Thursday, 25 December 2014

Raymond Sheppard and the Girl Annuals #4-6

Raymond Sheppard illustrations appear in every Girl Annual until the year of his early death, 1958. Hulton Press annuals #1-3 have been featured here already. These are not to be confused with the earlier and rarer Hulton's Girls' Annual published by Allied Newspapers

GIRL ANNUAL #4 [1956]
"Susan's ride" by Anna McMullen

[No caption], p.76
Girl on horse riding through stormy forest
Susan kicked out the stirrups and luckily fell clear, p.77
Four riders – girl in foreground falls off

It was a dreadful feeling when Molly's legs
no longer touched the ground and her neck stretched out
as she tried to swim through the flood, p.79
Girl on horse encourages horse through flood

Intriguingly I can't find anything about or by Anna McMullen, the author. One item found is not in evidence anywhere else in any of the major catalogues and her name doesn't appear in any other Girl Annuals I own.

GIRL ANNUAL #5 [1957]
"Women in the horse world" by Veronica Heath
[No caption] 
Horse troop perform at circus, p.145

A job as a groom will probably mean getting up at 6.30
and cleaning the pony and his stable, before breakfast!, p.146
Girl sweeps out tiled floor

Many shows hold classes only open to women riders – for example the 'ladies' jumping', p.147
Girl on horse jumps fence
Veronica Heath (1927-2012) appears to have been the author of many books on country living and horses and latterly on 'beating' - as in gundogs! Here's a short list of her books and her obituary which tells us that she was the Guardian’s country diarist for Northumberland for 35 years. 

A dog at heel : beating, picking-up, retrieving Woodbridge, Suffolk: Boydell Press, 1987.
A gundog handler's guide to picking up Shrewsbury : Swan Hill, 1999.
A Taste of Northumberland : traditional country cooking with Veronica Heath. Powdene Publicity, 2003.
Beginner's guide to riding. London, Pelham [1971]
Come pony trekking with me. London, F. Muller [1964]
Come riding with me London, F. Muller, 1955.
Come show-jumping with me London, 1961.
Let's own a pony Melksham : Colin Venton, [1974]
Perfect cooking with game Twickenham : Hamlyn, 1983.
Ponies London : Cassell, 1969.
Ponies and pony management. Arco, 1966.
Ponies in the heather Lutterworth Press, 1959.
Riding for beginners Oxford : Oxford Illustrated Press, 1978.
So you want to be a show jumper Melksham : Colin Venton, 1974.
Susan's riding school (part of the Mary Dunn Career Novels series) Chatto & Windus, 1956.
The family dog: his care and management; London, Pelham, 1972.

The NOBS guide to beating and picking up
Quiller Publishing, 2009.

Your pony.
Cassell, 1954.

Many of her books can be bought from Jane Badger Books - where a biography appears

GIRL ANNUAL #6 [1958]
"Sharing a cottage with some of my bird friends" by Len Howard

[No caption] , p.141
Two blackbirds swirl around an earthen pot
It's interesting to note how Sheppard added his signature to the piece above, rather unusually written at an angle!

This is the notice that stands outside Bird Cottage, p. 142
Two sparrows and robin atop a sign

A favourite toy for the tits was pecking at a toy elephant, p.143
Two tits pull at the elephant's stuffing
The tits enjoy picking sea shells from a jam jar and throwing them across the room, p.143
Tit flies with shell above jam jar

Len Howard, who I assumed was a man, is in fact Gwendolen Howard (1894 - 5 January 1973) or Olive Howard - see the Wikipedia links for the story, from which this basic bibliography comes.

  • Various articles in Out of Doors and Countrygoer (prior to 1950, these were separate publications; Howard was published approximately from 1951–1957).
  • Birds as Individuals. London: Collins Press, 1952.
  • Various articles in The Countryman (approximately from 1953–1957), including "Two Nesting Seasons" 54:1 (Spring 1957).
  • Living with Birds. London: Collins Press, 1956

So finally, let me wish all my readers a very Happy Christmas and what better way than to show you a very proud robin redbreast!

Stalky used to make himself tall and thin to impress the other robins, p.144
Robin stands very tall

1 comment:

  1. Norman, I've had a very quick look through past posts at some of the art - simply stunning. I'll be returning to read what you've written in the not too distant future - and I'll be adding this blog to my sidebar's list right away. Top stuff!