Sunday, 1 July 2018

World's Press News and Advertiser's Review and Frank Bellamy - PART ONE

WORLD'S PRESS NEWS AND ADVERTISERS' REVIEW 

World's Press News 18 January 1952

Boy, have I got something for you...Frank Bellamy artwork hardly seen in 60 years!

I've said it before and I'll keep it saying it, we are indebted for the best interview with Frank Bellamy, to Dave Gibbons and Dez Skinn. In the illustrated interview there is an image of Father Christmas reading a paper that has just come rolling off the presses (I'll show that one later in the year!) with best wishes for Christmas from the Daily Telegraph to its advertisers! I've spoken to several people who wondered about Bellamy's illustrations for the Daily Telegraph but to my knowledge he never did any in the newspaper but did do them for the newspaper. 


The World's Press News and Advertisers' Review had covers showing the Daily Telegraph being advertised on them between Jan 1951 and June 1951 before Bellamy's run which is the subject of this and the next article on this blog. Bellamy's full page black and white (with splash single colour) adverts all appeared inside on page 2 opposite the Contents Page. Page 2 took advertising from Woman, Home Chat and other magazines in between the Daily Telegraph appearances, thus the gaps in dates in the following listing. After the Bellamy run, the Daily Telegraph continued advertising but their adverts are not illustrated much after this. Bellamy's adverts were a highlight in my opinion, and I love his design work.

I've checked with the experts (thanks Tony) and World's Press News and Advertisers' Review  ran from 7 March 1929 to 6 September 1968.  It's strapline was The national weekly for press and advertising and a little bit of trivia I found, apparently Anne Robinson (of the Weakest Link fame) started her career at WPN, as it was known.

Tony (whose site Magforum is phenomenal in scope and fascinating in content) sent me the following information and I've added links to his site which is worth a day or three browsing!
One link that might be worth making is that Haymarket was run by Michael Heseltine (and is to this day). The company was originally called Cornmarket. It nearly went bust in about 1962 publishing Topic, a news weekly, and Town - which had been Man AboutTown with that first issue cover by Bellamy. The printers, Hazell Watson & Viney, saved it and it became Haymarket. WPN became Campaign which was their great success as a weekly trade title for the advertising industry. Michael Potter was the publishing manager and he went on to found Redwood in 1984 with ex-Daily Express editor Christopher Ward. I worked for them and we were taken over by the BBC - that was the start of Good Food, Gardeners' World, etc.

Thanks again Tony.

The first page that Bellamy illustrated was in WPN on 14 December 1951 and I've titled it "Christmas greetings". Unfortunately I don't own a single one of these magazines so have black and white photocopies to share here with my added notes on the colour splashes! But it's summer so let's skip the two (or maybe three Christmas images for now). So we start this series with ...
"SPACEBUYER"
Hopefully you'll agree with my shorthand titles of these pieces. I suspect someone forgot to tell the WPN that this feature is called "Features that pull" - as you'll see later.

"Spacebuyer" is at the top of this blog article where we're looking at a gentleman who dreams of the ideal place to set his advertisement, and of course that's the Daily Telegraph. Why? Because they have 'discriminating readers' and each of the sections, the DT has, show the variety which will help advertisers attract the right people. Please note the list which Bellamy has lettered because these titles are the things Bellamy goes on to illustrate in this series.

This second advert (remember we are skipping Christmas for now) was published 5 weeks after the Christmas one (on 18 January 1952) and is signed FAB (for Frank Alfred Bellamy). In this we see the classic Bellamy devices in his question marks leading the reader to the -very wordy - message, and the shading on the buyer himself. This 'black' grabs the attention and the rest of the buyer's desk is outlined as our the objects. Maybe I ought to explain that the 'rocking-horse'-type object which is a blotter for drying fountain pen ink. I found the 'boundary half-circle' drawn on the right an interesting addition as it helps keep the reader on that page by spotlighting the feature.

World's Press News 22 February 1952

The next piece, "The Woman’s Page" appeared on 22 February 1952. We see knitting yarn and sewing thread connect the various elements of topics for women, ranging from the housewife's needs, at the top, to the debutante's at the bottom-left. The text states "100,000 letters received" which isn't too unbelievable in the time of the rise of the 'housewife' in the 1950s. The sexist portrayal of her man sitting smoking his pipe and reading the paper (the Telegraph no doubt!) is further embedded by his back being turned to all her interests and concerns! Bellamy uses a single line to outline this. The stippling on the debutante's gown adds some weight or closure to the piece.

The next illustration appears on the 14 March 1952 edition and features “Motoring” and is signed FAB again.

World's Press News 14 March 1952
I have no idea when it comes to cars (my VW Polo gets me from A to B) but a little research suggests Bellamy has shown a simplified version of perhaps a 12 horse-power Panhard from c.1902 with an outlined car behind (any suggestions gratefully received!). The registration plate seems so deliberate I wondered if it was a phone number. The Internet confirmed what I thought, that CEN could be "CENtral" London.But sometimes the best approach is to directly ask....

Further to your enquiry our Library has confirmed that Central4242 was indeed the Telegraph's official phone number from March 1930 to July 18 1955, when it changed to Fleet Street 4242.

Kind regards
Julie Marsh

Julie Marsh
Reader Relations
I am so grateful to the Daily Telegraph for their help! I did wonder why Bellamy drew the zebra crossing with the spanner, fan belt(?) oil can and footsteps, beyond just making that connecting device again. The gentleman at the bottom, leaning on his car has his binoculars and is smoking and his car has some lovely stippling.

World's Press News 18 April 1952

"Theatre" appears next, on 18 April 1952, and again is signed (bottom-left hand corner) and we have a line which weaves across the image creating footlights, and tragic and comic masks. The stippling on the thespian's feet and cloak are lovely as a contrast and the 'Ginger Rogers' dancer is nice. I'm no Shakespeare scholar but I know Hamlet and therefore discovered Wikipedia tells me that "The earliest printed image of Hamlet holding Yorick's skull is a 1773 engraving by John Hall after a design by Edward Edwards in Bell's edition of Shakespeare's plays"

World's Press News 2 May 1952
“Who is Peterborough?" The column's title came from Peterborough Court, whose inscription can still be seen over a door at 135 - 141 Fleet Street where the Daily Telegraph building still stands (although currently occupied by Goldman Sachs). The British Listed Buildings site conveniently shows us just that. The nom de plume 'Peterborough' hid the writer's identity. Many well known British writers were Peterborough including Sebastian Faulks, Daily Telegraph editor Charles Moore, Petronella Wyatt, W. F. Deedes and Quentin Letts. The column, which began in 1929 changed its name in 2003 to "London Spy", not quite as enigmatic, in my opinion!
I love this image for its quirky long diagonal. Interestingly Bellamy shows a man whose work environment reminds me of Dicken's "Christmas Carol", the quill pen and desk speak of "old fashioned-ness", one of the reasons for the 2003 change! Notice how Bellamy letters the sheets of paper. I did consider looking through 'Peterborough's' articles to see if these headers appeared but decided my life is too short and I was being a bit obsessive!

The 16 May 1952 issue of World's Press News reprinted the "Peterborough" image above from 2 May.

World's Press News 27 June 1952
The next one in the series is 27 June 1952 “Here’s the sport" - again signed subtlety in the left hand corner by the bicycle handlebars! My favourite bit of this is the domesticated scene, a knitted tea cosy, Mum wears her apron and Dad has his briefcase and umbrella ready for his commute to the city! But I wonder who or what young 'Johnny' is doing reading the back page! The caricatures are lovely too.

Many thanks to David Jackson for helping me by cleaning up my rough photocopies
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PARTS TWO and THREE to follow