Meet Ken and Cynthia, they are the main characters in a book that Beryl wrote with the help of her youngest granddaughter Sophie. Cynthia was knitted by Beryl to keep Ken company when he became separated from Barbie.
Here are the other characters appearing in Cynthia`s Story, they are all dolls knitted by Beryl.
This book came about as the result of a collaboration between Beryl and her youngest great granddaughter Sophie in the early 1990`s when Sophie was about 8 years old. John jnr, Teresa and Sophie would regularly join Beryl and John for a Sunday roast. Sophie always looked forward to this, `cos while John cooked the roast, Sophie and Beryl would get the dolls Cynthia and Ken out and then play with them on the side board. Very quickly they began to arrange adventures for them using some of the many interesting objects that Beryl had collected, as props. Soon Beryl was writing a story and Sophie was creating the sets, then they would take photos and use them to illustrate the story. The whole thing evolved and developed out of their games with the dolls together.
Meet Ethel below, she is a model designed by Beryl in the early 1970`s. She is the result of a collaboration between Beryl and her son John to produce contemporary [at the time] garden gnomes and gnomesses. Beryl designed Ethel and John sculpted her, then a local potter made some porcelain and terracotta samples. As you can see, Beryl then painted one of the terracotta models, the body colour works rather well as her suntan. Since then Ethel has lived in Beryl and John`s garden so her paintwork has become rather worn. You can see next to her an unpainted porcelain sister, and there is a concrete sister hiding elsewhere in John`s garden.
Owing to John juniors energies moving in a different direction this project never got further than the production of a few prototypes, much to Beryl`s sorrow.
Below you can see samples of another family project, the production of plaster wall plaques. Beryl designed these in the early 1970`s with the intention that John junior and his wife Teresa would produce and sell them. There are three models altogether, a lady in a bonnet, a bowling lady and a cat cleaning its paw. All the plaques were hand painted in a number of different colour combinations to Beryl`s approval, then sealed. Here are two versions of the lady,and one of the bowling lady, which is unsealed. One lady plaque was cast in concrete as an experiment, this has been in the garden for many years weathering. Then there is an unpainted lady, and finally the only one of the cat plaques that the family have still got. A small number of these plaques were given away to friends and relatives and sometimes these surface in boot sales or other odd places. Again, this is a project which was eventually abandoned due to John junior`s energies moving in other directions. There is now some consideration being given to the family reviving this project.