Enid Blyton's 'racist work' kicks up storm in English home town

Last Updated: Fri, Feb 15, 2013 06:58 hrs

London: Author Enid Blyton's home town in England, Beaconsfield is split over a festival planned to celebrate her books, with some locals claiming they are racist and offensive.

Organisers are planning a week of activities to honour the writer who died in 1968 at the age of 71, and want to erect a plaque where her house once stood.

But critics are opposing the move to honour the woman who became famous for her Noddy and Famous Five books, the Telegraph reports.

Many of her books have, since her death, been branded as racist or sexist and have had to be updated.

The golliwog owner of the Toytown garage in her Noddy Books has been replaced by 'Mr Sparks', while her work The Three Golliwogs is now The Three Bold Pixies.

The festival is being held in June in Beaconsfield, Bucks to mark the 75th anniversary since she moved to the town.

One opponent is architect Anthony Mealing, 63, who has described some of Blyton's work as 'racist and offensive', and is campaigning to stop the festival from going ahead.

He said that his grandmother, Annie Grigg, taught at a school near here where they had rather racist Enid Blyton stories issued free by the author to all the pupils in the 1950s.

Mealing, from High Wycombe, said he did not want to see a plaque erected.

Blyton first moved to a house in the town called Green Hedges with her husband, Major Hugh Pollock.

The author, who later divorced and remarried, spent most of her life there until she moved into a London nursing home, where she died.

The house was demolished in the early 1970s and the site is now called Blyton Close. 

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