Sunday, 2 December 2012

Frank Bellamy and Outspan magazine

I have been searching for Outspan magazines for 12 years after having been to the British Library to actually find the details of Bellamy's run in that magazine title. Martin Baines, who colours the current reprints of Bellamy's Garth, asked me whether I could write something on Outspan and I can't refuse him a favour as he has been so kind to me (and you too!)

I need to tell you I do not own a single copy of Bellamy's work in Outspan so all the illustrations you see are photos taken with my camera of the photocopies I ordered from the British Library. 

"Timeliner" by Charles Eric Maine.

The Outspan ("A South African weekly for everybody"), copied the successful format of the UK Everybody's magazine, but the former was published in Bloemfontein, South Africa, starting in 1927 and later became Personality with the 6 June 1957 issue and continued until 23 Dec.1965 when it ceased, probably due to the same reason UK magazines disappeared around the mid-sixties - television

"Timeliner" by Charles Eric Maine.

It was apparently launched by The Friend Newspapers Limited on 4 March 1927 and was extremely popular. The magazine format was similar to the fifties Everbody's I have seen. "Thorough modernisation took place in 1957 when The Outspan reappeared as the fortnightly Personality on 6 June. Past contributors included Agatha Christie, Wernher von Braun, Admiral Donitz, Stuart Cloete, Denis Compton, Eddie Cantor, Major-General Sir Francis de Guingand, Donald Campbell, P G Wodehouse, Viscount Montgomery, Adolf Eichmann and Manuel Fangio. Early editors of The Outspan (and Personality from 6 June 1957) included A W Wells (1927-1939), Gordon Makepeace (1939-1953), W R G Legge (1953-1955), C H H Barry (1955-1960), D S Garnett (1960-1963), R A Short (1963-1971), G Brennan (1971) and Leon Bennett (1972)." - taken from MyFundi.

"Fear is a spotted cat" by Elaine Mans
One of my favourite pieces by Bellamy of this period is the above. It's so atmospheric. I can feel the fear


"The Satan flower" by Peter Monnow
Lastly below are two pages (download  them and stitch them together - don't forget to send me a copy! Or see a rough line-up in the accompanying note to Outspan on the website ). The author of this article, Edna Henkel, wrote in September 1956, a grateful letter to Bellamy saying he'd "drawn a figure that looks like me without having seen me" and she goes on to mention that Wide World might publish some of her stories


"I was stalked by a panther" by Edna Henkel

"I was stalked by a panther" by Edna Henkel

To read more details - see my Magazines page on the website. Bellamy was proud enough of these assignments to mention them whenever outlining his career. I personally prefer them to his Everybody's work but they are so elusive. If you have copies I would really value talking to you either for sales or scans, contact me at:

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