Spooks, Spies & Videotape….
Hummingbird Communications : May 7, 2015 7:20 pm : Blog

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The Hummingbirds rubbed shoulders this week with lots of important people from the world of museums, education and the military, when we launched educational video project – Spooks, Spies and Videotape: London’s Secret War in the impressive Thames Pavilion at the House of Commons.

Our WWII Secret War veterans, Jean Argles, Patricia Davies, Joyce Aylard, and Fred Bailey, spent a busy day broadcasting live on BBC Radio London, being filmed for BBC Breakfast and inspiring everyone they spoke to.  It was a long way from their clandestine days in wartime London unable to talk about their roles because they’d signed the official secrets act. One journalist attending the launch was very amused when her charming interviewee was, even now, still reluctant to give her name…the helpful name badge gave her away!

Jean Argles, a code and cipher officer, who was sent to Cairo and Italy recalls the secrecy: “The code and cipher people were being trained to work this particular section of the army.  We had to go to Baker Street where the headquarters of the organisation, the underground movements in Europe were managed from and it was terribly top-secret.  Although we were in uniform, we had to get off the bus early and go on to the offices so nobody would know.  There was one morning when we were getting off and the bus conductor said, “Any more spies?” We wondered if we were quite as secret as we thought we were!”


Looks like bilbies are going to be in the news a lot over the next few days…
Hummingbird Communications : April 18, 2014 10:11 am : Blog

But you may be asking, what is a bilby? Let us introduce you to Britain’s only Bilby!


This cute big-eared bandicoot is threatened with extinction and is so precious to Australians that they have yet to allow any UK zoos to take one. Yet, it can now be revealed that three adventurous bilbies appear to have burrowed up in Britain. Exchanging ‘Down Under’ for the South Downs, they’ve been discovered in Lewes, East Sussex. Here the family of bilbies are being nurtured and will soon be seen across the UK by millions – when they star in their own new TV show for children as these bilbies are animated.

This new cartoon series follows the adventures of Boj. Boj is a bilby – a rare marsupial from the Australian Outback. He has burrowed to Giggly Park with his musical parents Mimi and Pops (voiced by Jason Donovan) where they now live in their simple, quirky underground burrow at the heart of their new neighbourhood. This cosmopolitan community has never seen anything quite like Boj’s family with their joyful back-to-basics lifestyle.

Boj is full of creativity and spontaneous fun and since popping up as the new kid in Giggly Park he’s made lots of new buddies. Everyone loves Boj’s upside-downy, topsy-turvy ways. With his improvised ‘Boj-a-Boom’ ideas Boj can solve everybody’s problems, and when Boj gets ‘Boj-ing’ he builds friendships and bonds the whole community together like never before.

Created by Lewes residents Claire Underwood, David Hodgson and Dave Ingham, and produced by BAFTA-winning animation company Pesky, Boj will be airing on CBeebies from next month.

Stars such as Jason Donovan and Dave Benson Phillips have been visiting Pesky’s purpose-built recording studio in Lewes regularly over the past year to bring their characters to life. Adding to the fun are an array of local voice artists, designers, musicians and young actors talent-spotted from nearby schools.

For Pesky, it’s not just a funny cartoon. Claire and the two Daves are passionate about the positive messages contained in the show, particularly about caring for your community and the environment. They are hoping that Boj will help raise awareness of those real-life bilbies threatened with extinction.

Five fab facts about bilbies:

* They are marsupials, so just like kangaroos they have pouches. The pouch opens backwards so it does not fill with dirt when burrowing.
* There are less than 600 left in the wild
* They are also known as ‘rabbit-eared bandicoots’
* They like to eat all kinds of things including seeds, spiders, worms, insects, bulbs, fruit, fungi and small lizards
* Just like koalas, bilbies don’t need to drink water because they get all their moisture from their food, although they will drink water if it’s available.

So, that’s what a bilby is.


Boj coming soon to CBeebies!
Hummingbird Communications : April 16, 2014 1:54 pm : Blog

G’day to new Hummingbird clients Lewes-based animation house Pesky. We’re really excited to be working on the social media for Pesky’s exciting new animation series Boj when it launches on CBeebies next month. The series, about a rare Australian marsupial called a Bilby, features the dulcet Antipodean tones of Jason Donovan as Pops.

Blog: Davy McGuire promotes Big Imaginations on Blue Peter
Hummingbird Comms : October 19, 2013 1:34 pm : Blog

Much excitement at Hummingbird HQ last Thursday when paper artist Davy McGuire took his amazing Ice Book onto children’s tv show Blue Peter to promote the Big Imaginations Children’s Theatre Festival. Described as the world’s first projection mapped pop up book, the Ice Book is an exquisite miniature theatre experience made by husband and wife team Davy and Kristin McGuire.   By day the book is less than one foot tall and features a series of beautifully cut pop-up pages but when the lights go out and a projection is beamed onto the paper stage, the book comes alive as a story unfolds about a man on a journey through the wilderness. In between sitting in the CBBC links studio and ensuring he got a Blue Peter badge, Davy managed to shrink guest Blue Peter presenter Steve Backshall down to miniature to appear inside the Ice Book forest and show viewers exactly how the Ice Book worked!  See Davy’s appearance here… 

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