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British TV series
Grandma Bricks of Swallow Street

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Grandma Bricks
  of Swallow Street

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producers: Cosgrove Hall Productions
     animation: stop-motion
       episodes: Interstitial films
featured in
                       Thames TV's "Rainbow" series


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     These brief stop-motion films were used to illustrate the short stories read by
     Geoffrey Hayes on the Thames TV series "Rainbow". The Swallow Street residents
     were a mixed bag of folk, old and young, and of different ethnic backgrounds.
     There was Willie and Susan, and Joey, and a dog called Fuzzby, Abel Jones
     the garage man, Mr Bep, Mr Grindle, little Clare Nap and Barney - oh - and
     others I've yet to identify. The most important character, however, was Grandma
     Bricks and these short films are frequently referred to under her name, sans the
     "Swallow Street" tag.

     Although these films were short they were beautifully designed and animated
     by the good folk at Cosgrove Hall. A conscious effort was made to depict
     the diversity of British street life and a harmonious community. Indeed,
     in The Swallow Street Party the whole street comes together for a flag-
     festooned bash, in the great Silver Jubilee tradition of '77.

       a Swallow Street party...    Fuzzby the Swallow Street dog   

     "Grandma Bricks" was one of three stop-motion series produced by Cosgrove
     Hall for "Rainbow", the others being "Sally and Jake", and "Robin and Rosie of
     Cockleshell Bay"
. They also produced the show's 2D title sequence and a
     selection of picture interstitials known as "Lines and Shapes".

     These three stop-motion series served as an interesting steppingstone
     for Cosgrove Hall. They bridged the gap between the 3D caricatures of
     "Noddy" and "Chorlton and the Wheelies" and the naturalistic successes
     of their later films and specials (see The Rainbow Connection)....

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    Swallow Street episodes

      Grandma's Lost Glasses
     Painting the Grocer's Shop
     Grandma and the Cakes for Tea
     The Shops of Swallow Street
     Sunday in the Park
     Grandma, Mechanics and the Box
     Susan's New Dress
     Grandma's Broken Shopping Bag
     All Fall Down, Children
     The Large Box
     Grandma and the Hats
     Careless Children
     Swallow Street Hopping Race
     The Children's Tortoise
     Barney Buys the Bread
     Children's Bouncing Ball
     Grandma Hangs a Picture
     Everybody's Bumping
     Swallow Street Stops for Tea
     Swallow Street Under Snow
     The Family Picnic
     Clair Naps Birthday Party
     The Street Party
     Cleaning Up Grandma's Shop
     Willie's Ill
     Fusby's New Bone
     Fusby's Noise
     The Children Help Grandma
     The Book Race
     Grandma Forgets the Bread
     Willie and the Biscuit Tin
     Grandma and the Spanner
     The Children Tidy the Living Room
     Baker and the Rolling-Pin
     Grandma and the Clothes Line
     Three Wheels on my Pram
     Grandma and the Hedgehog
     Fusby Goes to the Park
     Closing Mr Crispin's Shop
     Susan's Fifth Birthday
     Baker and the Missing Buns

     Mr Brindle and the Sack
     Barney Drops the Oranges
     Grandma and the Table

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     Mr Grindle clowns around  

    Swallow Street merchandise

    Two Swallow Street tales feature in "Stories From Rainbow", a storybook
    published by William Collins in 1979. Grandma Bricks of Swallow Street
    and A Swallow Street Party are illustrated with colour photos from the
    production. It's interesting to note that many of the other stories in this
    volume - all taken from the "Rainbow" series - are written and illustrated
    by Bridget Appleby, who became something of a Cosgrove Hall stalwart.
    She stayed with the company for two more decades, before leaving
    in 2006, and during her tenure she originated both Oakie Doke and
    Engie Benjie...

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     films created and animated
      by Cosgrove Hall

stories read by Geoffrey Hayes
     written by John Kershaw

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      On the web

       This splendid Rainbow site covers all aspects of the series in detail.
       Best of all is the 'history' section which features comments from series
       devisor and producer Pamela Lonsdale who mentions her first contact
       with Cosgrove Hall, back in the first days of the show...


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© Cosgrove Hall Productions / F2007