Old Bears Everywhere

Rupert Bear

In 1920 the Daily Express began printing a daily cartoon strip, hoping to rival that of their competitor the Daily Mail. Artist Mary Tourtel was responsible for creating something special and unique that would win readers over. Her choice was to tell the tale of a Human-like-Bear who along with his contempories dressed in Human clothing, whilst having adventures in the magical realm of Nutwood, based around an English village. The character she created was none other than the yellow checked, trouser wearing Rupert Bear, and he forever won the nations heart. His family and friends also featured, making the whole experience memorable. There was Bill Badger, Edward Elephant, Algy Pug, Podgy Pig, Tiger Lily and Ping Pong, plus others.When Mary retired in 1935, Alfred Bestall took her place and expanded on plots and story lines that inspired the nation. Even during WWII, during the paper shortage, Rupert continued amusing the masses, as it was believed his absence would create a demise in morale.Following the end of WWII, Rupert found his way into comics, books and annuals insuring his popularity never waned. Although originally depicted as a brown bear, the annuals of 1973 changed him into what we recognise today. He even went global with translations enchanting all the Worlds Children. Finally in 1960 Rupert was given form as a soft cuddly toy thanks to the English companies Merrythought and Pedigree Toys. America soon followed with Real Soft Toys taking up the challenge. In 2010 Steiff finally got the license to produce Rupert, and crafted him from Alpaca in a choice of Brown (L/E 1,973) or White (L/E 3,000).

Click here for the Rupert range.