A new generation of fans are falling in love with saggy old cloth cat Bagpuss, who is the star of a new exhibition at the Museum of Canterbury.
Co-creator Peter Firmin was at the show opening, chatting to fans whose own parents are barely as old as Bagpuss.
Thirty-five years after he was created by Mr Firmin and Oliver Postgate, who died in December, in a barn in Blean, Bagpuss continues to delight and to charm.
The exhibition, Bagpuss and Friends, opened with a We Love Bagpuss day.
Some of Firmin and Postgate’s other creations, Ivor the Engine, Noggin the Nog, and The Clangers, who were all brought to animated life during the 1960s and 1970s, are also on show.
Only 13 episodes on Bagpuss were ever made, each one opening with the pink and white cloth cat yawning itself awake in a shop to some magic words spoken by Emily, one of Mr Firmin’s six daughters.
It is Emily, according to her father, who has the best explanation for Bagpuss’s enduring appeal.
“Emily’s theory is that either she was in charge of the shop, or Bagpuss was in charge of the shop, but no adults ever were,” says Mr Firmin, 80.
“So that’s why everyone loves it – it’s a place where children can do their own thing, with their own toys, and where there are no adults to interfere.”
Charlotte Firmin, another artist daughter of the Firmin clan, also attended on opening day. The Faversham-based illustrator led art workshops for children and helped them come up with their own creations. And she offered her own suggestion as to why everyone loves Bagpuss.
“Isn’t it the law?” she said.
The Bagpuss and Friends exhibition runs at the Museum of Canterbury in Stour Street until February 28.
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