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Michael Bond honoured at memorial service

Licensing names among those attending special service at St Paul’s for Paddington author.

A memorial service was held yesterday (November 14) at St Paul’s Cathedral to celebrate the life of Michael Bond, creator of Paddington Bear.

The service was attended by over 1,300 family, friends and colleagues including animators who had worked on the original Paddington television series in the 1970s and cast and crew of the current Paddington 2 movie.

Also present were many licensing people from the UK, Europe and the US, as well as many past and present members of Copyrights which has represented the licensing of Paddington since 1984.

These included Anthony Temple, Zara Grindrod and Alys Dawson from Rainbow Designs, Karen Addison, Keith Pashley and John Davy, plus Nicholas Durbridge and Rebecca Langston from Copyrights, as well as Max Publishing’s Ian Hyder and Jakki Brown.

Tributes were led by Michael’s daughter Karen Jankel and Ann-Janine Murtagh, executive publisher of Harper Collins Children’s Books. Excerpts from Michael’s books were read by his grandchildren and a prayer was read by Copyrights’ chairman Nicholas Durbridge which ended ‘Please look after this Author. Thank you.’

The service concluded with Hugh Bonneville and other Paddington 2 cast members reading out tributes which had been received by Michael’s family from Paddington fans around the world.

As one fan succinctly wrote ‘Goodnight Michael Bond. Thank you for writing the books that taught me to read and to want to read more’.

Many thanks to Nicholas Durbridge for his contribution in this piece.

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