Giant Hartlepool Pudsey Bear inflatable unveiled ahead of Children in Need day

Hartlepool’s latest giant inflatable is one paw-esome sight.

Thursday, 18th November 2021, 4:51 pm
Updated Thursday, 18th November 2021, 5:30 pm

The 23ft-plus high replica of Pudsey Bear was unveiled at a secret location in Hartlepool ahead of its expected appearance on BBC1’s Children in Need charity extravaganza on Friday night.

It is the latest in a series of creations commissioned and purchased by a mystery group of people known as The Wombles of Hartlepool.

Previous plastic characters to suddenly appear at locations across town this year include Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Hartlepool United football mascot H’Angus the Monkey.

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Pudsey Bear is unveiled at a secret Hartlepool location. Picture by FRANK REID

The group maintains it has no political affiliations and that the inflatables are merely meant to cheer folk up while on occasions also supporting other people’s fundraising activities.

Pudsey Bear, the famed mascot of Children in Need, is expected to make his way across the M62 on Friday to appear from Salford as part of BBC1’s evening broadcast.

A member of The Wombles of Hartlepool said: “It was an honour to help after the BBC contacted us on hearing about our Pudsey.

"As far as we are aware it is the only one of its kind and the biggest Pudsey in the world.”

Prime Minister Boris Johnson next to a giant inflatable of himself during a visit to Hartlepool after Conservative candidate Jill Mortimer won the Hartlepool by-election in May.

Pudsey is the latest in a series of around 15 inflatables to be unveiled by the group.

The Wombles member added: “In time we hope to build up a bit of a library on Google Images where when you type in Hartlepool or the name of a character one of our pictures comes up.

A giant inflatable of Hartlepool United mascot H'Angus the Monkey appeared at Hartlepool's Historic Quay ahead of the club's play-off final in June.

"We just want it to be a bit of fun and to enjoy what we do. We’ve got all sorts of different characters but don’t want to say too much.”

While it may be next year before the inflatable Pudsey makes an appearance in Hartlepool, another one of the group’s characters may make its debut rather sooner.

Our Wombles mole added: “Weather permitting, another one of our characters could be unveiled in Hartlepool over the coming days or weeks.

“It is a case of keep watching this space.”

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