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Bengo the Boxer Pup
stories by (William Timym)
The adventures of a Boxer puppy with his friend Percy the Afghan hound. Narrated by Sylvia Peters.
A letter from Tim's Niece
Re: Bengo the Boxer Puppy
Let me introduce myself, I am the niece of William Timym (Tim) the cartoonist who presented 'Bengo' the Boxer Puppy in the '50's. I happened to be surfing the net when I came across your website.
With regard to the little comment about the paw/mouth movements being very rigid, this was because my uncle would have to operate these manually at the start and end of each performance. In those days anything animated and live on air had to be as simple as possible. I remember the large animated drawing cards with 'pull' and 'slide' instructions and would play with them when he returned home from the BBC studios.
These 'animated' cartoons would take all week between programmes to produce along with the story line. The drawings were done in vision (live) and the narrative read by Mary Malcolm or Sylvia Peters. (in the early days my uncle used to tell the stories in his charming Austrian accent but had been plagued by complaints that the marker pen he used to draw the characters would squeal and screech and drive viewers mad so the sound had to be eliminated while my uncle was actually drawing on screen).
Apart from drawing 'Bengo' followed by 'Bleep and Booster' in the late '50's early '60's my uncle had strip cartoons syndicated all over the world. In this country there was the character called 'Humphrey' who appeared in the magazine 'Woman'. 'Wuff, Tuff & Snuff', 'Sniff', 'The Boss' and 'Caesar' in the Sunday Graphic
'Tim' had a career change in his 70's and became better known by his full name - William Timym. He was in great demand for his lifelike portraits and sculptures of animals and had many commissions including the Gorillas and Rhinos of Sir John Aspinal at Howlett's and Port Lympne, Lord Londonderry's bulldogs, an over life-size sculpture of two fighting Jaguars for Kerry Packer in Australia and Zoos in America. He even designed the TVT award 'oscar' presented each year to deserving television personalities and produced drawings or characatures for various covers for both the Radio and TV Times. The list goes on.
He continued his very close association with 'Blue Peter' and its producer Biddy Baxter after his cartoon series 'Bleep & Booster' ended. He was then asked to sculpt Peter Purvis' dog 'Petra', this was shown on the programme through its various processes, as was the over life-size sculpture of 'Guy' the Gorilla commissioned by the London Zoo and filmed by Blue Peter as a special programme. The head of Petra is still to be found on a plinth in the Blue Peter garden at the Television Centre in Wood Lane, London.
He also had commissions for humans and his sculpture of Sir Malcolm Sergeant, commissioned by the Promenaders, stands on one of the sweeping staircases at the entrance to the Albert Hall; and a bust of Sir Francis Chichester is part of a display on the 'Gypsy Moth'. He was asked to sculpt a portrait of H.M. The Queen Mother but he felt that a medium such as bronze could not do justice to Her Majesty and therefore declined.
My uncle loved animals and because of the lifelike quality he managed to instill into his pieces was asked to give interviews on various TV networks, he was also invited to a lunch hosted by Princess Margaret and Prince Philip on a World Wildlife Fund function when he sat next to Her Royal Highness who showed great interest in the 'lost wax' process.
His collection of bronzes and drawings still stand as a lasting tribute to a very talented man who was presented with the MBE at the age of 87 by the Queen, in recognition of his work for the World Wildlife Fund, just two years before his death in 1990.
Oxford (nee Timym)
Bengo Book from the 1950's
Bleep and Booster also drawn by Tim in the '60s
Wade pottery made several Bengo figures in the '50s
If you have any comments or further information of interest, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org