From Teddy bears to sputniks...firearms to edible modelling clay. This is the range of playthings?
From Teddy bears to sputniks...firearms to edible modelling clay. This is the range of playthings on exhibition at the British Toy Fair which opened at Brighton Feb 16.
Visnews was there to film some of the novelties which have placed Britain in the forefront of toy manufacture. In fact, some of the toy firearms - particularly sub-machine guns - are now so realistic that Middle Eastern and South American buyers have insisted on them being painted in bright colours.
Although the "space age" is well represented with sputniks and rockets in "do-it-yourself" kits, the traditional soft toys such as the Teddy bear still retain their popularity.
Edible modelling clay is a new feature of the toy world. It smells of vanilla, and tasted of salt. Said one director of the firm producing the clay: "It is not intended for infant consumption but if they do eat it they will not come to any harm..."
For girls there are "Dress up like Mummy" outfits with bridal and evening gowns, for boys a service garage, complete with electrically-operated car washers, lifts and ramps.
Scale models of prehistoric animals stand alongside suits of toy armour, introduced last year and developed in variations of plate and mail for this year's exihibition.
British toy exports have steadily increased since the war and as a result this year's fair has overflowed from the Brighton seafront hotels into municipal buildings.
Japanese manufacturers are reported to be attending the Fair.
This news has caused concern among some exhibitors and visitors will not be allowed to take cameras into the exhibition. Several manufacturers say they will not allow Japanese to see their exhibits -- even without cameras.