Although many know the Wombles from the television series, the series was based on the charming and well-written books that came first, originally published in 1968. Even now the Wombles' songs feature on YouTube, indicating the enduring appeal of these characters. Supported by an innovative publicity and marketing campaign Much beloved by adults, children of today will also respond to the prescient and timely message of recycling that the Wombles live by, whose motto is 'making good use of bad rubbish' Illustrations by Nick Price
Elisabeth Beresford first came up with the idea for the Womble characters when walking on Wimbledon Common with her two children. She started sketching out the characters that day: Great Uncle Bulgaria was based on her father-in-law, Tobermory on her brother (an inventor), Orinoco on her son, and Madame Cholet on her mother. She hoped that the Wombles stories would encourage children to fight pollution and to think up ways of 'making good use of bad rubbish'. In fact, the Wombles so charmed the nation that they were chosen as the mascots for the Tidy Britain campaign. Since then they have had their own television series, first broadcast on Jackanory. Elisabeth Beresford was awarded an MBE for her services to children's literature in 1998 and she now lives in Alderney, the Channel Islands.
'A lively, entertaining and humorous book, stuffed with ingenious ideas and endearing characters' The Times 'Over 40 years after the original book, The Wombles is reprinted, their recycling ways more relevant than ever' Junior 'There's something wonderfully old-fashioned and charming about the "short, fat, furry" creatures. They are simple without being simplistic, innocent without being naive, civic minded for its own sake ' Irish Examiner 'The rubbish collecting eco message has a new resonance' Angels and Urchins