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British TV series
 
       The Pogles of Pogles Wood


  
   The Pogles
  & Pogles Wood

 

   producers:
SmallFilms for the BBC
   animation:
stop-motion animation

    The Pogles                Pogles Wood
    1965 / 6 x 10mins       1966-1968 / 26 x 10mins

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     Amos and Edna Pogle made their home within the stump of a knotty, hollow tree.
     They were little woodland people, friendly earthy folk, tilling the soil and at one
     with their surroundings and with the other woodland creatures like their friend
     The Hedgepig. They  weren't specifically magical, but magic came to visit them
     in the form of Pippin, son of the King of the Fairies who was found in a cot on
     the Pogles' doorstep and became their adopted son. There was also a living
     stuffed toy squirrel-creature called Tog and the storytelling Plant just outside 
     the Pogles' front door who thrived on their bilberry wine. And then, why, in the
     first series there was the splendidly evil Witch who wanted the Pogles' magical
     crown for her own and who would adopt many magical guises to get it...

     Here was another perfectly realised world from the SmallFilms partnership
     of Oliver Postgate and Peter Firmin. Indeed that original series of The Pogles
     was so well realised that the BBC took offence at the fearful antics of the Witch.
     She was deemed far too scary for kids tv, and they asked that she be dropped
     from subsequent series.

      The Pogles Witch - a nasty bit of work!

     With the Witch now gone, the next two series, now titled Pogles Wood
     were a hit with the BBC and these films were broadcast ad-infinitum as part of that
     enduring Watch With Mother TV slot. The characters also appeared in their very
     own Pogles Annuals (1967 - 1974) and Pippin comic strips. The annuals featured
     specially commissioned new colour photos of the puppets, whilst those Pippin
     covers were graced with beautiful Pogles artwork...

     The Pogles films are still extraordinarily watchable today, but your chances of
     seeing them are slim in spite of the renewed and continued interest in those
     other SmallFilms classics, Bagpuss, The Clangers, Ivor The Engine and Noggin
     The Nog. Maybe it's because they were filmed in black and white and hence not
     considered suitable for modern broadcasting, or quite as marketable? Indeed,
     Mr and Mrs Pogle have been off our screens for nigh-on thirty years. How
     shameful, because colour-or-no, the woodland world of The Pogles is just as
     magical as Emily's Shop or the legendary Northlands. as you'll discover if
     you stop by The Dragons Friendly Society web site. These folks are keeping
     the Pogles' stove burning bright with their independent releases, NFT
     screening events and more...

     Tog-tastic!

    
» Oliver Postgate sought inspiration for The Pogles in the gnarled beech trees
         behind his home, The Old Red Lion Pub down near Canterbury, back in the
         early 1960s...

     
» Many can recall Plant's tales about The Pipe-Cleaner Family, although in
         actuality they only ever featured in four episodes. The figures were constructed
         by Peter Firmin's wife Joan...

    
» Plant's other tales included a series of 'documentary' shorts with umbrella
         trees, farmers, carpenters and soldiers and such. These 'real-life' people were
         cast directly from Oliver and Peter's close family of siblings and associates...
     
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      made by SmallFilms

      stories by Oliver Postgate
      puppets and pictures by Peter Firmin
      
      
music:       
Vernon Elliot
      
told by:   
  Olwen Griffiths
                    Steve Woodman
                    Oliver Postgate 


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     On the web


     Pogles Wood 
     This here is the official Pogles site from The Dragons Friendly Society
     and it's a gem. You'll find info on the stories, behind-the-scenes photos
     and information on the restoration. A simple site format belies the depth
     of information on offer. Smallfilms fans rejoice!




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© Oliver Postgate & Peter Firmin / SmallFilms / F2010