WORLD-OBITS-L ArchivesArchiver > WORLD-OBITS > 2007-01 > 1169583847
From: "Peter McCrae" <>
Subject: [W-OBITS] HARGREAVES: Harry Hargreaves
Date: Tue, 23 Jan 2007 20:24:07 -0000
Last Updated: 12:36am GMT 20/11/2004
Harry Hargreaves, who has died aged 82, was a cartoonist who produced "the
bird" for Punch and Hayseeds in the London Evening News; perhaps his most
popular work, however, was his series of drawings illustrating Michael
Bond's Paddington Bear stories for the Blue Peter annuals.
Hargreaves's brisk, mobile, pen and ink drawings of the bear from Darkest
Peru involved close consultation with Bond, and came nearer the text than
other versions; in particular, his snout and button eyes produced the
definitive pictorial representation of the hard stare. In 1980, Hargreaves
was commissioned to produce illustrations for The Wind in the Willows. The
resultant drawings - pitched midway between the versions of Ernest Shepherd
and Arthur Rackham - were enchanting, and the book was reprinted several
Harry Hargreaves was born in Manchester on February 9 1922, the son of a
civil servant. He was educated at Chorlton High School, and at the age of
nine became interested in cartoons; by 17 he was producing strips for the
Beano and Dandy. He was also a chorister at Manchester Cathedral and a
superb fast bowler, playing for Lancashire Colts.
After studying furniture design at Manchester School of Art, in 1938 he
trained as an engineer at Rolls-Royce, working on Kestrel and Merlin
engines. With the outbreak of war, Hargreaves volunteered for the RAF, and
served in India, Ceylon and Persia in Signals. After demob, he joined
Gaumont British Animation in 1946, working on cartoons until the unit
disbanded three years later.
>From that point, Hargreaves worked as a freelance, developing characters for
children's comics and working on advertisements. While engaged by Toonder
Film Studios in Amsterdam in 1953, Hargreaves drew a strip called Little
Pandas, which was syndicated in 150 newspapers across Europe, and which he
produced for eight years.
By 1957, Hargreaves had begun contributing to Punch, for which he created
"the bird" the following year; the characters from it were to appear in a
series of books throughout the 1960s. He soon became one of the few
illustrators paid a retainer by the magazine, in which his work appeared
each week for 17 years. He also turned out for its cricket team.
His other work during the 1960s included Brush Your Teeth with Wine,
illustrations for textbooks, the TV character Go-Go the fox, which had a
soundtrack drawn from current pop hits, and the design of promotional toys
for Kellogg's cereals - of which more than 150 million sets were produced.
In 1967, he began a strip cartoon for the London Evening News; Hayseeds
became the paper's most popular feature, and was widely syndicated.
Hargreaves also produced a popular book of cricket cartoons, How's That!; it
was quickly followed up by Not Out! He continued until his final illness to
work for a wide range of publishers, advertisers and charities, one of
which, the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust, made him an honorary fellow.
In 1989, Hargreaves suffered an aneurism; his health never fully recovered,
and he was diagnosed with cancer earlier this year. He bore his last illness
with remarkable fortitude and humour.
Hargreaves married, in 1948, Wendy Vickery (always known as Penny). She
survives him with their two daughters.
|[W-OBITS] HARGREAVES: Harry Hargreaves by "Peter McCrae" <>|