Please Look After This Bear

Who doesn’t love Paddington Bear?

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Assuming the answer is nobody, here’s a free London treat for everyone this December.  50 bears have converged on London and the display is perfect for keeping the kids happy when on a London Christmas shopping spree. And it’s just as popular with the big kids too!

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“Parka Paddington” by Liam Gallagher – Carnaby Street

Paddington is the down-to-earth, wise and cute brainchild of Michael Bond.  The then BBC tv cameraman told how the character came about:

“I bought a small toy bear on Christmas Eve 1956. I saw it left on a shelf in a London store and felt sorry for it. I took it home as a present for my wife Brenda and named it Paddington as we were living near Paddington Station at the time. I wrote some stories about the bear, more for fun than with the idea of having them published. After ten days I found that I had a book on my hands. It wasn’t written specifically for children, but I think I put into it the kind things I liked reading about when I was young.”

He soon found a willing publisher, William Collins & Sons (now Harper Collins), who commissioned an illustrator, Peggy Fortnum, and the very first book “A Bear Called Paddington” was published on 13th October 1958.

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“Paddington the Explorer” – Piccadilly Circus

This first appearance of the Peruvian adventurer was such a success that Bond went on to write a whole series. The books have been translated into over forty languages and have sold more than thirty-five million copies so far.  In 1997, Bond was awarded an OBE for services to children’s literature. He is still writing and lives in London, not far from Paddington Station where it all began.  This year, he will have the pleasure of seeing his famous character on the big screen – Paddington the Movie opened in UK cinemas on Nov 28.

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“Bearodiversity” – Glasshouse Street

In conjunction with this, and in the spirit of various public art “parades” that have gone before, visitlondon.com, the NSPCC and STUDIOCANAL are bringing a host of Paddingtons to the London streets.  Many have been designed by artists and celebrities.

Fifty Bears, One City runs until 30 December.  Go to visitlondon.com for maps and details of the 50 statues.

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“Bear Humbug” by Ant and Dec – Oxford Street
Part of Thursday Special and Blue Monday.

16 thoughts on “Please Look After This Bear

  1. Hi Debbie,

    I love when cities do this! It all began in Zurich in 1986. I first found out about it with Cows in Chicago in l999. Thanks for playing today.
    Happy Blue Monday!

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    1. Ah yes, I Iiked the cows. I saw them in Lisbon. It really brightens up the city and it’s a great way of including younger members of the family in sightseeing.

      Sent from my iPhone

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  2. I love the one from Carnaby Street most. What a terrific town you live in Debbie- so much art going on around you 🙂 Thank you for this fun entry. I love it and am happy about it 🙂

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  3. I’m longing to go and see some of the bears in London. Have you seen the film yet? It is wonderful! Very funny and I couldn’t believe how wrapped up in the storyline I became. Definitely an all time favourite. You could tell how much everyone in the audience loved it. At the end we all started chatting to each other (even complete strangers) about how wonderful it was.

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    1. It is amazing. Bond have Paddington such a strong character it worked amazingly well. Not yet. Have you? I’m hoping my daughter will want to go with me when she hrs back from uni this weekend.

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    1. Maybe you’ll get to see a few after they are auctioned. I’m sure some large companies such as hotels will be interested.

      On Thu, Dec 11, 2014 at 7:23 AM, Travel with Intent wrote:

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