It’s fantastic news that Waterside Arts Centre is the new home of the Cosgrove Hall Films Archive, dedicated to preserving and celebrating the history and legacy of the legendary studios that produced some of the most loved characters in children’s animation.
It’s a story rooted in Manchester where Brian Cosgrove (studying graphic design) and Mark Hall (studying illustration) met while studying at the Manchester Regional College of Art and Design (now MMU). Over four decades, mostly from a studio in Chorlton, a cavalcade of artists, producers, writers and actors created Noddy, Postman Pat, Jamie and the Magic Torch, Dangermouse, Count Duckula, Chorlton and the Wheelies, The BFG, Wind In The Willows and countless more animated favourites.
This new exhibition, which celebrates the preservation of the archive, will enable little and big kids to ogle at original puppets, props and story boards on public display together for the very first time, while enjoying the stories about the people who created them.
It gives an incredible insight into the creative process of both hand-drawn and stop-motion animation through scripts, storyboards, design, puppet-making, direction and post-production mastery.
We love that it reveals the true talent and skill behind something so seemingly effortless on screen. We also love that it gives parents of the land a chance to revisit some classics and enjoy them afresh with small people who have never even heard the Dangermouse theme tune before.