Children in Need

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Photos from Marie Phillips, no reproduction without permission. Marie Phillips was the Midlands Children in Need organiser at this time.

Here are a couple of photos of the Children in Need fund raising trailer, at Pebble Mill on Children in Need night. The vehicle would tend to be parked at the front of the building, attracting as many visitors as possible, for the regional broadcasts.

The lower photo is from 1990, and includes: Melissa from the Press Office, Pauline Logan from the Press Office who sadly died at a young age a few years ago, Marie Phillips,  Jeanette Read who was Barry Smith’s Secretary and when she retired, worked for Marie for a couple of days a week. It used to be so manic at Appeal Time that Marie and Jeanette became known as Stan and Ollie which they still call each other to this day.

The following comments were left on the Pebble Mill Facebook group:

Marie Phillips: ‘Appeal Nights were such fun and a wonderful opportunity to meet fundraisers as well as funded groups. CIN was my life for nine happy and fulfilling years. My “real” job was administering the Midlands and East donations once grants had been allocated by our dedicated Appeals Committee and making sure that the money raised by the public was used effectively and properly. I had amazing support from so many people at Pebble Mill who never turned down my frequent begging requests for help with events and merchandise sales (£100,000+) and visits to funded projects. Yes, Jean, Great times and the best times.’

Siobhan Maher Kennedy: ‘I got a big break from CIN night ..I think 1986 or 87 I was allowed to present some of the BBC Midlands sections as i was a researcher on a 6 month contract for Mike Fitz and we went live on national tv for one and I got a job at CBBC in London to be a presenter in children’s pres.Oh but that’s a very long run on sentence…I never do that on Telly lol!’

Ruth Kiosses: ‘Loved CIN parties on the front of PM. Busiest week of the year for wardrobe, costume vans galore arriving from Wales Farm Road In London. Always great fun though.’

Jean Palmer: ‘Loved CIN at Pebble Mill raised lots of money in the club Sue Lowe, Angie and myself doing a turn on the stage. the best one was our take on the three degrees. great night. great times.’

Peter Poole: ‘Pebble Mill always put on a great show. I remember the funfair on the front lawn. This attracted a large crowd. Plenty of money for CIN and great PR for the BBC. Many viewers told me the Pebble Mill opt-out was the best bit. The BBC needs good PR these days. Such a shame that Birmingham no longer does a CIN opt-out like the old days.’

Mary Sanchez: ‘I worked on many CIN s at PM – what epics! Front /back lawns – fire engines / helicopters landing on field by bar ….sooooo busy, brilliant – must dig out some photos – I have one somewhere of all floor staff in space outfits …(?!)’

Patrick Flavelle: ‘My first gig at Pebble Mill – supporting David Nelson, a cracking producer. Met some celebs and tasted live telly for the first time….happy days!’

Children in Need exhibition stand

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Photos by Marie Phillips, no reproduction without permission.

These photos are of an exhibition stand raising funds for Children in Need.

Prospero – Demolition of Pebble Mill

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Copyright resides with the original holder, no reproduction without permission.

Thanks to Peter Poole for finding, and sharing this article about memories of Pebble Mill, from the BBC retirees’ publication – Prospero. The article was written by Lincoln Sam Shaw, and published in June 2006.

The following comments were left on the Pebble Mill Facebook group:

Marie Phillips: ‘I think I am right that Lincoln Sam Shaw was Simon Shaw’s father. I remember my Personnel Boss, Andy Tylee, speaking of him and what a great character he was.’

Cathy Houghton: ‘Sam Shaw was News Editor on Midlands Today and a good boss. He and his wife still feature in the opening titles of Antiques Road Show – it’s their wedding picture you see. There will be lots of people who remember Sam.’

Jane Savage: ‘A lovely article. I joined the BBC at Pebble Mill on the Secretarial Reserve – the week after Princess Anne’s official opening – and one of my first assignments was in the newsroom. I remember Sam making time during the power crisis to reassure an elderly lady who had telephoned in anxious to find out when her electricity might return. The first person she spoke to was trying to get rid of her but Sam took over and he was just brilliant – the human face in a frantic environment.’

Children in Need – St Basil’s

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Photos by Marie Phillips, no reproduction without permission.

The photos show television presenter, Ross King, presenting the Birmingham charity – St Basil’s, with a cheque for £50,000 from Children in Need. It dates from October 1992. St Basil’s is a charity for young people at risk of being homeless in the West Midlands.Ross King worked on Hot Chefs , and the entertainment show, Pebble Mill, as well as linking The Morning on One.

Marie Phillips added the following information:

‘it was a grant from Children in Need to St. Basils, but for something different to their homeless projects. This was for a womens’ refuge with mostly single mothers. I remember we visited to hand over the cheque which I think was a three year grant to fund support workers.We could not identify the location for security of the residents. I was struck by the number of cctv cameras around the building (not so common in those days) and asked why they were there. Apparently abusive husbands and boyfriends would try to get to their wives and partners and the cameras were for prevention and protection. Ross King was brilliant with everyone and showed real interest and concern and said afterwards how genuinely delighted he had been to be able to bring a little light into their lives. He was another Pebble Mill Presenter always willing to help CIN and me. Happy days!’

Edward’s Trust – Gardeners’ World, Children in Need












Copyright resides with the original holder, no reproduction without permission.

This article is about a Children in Need and Gardeners’ World story from around 1990. The gardening series created a garden for a Birmingham charity – The charity was set up by the parents of a little boy called Edward, who died aged 7. The aim of the charity was to provide places for families to stay when their children were far away from home in hospital. The charity managed to refurbish some flats near the Childrens’ Hospital, and Gardeners World, then headed up by Stephanie Silk, created the garden as a place for the families to sit and relax. Children in Need gave the charity funds to help with the refurbishment.

When the Childrens’ Hospital was re-built the flats were demolished, and Edward’s Trust refurbished some old nurses quarters in Moseley. These closed in 2008, but the charity continues, and offers counselling and bereavement services to families.

Thanks to Children in Need co-ordinator Marie Phillips for making the cutting available.

The following comment was left on the Pebble Mill Facebook group:

Marie Phillips: ‘It was my first few months with Children in Need and the grant given to the Dent’s project was one which stood out. I thought it would make a really nice feature for Gardeners’ World and at the same time, provide awareness of the Edward’s House Charity, but hadn’t a clue how to go about it. At the time I was based in the Press Office and asked Chris Bates his opinion. He thought it was a great idea and spoke to Stephanie who to my delight agreed. I remember the garden had raised flower beds and looked marvellous when it was finished. The programme brought a huge response and Edward’s Trust benefitted all round. I think that sadly, some years later, the project had to close.’