't have that handy, but we pooled together our pocket money and headed into the village to buy a length from the ironmongers (for such shops existed in my village when I was a child).
Dowel came in 6ft lengths. We couldn't afford two, so bought one and headed home to divvy it up and put the junior hacksaw into action.
But in those days, good though we may have been at computational maths, we had not really been taught to use our divisional skills in practical situations. And as 6ft into 8 didn't go (without a remainder), so it was that my sister and I ended up with the world's first 3 poster beds!