The Wombles, the much-loved children’s characters from the 1970s, have come out of hibernation to spread their positive message of local environmentalism.
The characters have been given a CGI-makeover, as part of a major relaunch that aims to inspire and mobilise a new generation of environmental enthusiasts.
A #WomblesWanted advertising campaign is encouraging members of the public to adopt positive (Womble-style) behaviour, from recycling to reusing and refurbishing old items rather than sending them to landfill.
The Wombles are also being used to promote Keep Britain Tidy’s Great British Spring Clean, the country’s largest mass-action environmental campaign, which takes place from March 20 to April 13.
This will be the first in a series of initiatives supported by The Wombles to encourage all of us to do more for our local environment in 2020, from recycling and collecting litter to reusing and refurbishing old items rather than sending them to landfill.
The CGI characters, which have been developed by The Wombles’ creative team, bring a new dimension and contemporary-feel to the characters without changing their classic look.
The CGI gives each Womble, including all of the classic characters – Orinoco, Great Uncle Bulgaria, Madame Cholet, Alderney, Tobermory, Wellington, Bungo and Tomsk – a full range of facial emotions and the
ability to talk.
A new series of scripts, balancing important environmental messages with the playful fun that made The Wombles so popular, is under-development.
The team behind The Wombles is in discussion with major studio partners and streaming platforms about bringing the original eco-warriors back to our screens in the near future.
The enduring appeal of The Wombles is demonstrated by the numerous Womble groups that have formed around the country in recent years to champion local environmental action.
A consumer poll conducted by the Radio Times in 2014 included The Wombles in a list of the top 10 most popular BBC TV children’s characters of all time.
Daniel Avener, chief executive of MDR Brand Management, who has been appointed to handle the brand extension and commercial partnerships programme for The Wombles, said: “The Wombles were the original eco-warriors and thanks to the original TV series many were inspired to take a greater interest in our environment.
“Given the challenges facing the planet today, it’s a perfect time for companies and brands to leverage such an iconic family of characters to build a positive platform to help spread the environmental message to recycle, reuse and rethink the way we live and consume on a daily basis.”