Blue Peter

Blue Peter plays a significant part in British culture, as it began in an era when there were few children specific programmes on TV. Having Broadcast almost 5,000 episodes since its launch in 1958, it's also the longest-running children's show to date.

Blue Peter

Blue Peter was created by John Hunter Blair, with its name relating to the blue and white flag that's hoisted when a ship is ready to set sail. The idea behind the name was explained by its creator as the show taking viewers on a "voyage of discovery and adventure", in the same way as a ship takes its passengers on an adventure.

According to many fans, the height of the show’s popularity was in the late 1960s and early 1970s, when it featured the regular team of presenters including Lesley Judd, Peter Purves, Valerie Singleton, John Noakes and their famous collie dog, Shep. Noakes' famous catchphrase, "Get down, Shep!" was legendary - in 1978, pop group the Barron Knights even released a record of the same name, which entered the pop charts!

The show first aired in colour in the '70s and for many children, it became compulsive viewing, as there were plenty of ideas in Blue Peter's arts and crafts section for items they could make at home. The presenters' ability to transform an empty washing up liquid bottle and a bit of sticky-back plastic into all sorts of fascinating playthings was legendary!

One of their most enduring creations, the Advent crown was a Christmas decoration made using four wire coat hangers, four lengths of tinsel, four matching baubles and a bigger decoration for the centre. The coat hangers were twisted together and tied with thinner wire to make the base that was then wrapped in tinsel, with the baubles added last for decoration. The idea was to add a bauble to mark each week of Advent.

The traditional Christmas decoration was lovingly made on Blue Peter every year for more than half a century, with each generation of presenters following the time-honoured design and every new generation of kids trying their hand at making it. It created an opportunity for parents and kids to enjoy activities together too.

In early programmes, John Noakes would add candles and light them live on the show. However, as health and safety guidelines were toughened up over the years, it was recommended not to use them at home because of the fire risks.

In 2011, a stunt involving the Advent crown led to a backlash from former presenters, after Blue Peter host Joel Defries turned on a new 'chain reaction' machine to trigger the show's Christmas lights switch-on. However, it got out of hand and melted the Advent crown and a Blue Peter badge!

Afterwards, former presenter Anthea Turner described the stunt as "sacrilege", saying the Advent Crown was part of Blue Peter's tradition, so why broadcast an episode in which it was destroyed? The BBC responded by saying it hadn't received any complaints from viewers about the incident.

Other notable arts and crafts creations made on the show included a model of the Thunderbirds' Tracy Island, origami hearts, goodie-filled piñatas for parties, various craft animals - dogs were always a favourite - elaborate 3D greetings cards, decorated plant pots and even your own table football game! Literally hundreds of arts and crafts items were created and made over the years, some of which are undoubtedly still in viewers' homes to this day.

Blue Peter

The famous Blue Peter Badge is a much-coveted and recognised reward for viewers. Members of the public who achieve something notable or those who have appeared on the show are awarded the badge, which entitles them to free entry into many visitor attractions in the UK. The presenters wear their badge at all times and it remains a recognised symbol of the show to this day.

If you're a fan of Blue Peter's arts and crafts creations or if you're someone who enjoys making your own designs, you will need somewhere safe to store your materials. Solent Plastics provides a selection of storage products which could be used for different arts and crafts projects. Check out our full range of arts and crafts storage solutions on our website or contact our knowledgeable advisors to find the best product for your needs… and don’t forget you double-sided sticky tape!