back to article Clangers creator dies at 83

Oliver Postgate - the man behind Bagpuss and the Clangers - has died aged 83, the BBC reports. His partner, Naomi Linnell, said he passed away yesterday at a nursing home near his home in Broadstairs, Kent, at the end of a distinguished career which also brought Ivor the Engine and Noggin the Nog to generations of kids. …


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  1. Dick Emery

    Sad :(

    My childhood just got a kick in the Clangers.

  2. Andrew Moore

    There goes part of my childhood...

    I'll always remember the Clangers cameo on Doctor Who...

    I just hope Coolbai don't fuck Bagpuss up- I mean look what's happened to Bill and Ben and Postman Pat (not to mention Pinky and Perky).

  3. Anonymous Coward


    FX - Makes whistling sound, descending in pitch.

  4. Anonymous Coward

    Ivor before Noggin?

    Erm, fact checker: I think you'll find Noggin The Nog was before Ivor The Engine (and possibly Smallfilm's first success, I'm not sure). Early Noggin's were in fact B&W. I can remember watching ItE on first broadcast in the later 70's.

    Go to YouTube, there's loads of episodes on there. I found them and introduced my kids to them all, and now they love them almost as much as I still do... :-)

    RIP Oliver - and thank you x

  5. Dave Harris

    So sad

    I never realised that Ivor the Engine came before the others. It's such a same that children today don't have programs of such imagination and craft to watch (although my daughter loves her Trumpton dvd).

    Emily must be feeling very sad.

  6. Paul

    One poster on the BBC got it spot on

    "Oliver hasn't died. Bagpuss has gone to sleep - and when Bagpuss goes to sleep all of his friends go to sleep."

  7. Trevor Watt

    All his shows are still running

    You can see all his programs on Nicklodeon after seven at night, my kids love them as much as I did when I was there age nearly 40 years ago.

    Bagpuss, dear Bagpuss

    Old Fat Furry Catpuss

    Wake up and look at this thing that I bring

    Wake up, be bright, be golden and light

    Bagpuss, oh hear what I sing

  8. Secretgeek


    Farewell Mr Postgate,

    I could say that 'They don't make 'em like that anymore' but then again I wouldn't really want 'them' too.

    His creations are a very special part of my childhood and I for one would like to thank him for that.

  9. Vincent

    Oh dear

    "The BBC notes that in October this year company Coolbai acquired the right to many of his characters, and said it "planned to introduce Bagpuss to a new generation"."

    Don't think many folks will like the sound of that.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Introduce Bagpuss to a new generation?

    Probably fully equipped with an Apache gunship and a Ferrari, given what they've done to postman pat.


    A. Cynic

  11. supermeerkat

    Thanks for the wonderful memories Mister Postgate...

    you created some of the most memorable of my childhood entertainment.

  12. Wize

    Bagpuss - The Next Generation

    Bet if it does come back, it will be a cartoon.

    Hope they cremate him, so he can't spin in his grave over that.


    Dear Bagpuss,

    Old fat furry cat-puss,

    Wake up and look at this thing that I bring.

    Wake up, be bright,

    Be golden and light.

    Bagpuss, oh hear what I sing.

    Mines the pink and white stripy one.

  13. pctechxp

    Bagpuss was overrated

    Ivor and the Clangers were best.

    Though a little before my time I enjoyed the repeats when I was young.

    We've lost yet another legend.


  14. Anonymous Coward

    A bit sad about this

    Always loved Postgate's stuff....

    "And when Bagpuss was asleep..."

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Dead Vulture

    Not a lot of people know...

    that Mr Postgate also wrote an occasional column for that (once?) fine organ, the New Statesman.

    A lovely example from February this year:

    There's more (much more), and well worth a look, at

    A proper article might have had at least one of these links in it.

    Thank you Mr Postgate, we'll remember you.

  16. Simon Round


    "The BBC notes that in October this year company Coolbai acquired the right to many of his characters, and said it "planned to introduce Bagpuss to a new generation". "

    No doubt using high end computer graphics therefore loosing the wonderful charm of the original animation.

    I grew up with these characters and feel it is a sad day with the loss of one of their creators.

  17. Spbmssen

    Sad, sad day

    I always maintained a feint hope that one day CBBC or CBeebies would go to Oliver Postgate, cap in hand, and say "OK, you were right - most of what we're doing IS crap...what have you got?". Sadly the opportunity is gone, but we still have the videos and DVDs of the Smallfilms output to remind ourselves, and show our children, how to tell a story for television.

    Lazy Town can shove the Secret Show up the Fimble's collective arse.

    God bless Oliver Postgate, god bless Peter Firmin.

    In Mr Postgate's memory, lets now boycott the BBCs childrens' channels until they agree to stop purveying the merchandise-led, brainless bottom-gravy that teaches our kids nothing but how to be brash, loud, soulless and dumb.

  18. Anonymous John


    Weeooo_ooeeeoo_woooeeeooo, weeooo_ooeeeoo_woooeeeooo

  19. Nick Palmer


    "Bagpuss gave a big yawn, and settled down to sleep. And when Bagpuss goes to sleep, all his friends go to sleep too. The mice are ornaments on the Mouse Organ, Gabriel and Madeleine are just dolls. And Professor Yaffle is just a carved wooden book-end in the shape of a woodpecker. Even Bagpuss himself, once he is asleep, is just an old, saggy cloth cat - baggy and a bit loose at the seams. But Emily loved him."

  20. Lloyd


    The man was a genius I tell ya, his work will live on even though he's resting peacefully.

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Bagpuss X

    "The BBC notes that in October this year company Coolbai acquired the right to many of his characters, and said it "planned to introduce Bagpuss to a new generation"."

    So expect Bagpuss to be retitled Bagpuss X and storylines to include Bagpuss the saggy moggy battling across dimensions with the evil exo-Mice to find the Ultra Mega Hyper Key in order to save the Universe. Or maybe I've watched too much Toonatik.

    Nevertheless, this is a great loss to all of us who were children of this era.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I blame the mice

    "We can fix him, we can mend him" - Not this time, lads.

  23. Anonymous Coward


    SWMBO will be gutted - she's a major fan of Bagpuss. Personally, I found it a bit *too* odd at times and besides, were it not for Ivor The Engine I wouldn't have developed an interest in railways and, in particular, industrial steam locomotives. God, I must have been an impressionable youngster :-)

    All the same, it's very sad - another cornerstone of my childhood has passed on. Think there's only Brian Cant left now ...

    Like many others, I don't hold out much hope for the 'reimaginings' of Bagpuss given the almighty mess that was made of Postman Pat.

    Mine's the hi-vis one with M&LRTCL on the back.

  24. Stuart Elliott


    Sorry to hear such a sad loss, his creations kept me a happy boy.

    On a lighter (and hopefully not too sick note) - I almost hope, that, when they lower his coffin into the soil, you hear a "heeeeeave, heeeeeeeave, heeeeeeeeeave"..

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So farewell, Oliver,

    You were never much good at snogging the nog

    bits would drop off unexpectedly

    as well you didn't create Woody Woodpecker.

    And now. The Final.


    EJ Thribb (age)

    P.S. I've asked Santa for the DVD collection

  26. Stevie


    Nogin the Nog came *before* Ivor the Engine. I was watching the former sometime around 1959 and I was doing "O" levels when the latter came on.

    That said:

    How sad. I can only properly express my sorrow at the passing of this great man with the aid of a swanee whistle. He made life bearable for a few minutes each day.

    No doubt all the episodes of Clangers were lost when the video tape was re-used for Blankety-Blank, and we shall be denied the definitive DVD collection of his work.

  27. Flugal

    Oliver Postgate dies and Jaqui Smith lives... there no justice?

    Thank you, belatedly, Mr Postgate for the huge contribution you have made to British society.

  28. Red Bren

    Coolbai to remake Bagpuss?

    I for one welcome our new, stripy pink feline overlord!

    Is Tux the new Professor Yaffle?

  29. Tawakalna

    Nogbad the Bad

    no-one ever remembers Noggin the Nog. Way before Ivor the Engine. I remember watching the very first episode of Ivor, but I preferred The Herbs meself. Still do!

    oh, those Herbs....

  30. Ben

    @ Stevie

    "No doubt all the episodes of Clangers were lost when the video tape was re-used for Blankety-Blank, and we shall be denied the definitive DVD collection of his work."

    Not so - they're available on DVD from your local massively-overgrown online, tat emporium.

    The Clangers used to be my standard breakfast viewing before regattas, as Channel 4 would show them early on Saturday mornings. Happy memories...

  31. Ian Johnston Silver badge

    Psht-coof. Psht-coof. Psssssshhhht-cooooof.

    Both Ivor the Engine and Noggin the Nog appeared in 1959: Ivor was the first Smallfilms production. In the seventies, all but the first six of the original Ivors (which explained, inter alia, how he came to sing in the choir) were remade in colour, as were a few Noggins in 1979.

    So anyone watching - as I did - in the seventies would have seen nice new coloured Ivors and old black and white Noggins: hence, I think, the confusion about which came first.

    These quibbles aside, Oliver Postgate is a sad loss. There is a gentleness, a lyricism and an imagination to the Postgate and Firmin work which is completely lacking from the hyperactive, in-yer-face children's TV of today.

    I bought the DVD of the colour Ivors on Saturday, for a friend's 3-year-old son who is laid up with illness. He's enchanted.

  32. Andy Taylor

    A sad loss

    Oliver Postgate was a truely inspired and inspirational man and I am sad to hear that he has died.

    I remember watching Ivor, Bagpuss and the Clangers when growing up and now my children are fans as well. They watch (nearly) all the modern shows and enjoy them, and are equally happy to sit down and watch Ivor or the Clangers on DVD. This is a true measure of the genius of Postgate and Firmin.

  33. Anonymous Coward

    my eye are leaking

    'nuf said.

  34. Mr Larrington


    Au contraire. There was even a stage version[1] in the early 80's. This I know because one of Dr. Larrington's friends played the role of Graculus. Can anyone remind me which Nog it was who, whenever confronted with something potentially hazardous, would say something along the lines of "I'll stay here and guard the horses"?

    However, anyone who bigs up anything other than The Clangers is a menk. I had to spend much of last night comforting my Authentic Whistling Major Clanger, who lives on top of my bedside light.


    1 - it was this: a rubbish

  35. Nigel Birch

    'nuf said?

    mine too

  36. Pum

    Many thanx Oliver Postgate

    ... for the wonderful shows you and Peter Firmin made. Noggin the Nog was a bit before my time, but I loved Ivor the Engine, Clangers and Bagpuss from the moment I saw them as a small child. Now, as a small adult I have them on DVD and still enjoy them.

    The world is a better place for you having been in it and done the things you did. This goes to show you don't have to conquer nations, wield great power, or harm people to make a difference and be remembered.

  37. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    the poetry of childhood

    The opening of Noggin the Nog is poetry in itself.....

    In the Lands of the North, where the black rocks stand guard against the cold sea, in the dark night that is very long, the men of the Northlands sit by their great log fires and they tell a tale...

    Can you imagine something as melancholic on kids tv today?

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