Enid Blyton and the BBC | Revealing the writer's troubled relationship with the BBC
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[Printed notepaper headers read:]
July 12. 40.
The Children's Hour Director, B.B.C. London.
I send three of my most popular children's books, stories from which have been
broadcast with great success in Australia and America.
Their success as regards broadcasting apparently lies in the following
1. The books are written to appeal to all ages of children, and not for one
definite age, which means that every child listener understands and enjoys.
2. There is prolific dialogue, which brings the characters to life quickly.
3. The books are divided into incidents and episodes of the right length for
broadcasting, and contain much action.
I should be glad to know if they are suitable for broadcasting in this country
(they are, of course, written for
English children, and published only in England, where they are best-sellers)
and if so I should be pleased to arrange a series of episodes from any book for
you, or to discuss with you the best means of presenting the stories.
I have, of course, dozens of
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other children's books of all kinds, which you might consider even more suitable.
I have written them all with a view to including every age of child, hence the
I send a few leaflets in case you do not know my work, and also enclose two or
three of the weekly Children's Magazine I write and edit every week. It has a
circulation of 60,000, and is now the only Children's Magazine on the market,
being very well-known also in the colonies.
Any further information regarding my work can be found in "Who's Who".
I also specialize [sic] in Children's Plays which are acted in English-speaking
schools all over the world.
Stamps enclosed for return of any book not held.
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Document Type | Audience Reaction Report
12 July 1940
Having failed to gain exposure for her stories two years before, Enid Blyton here approaches the director of the 'Children's Hour' slot on BBC radio. She outlines the merits of her publications and her experience as a writer for a younger audience.
A BBC report issued in 1949 instructed that 'Children's Hour' should aim to 'entertain the children in a stimulating way, guiding their reading, encouraging their various interests and inculcating the love of God and their neighbour'.
The children's author pitches ideas for a radio broadcast.
Hugh Pollock drops a line to Sir John Reith on behalf of his wife.
The BBC Director General offers to help Enid Blyton.
The children's author tells the BBC Director General her 'story so far'.
The work of Enid Blyton receives a critical review.
The children's author tries again to work for the BBC.
It's thumbs down for 'The Monkey and the Barrel-Organ'.
A presenter of BBC religious programme learns of Blyton's thoughts on 'Christian training'.
A BBC broadcaster asks the children's author for ideas.
The writer reveals the difficulties of adapting the Bible for children.
The 'children's heroine' chooses not to talk to adults.
A BBC producer tries to arrange an interview with celebrated children's author.
Enid writes to a BBC producer with surprising news.
BBC producer Lionel Gamlin doesn't confirm or deny a Blyton ban.
Blyton lets Lionel Gamlin know that she didn't jump but was pushed.
Head of BBC 'Children's Hour' confirms the existence of Blyton ban.
The author outlines her busy life to BBC producer.
The 'Woman's Hour' editor asks a Schools expert about Enid Blyton.
Jean Sutcliffe explains the policy regarding Enid Blyton.
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