Barry Jackson, Michael Mellor, Barnard Reyner

Broomstick Cottage was home to bumbling Mr Bobbin and his magic cat called Sponge. Cheeky Sponge was a mischievous moggy, always twirling his tail and causing mayhem when it was least expected, behind Mr Bobbin's back. Unfortunately, most of his magical japes were directed at Mr Bobbin's luckless friends Harry and Garry Dabble. When they helped Mr Bobbin move his furniture, Sponge made it disappear and reappear all over the place. When they helped Mr Bobbin grow his prize marrow, Sponge made their van fly around with them inside...

These near-forgotten shorts are a treat. Sponge "blobs" in and out of thin air like Fenella in Chorlton and the Wheelies. There's some fine comic timing, with the Dabbles frequently left speechless by Sponge's magic, just moving their heads agog, in unison. Keith Railton provided smart 'brummie' accents for the Dabbles too.

With only three production credits on show it appears that Jackson, Mellor, and Reyner performed all duties on this tight little series - a notion that's now been confirmed by Keith Railton himself




Broomstick Cottage - "The Monstrous Marrow"



Broomstick Cottage - "The Blockage"



Broomstick Cottage - "In The Loft"



Broomstick Cottage - "The Car"

"You're quite right about Broomstick cottage.
There were only three people involved in the
production - it was their hobby! Barry Jackson
was the writer and wrote and performed the
music. He also designed and created the
characters and the sets. Mike Mellor was the
engineer who articulated the models and made
them come to life. Barney Reyner was the
expert with the camera, and he lit and filmed
all the episodes.

My claim to fame was that I did the all the
voiceovers on all thirteen episodes. We
recorded the soundtrack in the space of
two days. Six of the episodes had already
been filmed and the other seven were in
script form. What a great time I had making
those wonderful creations come to life...

As far as I know they were never shown on
TV in the UK, but they were shown abroad.
They were however sold on video often as
part of cartoon compilations..."

Ah-ha! - So the team were only 'dabbling' in animation. Now we know where the names come from. Interesting to hear that these weren't actually broadcast in the UK. They were and are still great fun. A series for Trivia Hounds to track down and enjoy, methinks... (via)




Broomstick Cottage - "Daily Help"



Broomstick Cottage - The Lawnmower