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Please see below a brief history of Sooty.
SOOTY came to life in 1948 when he was known as “ Teddy“, during a rainy day on a family holiday taken by the Corbett family in Blackpool. The little bear was spotted by Harry (who at the time was a engineer in Yorkshire and part time magician) on a shop on the pier. He paid a whole 7 shillings and 6 pence for the darling little puppet. His reason for buying him was to amuse his sons David and Peter#. But this little bear was destined for far greater audiences.
A special relationship between Harry and Sooty grew and grew until Sooty almost came alive, this was due to Harry’s brilliant ability to animate Sooty and to relay onto the audiences what Sooty had whispered to him.
# NOTE: Peter Corbett used the name Matthew Corbett as there was another Peter Corbett registered as a stage name.
1952: First TV appearance Talent Night and Saturday Special on the BBC.
1955-1967: Sooty got his own show the sooty show with Harry Corbett at the BBC.
1957: Sweep joined.
1964: Soo the Panda joined after her came other characters such as Kipper the Cat. Butch the Dog, Ramsbottom the Snake and 'Enry the Robot.
1968-1976: The Sooty Show with Harry switched to ITV.
1975: Harry had a heart attack.
1976: Matthew took over from his father.
1976-1992: The Sooty Show with Matthew remained ITV.
1989: Harry passed away at the age of 71.
1993-1995: Sooty & Co now on Granada TV.
1996: Sooty was made into a cartoon series Sooty's Amazing Adventures.
1997-1999: Sooty Heights with Richard Cadell & Liana Bridges.
1998: Matthew Corbett retires, diagnosed with chronic lymphatic leukaemia which was probably his main reason for retiring. Also Sooty is 50 on 19th july.
2001: Sooty begins a whole new life in the safe hands of Richard Cadell. Miki the female Brazilian Cat joined.
2008: Richard Cadell bought all the Rights to Sooty.
BYE BYE EVERYBODY BYE BYE
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The original bear was completely yellow, and Harry covered his ears and nose with soot so that he would show up better on black and white television - hence the puppet's name. And this is how it all goes...