Last Sunday myself, Joseph Wallace and Ivor’s son Sean had the pleasure of celebrating Ivor Wood’s work at the BFI Southbank. Huge thanks to everyone that came down and it was great to meet some people who followed the blog. It was great to meet people like Kevin who I’d spoken to in the comments and put faces to names.
The whole event was really well organised and compered by Justin Johnson. Unlike the Manchester event last year we included episodes of Ivor’s work inbetween the talk. We were first joined on screen by The Herbs, The Wombles, Paddington and Postman Pat before Joseph got up and gave us all a run through of Ivor’s career. In 10 quick minutes he managed to detail Ivor’s beginnings at La Comete and the Magic Roundabout through to his time at FilmFair then onto his own studio Woodland Animations. As he rounded up we were treated to episodes from Gran, Bertha and Charlie Chalk before we all took to the stage for a Q&A.
Compered by Justin we talked about what Ivor meant to us as fans and Sean gave some really great detail in what it was like growing up with an animation studio beneath his house. As he explained it was very much the norm and when asked what his dad did for a living he would reply “he plays with dolls”. Sean went onto explain the very different personalities that Ivor had, one being very shy, especially in the limelight but mostly a very eccentric and creative man.
Sadly we weren’t able to film this event as before but we do have the moment a very special guest joined us on stage thanks to my wife. What talk on Ivor Wood would be complete without an appearance from one of his best loved creations…Parsley. Carried all the way from his home in South London by Sean he was revealed to the audience to great applause. This then sparked a great conversation piece where we discuss how the puppet moves and how parts of the sets were made. You can watch it below:
Thanks again to all that came and for those that didn’t we’ll hopefully see you at another event, as I’m sure they’ll be more! I’ll be back to the blog next time so keep those peepers peeled.