Charity celebrates 40 years with mascot Paddington BearTM

The Horsham-based charity, Action Medical Research will be celebrating 40 years with its official mascot Paddington BearTM on the 25 June and they are seeking members of what used to be known as Paddington’s Make It Grow club.

Paddington has been at the heart of fundraising for the UK-wide children’s charity ever since his creator, Michael Bond, met Action’s founder Duncan Guthrie back in 1976 and his friendly face has helped to attract thousands of new supporters who together have raised millions of pounds to help babies and children.

Paddington with Michael Bond and a young Bonnie Langford
Paddington with Michael Bond and a young Bonnie Langford

Shortly after becoming Action Medical Research’s official mascot, Paddington became the figurehead of Paddington’s Make it Grow Club. And now the charity wants to hear from anyone who was part of the society, which later became the Paddington Action Club.

“We’re so proud to have been Paddington’s favourite UK charity for four decades now so we want people to share any memories of growing up with Paddington and Action,” says Sarah Moss, Action Medical Research’s Director of Communications.

“We’d love to hear from supporters who were part of the Paddington’s Make It Grow Club back in the 1970s and 1980s, or those who were involved with the Paddington Action Club later on.”

Paddington Bear celebrates his birthday with some of the children who attend Headstart Nursery in Horsham (Photo by Skye Brackpool/Vervate www.vervate.com)
Paddington Bear celebrates his birthday with some of the children who attend Headstart Nursery in Horsham (Photo by Skye Brackpool/Vervate www.vervate.com)

For any readers who were a member of the Make It Grow Club, or the Paddington Action Club, please email Paddington@action.org.uk with your memories of growing up with Paddington or call 01403 327480 – the charity would be grateful to see copies of any old photographs of Paddington as its mascot.

To celebrate the ruby anniversary, Action Medical Research will also be inviting people to share their memories of its faithful mascot on Twitter and Facebook on 25 June, Paddington’s summer birthday.

For more than 60 years Action Medical Research has helped pioneer treatments and ways to prevent disease that have benefited millions of people in the UK and across the world. Research they’ve funded has helped to beat polio in the UK, develop ultrasound in pregnancy, fight meningitis and prevent stillbirths.

Action Medical Research is currently funding research into meningitis, Down syndrome, epilepsy and premature birth, as well as some rare and distressing conditions that severely affect children.

Jacob (2) and Harrison (18 months) enjoy a  marmalade sandwich with Paddington Bear (Photo by Skye Brackpool/Vervate www.vervate.com )
Jacob (2) and Harrison (18 months) enjoy a marmalade sandwich with Paddington Bear (Photo by Skye Brackpool/Vervate www.vervate.com )