Postman Pat’s original sets are on display after being saved from destruction


The original sets used to produce the children’s television classic Postman Pat have been saved from destruction and are on display for the first time.

Depicting the rolling tracks to Pat’s fictional house in the Lake District, Greendale, the 3D miniatures were in a storage facility but were in danger of being scrapped if a new home could not be found.

Hosts MacKinnon & Saunders, who directed the last series in the series, persuaded a movie archive to step in to help.

Models from the show – including Pat’s cottage, school, lighthouse and Pencaster Square – were on display at Sale’s Waterside Arts Center in Greater Manchester on Saturday.

Managing Director Peter Saunders said he was “relieved” that they were saved.

He said: “It has been 40 years since Postman Pat appeared on the BBC.

After production was completed the beautiful miniature sets and props were carefully packaged and moved to a storage facility in Stalybridge, but the iconic village of Greendale was notified this year – no longer needed for filming, all models had to be destroyed unless a new home could be found for them.

“When MacKinnon & Saunders realized the perilous situation, I contacted the Cosgrove Hall Films Archive in Waterside to ask if their animation archives could come to Greendale’s rescue.

“The teams at Waterside and Trafford Council immediately offered to help and, through their hard work and dedication, many of the designs featured in this unique piece of British popular culture have been preserved for the enjoyment of future generations. “

The BBC first commissioned Postman Pat in 1979.

The stop-motion series, starring the beloved postman and his black and white cat, was written by John Cunliffe and voiced by Ken Barrie.

The sets were on display at Sale’s Waterside Arts Center in Greater Manchester on Saturday.

The first 13 episodes aired on the BBC in 1981. They were hosted by prolific animation director Ivor Wood and originally produced by Woodland Animation.

In 2003, Entertainment Rights and Cosgrove Hall Films teamed up to develop Postman Pat: Special Delivery.

This stop motion series, based on the original Ivor Wood series, reused parts of its sets but also expanded Pat’s world to include the town of Pencaster.

After five years of production, the program was broadcast on the BBC in 2008.

Classic Media, Dreamworks, and Mackinnon & Saunders resumed production between 2013 and 2017, when the last new episode aired.

The sets feature tiny props that were used by the characters in the series
The sets feature tiny props that were used by the characters in the series

Richard Evans, Creative Industries Trafford Coordinator, said: “We were delighted when we were contacted by Peter at MacKinnon & Saunders asking if we could possibly accommodate these awesome sets from Postman Pat.

“Peter and several members of his team had been working on the series when it was redeveloped by Cosgrove Hall Films.

“Since we already had puppets from the series in the archives and the sets had to be destroyed as they could no longer be stored in Take 1 studios in Stalybridge, we just jumped at the chance to be the new keepers.

After a meeting with rights holders for Postman Pat, Dreamworks and NBC Universal, where we explained our approach to the archives to celebrate the legacy of Cosgrove Hall, the two companies were also happy to donate the sets and props to our archives.

“Knowing how much this television series was and still is loved, and how beautifully preserved many of these sets have been, we created this exhibit especially to share these rarely seen sets, puppets and props with fans of the series, young and old. “

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