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  • Place of origin:

    London (photographed)

  • Date:

    24/10/1938 (photographed)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Sport & General Press Agency Ltd

  • Materials and Techniques:


  • Credit Line:

    Given by Gerald Morice

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This photograph shows puppeteers and members of the British Puppet and Model Theatre Guild standing outside Victory House, Leicester Square, for a Press Agency photograph to mark the opening of the 13th annual exhibition of the British Puppet and Model Theatre Guild at Victory House, Leicester Square. The exhibition was opened by the fourteen-year old Molly Sheldrake, billed as Britain's youngest Punch and Judy performer and seen kneeling in this photograph. The exhibition drew large crowds and ran from the 24th to the 30th October 1938, featuring almost 250 puppets and demonstrations by 25 different troupes giving about 70 demonstrations. There was a lot of publicity, and in his article on the exhibition in the periodical The World's Fair, 5 November 1938, Gerald Morice noted that Tuesday 25th October was a foggy, wet and cold day but that they filmed scenes from a marionette show all morning, from in front and behind, for British Movietone News. He added that all the national daily papers with the exception of The Daily Mirror carried stories about the exhibition, mostly with photographs, and that Molly as 'the youngest Punch and Judy performer in the country' really caught the press's imagination.

Physical description

Black and white press agency photograph of eight marionettes standing on the ground being manipulated by puppeteers whose heads are not in shot, with Molly Sheldrake, kneeling, holding a Mr. Punch, and a Judy with a baby.

Place of Origin

London (photographed)


24/10/1938 (photographed)


Sport & General Press Agency Ltd

Materials and Techniques


Marks and inscriptions

British Puppet Week. Exhibition at Victory House, Leicester Square, at which members of the British Puppet Guild are showing exhibits and taking part in displays, and which will last for a week. 576645 French and English Puppets arriving at the exhibition. S&G. 24/10/38. ETF
Stamped in blue ink verso

pencilled reference number, verso

Sport & General Press Agency. Limited, London
Stamped in blue ink, verso

This photograph must not be reproduced in any form without our official permit
Stamped in blue ink verso


Height: 21.5 cm, Width: 25.3 cm

Descriptive line

Photograph of puppets and the puppeteer Molly Sheldrake outside Victory House, Leicester Square. taken to advertise the opening of the 13th Exhibition of the British Puppet and Model Theatre Guild exhibition, 24 October 1938. Black and white photograph by the Sport & General Press Agency Ltd. Gerald Morice Collection.


Photographic paper




Photographs; Entertainment & Leisure; Children & Childhood


Theatre and Performance Collection

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