Sunday, 1 May 2011

Picture Book: 1955

Patricia Driscoll

Often described as the inspiration for Jackanory, Picture Book was a BBC TV series that first appeared in 1955. It was the Monday programme in the Watch with Mother cycle and was created by Freda Lingstrom. It was initially introduced by Patricia Driscoll. The programme encouraged children to make things. Patricia Driscoll left in 1957 to play the part of Maid Marian with Richard Greene in the ITV series, The Adventures of Robin Hood. She was later replaced by Vera McKechnie.

Each Monday, either Driscoll or McKechnie would fetch out the Picture Book and open it at a relevant page. Sometimes this would be shown to the camera at a distance, making the pages'content often brief and obscure. Alternatively, the presenter would simply tell the children what the next item would be, sometimes with a still photograph as a continuity link. It was something different every week. The 1963 series featured throughout a puppet dachshund called Sausage, that could speak a few words and generally shared the presentation with Vera McKechnie.

Vera McKechnie

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