Travel talks

BBC Travel Talks cover by CW Bacon artist
BBC booklets have graced these digital pages before. And before that. The BBC always produced lovely pamphlets to accompany their Broadcasts to Schools programmes. With commercial illustrators running out the covers (in the 1930s at least) in crisp black and white niceness.

The CWB scratched in to the lower right corner here, was Cecil Walter Bacon, master of B&W scraperboard illustration. So much so he authored a book about the things for Studio Publications in 1951.

CWB was known for his Radio Times work, these pamphlets must have been done as an offshoot of that work. Probably commissioned by chaps across the corridor at Broadcasting House. And the BBC certainly got value out of their covers, as there is another version of this cover on Flickr, on a Regional Geography pamphlet cover.

Bacon is what I would term a Puffin or Ladybird artist and it is a wonder he never worked for either. He did do some nice other things, including the ubiquitous posters for London Transport.

I love the little nod to modernity on this cover – the electricity pylons stretching out into the distant countryside. Meanwhile the children discuss places far and wide. After listening to the Travel Talks on the BBC, of course.

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