It's fun being a puppeteer and for several years I played the monkey Topov in the television series Pipkins.  It was broadcast in the 1970s and 80s.  Topov was the youngest character and always had a lot to learn.  Hartley, a bumptious hare, thought he knew everything.  He was often mean to Topov and Pig and Tortoise and all the other characters too. But Hartley didn't know everything and often got things wrong.  This never stopped him from misbehaving though. 

A lot of grown ups remember Pipkins and a few years ago we made a Pipkins story for the twenty-first century.

Here I am operating Topov.   I'm looking underneath the table at a television monitor.  The monitor is showing me what I'm doing with my puppet.   I'm concentrating hard to get Topov's movements right.

This is a picture of me and Topov.  I like to think that he and I are good friends.  I don't like it when Hartley Hare is horrid.  Neither does Topov.

In this picture, Heather Tobias and I are operating our puppets out of doors.  We're both looking at the monitor to see what we're doing and we've got our scripts on our knees in case we forget our lines.

Topov and I are having a chat.  I'm saying, "Topov, take no notice of Hartley Hare."

Paul Jomain made all the puppets and here he is holding Topov and Pig.

Here's Hartley Hare being nice FOR A CHANGE!  If only he were like that always.

This is the Pipkins team. From left to right, Pig operated by Heather Tobias, Hartley Hare operated by Nigel Plaskitt, Topov operated by me and, in the front, the presenter Jonathan Kidd.

If you would like to watch some of the programmes there are three DVDs to purchase. Amazon is a good place to try or for more information go to Nigel Plaskitt's website. His website is listed in Contact Info as is Paul Jomain's.