The Death of Childhood: Drowned, Abandoned and Murdered Toys

WORDS: Gareth E. Rees

PHOTOS: Various excellent Twitter followers

At the end of their careers. Forgotten. Abandoned. Dealing with their demons.

The icons of our childhood don’t always have it easy.

Some fall prey to drugs and drink. Others can’t cope with their loss of fame and influence, becoming reckless or suicidal.

Winnie the Pooh, Mickey Mouse, Tinky Winky….

Their bloated corpses float in rivers, hang from trees, lie in underpasses.

But are these suicides? Deaths by misadventure? Or are we looking at murders here? A deliberate killing of the past by adults who feel compelled to fly-tip their childhoods in our nation’s edgelands.

You decide.

The following photos were contributed by Unofficial Britain’s Twitter followers in response to this shocking post from Gary Budden.

“The death of Winnie the Pooh. New River Path, near Manor House, London”

There followed more tragic images…

Paul Fixter : “Under the M621 in Leeds this morning”

 

Fife Psychogeographical Collective : Here’s Pudsey. [Editor’s note: he was never the same after the death of Wogan].

Christian Doubble : I stumbled upon this effigy literally in the middle of nowhere walking the South Downs Way this summer.

Dougie Taylor The Lonesome Death of Mickey Mouse, Glasgow

Tambay The drinking and eating did for Soo in the end too…

Jamie Delano : [Editor’s note: this looked to me like Eeyore but Jamie thinks is more canine, in which case, is this a celebrity icon death or just an unknown loser who died getting high? Either way, it’s very sad.]

Vicky Waters: “Looks like he’s never going home”

Angela‏ @twisterellla – there’s a lot going on in this one. There’s a classic troll to the left. Angela suggests that the central male figure is a naked Disney Aladdin. God only knows what the thing to his left is. Sometimes it’s best not to ask. What’s weird about this is that they’ve not been abandoned but, rather, hung out to dry.

Martin Fuller @DeadGull writes: “Spotted at Rainham this morning. Winter visitor?”

A depressing one from Rob @Notracksuits   

Luke Turner writes: “This poor lad is screaming for rescue from the stench of the food bin

Do you have any photos to add? You can contact us @BritUnofficial or via email (address is on our ‘About Us’ page here.)

For another bleak tale of childhood icons on the wane, take a look at this post: Sooty and Sweep – Where Are They Now?

More Articles for You

Re-weirding the Urban Landscape

Gareth E. Rees discusses the future folklore of industrial estates, pylons, motorways, ring roads, hospitals, housing estates, roundabouts and flyovers

Tales from a Covidian Landscape

These new images by photographer Nigel Dawson capture the eeriness of the Covid 19 landscape

Landscapes of Post-War Infrastructure: A Conversation with Painter, Jen Orpin

Gareth E. Rees & Jen Orpin discuss the memories and mythology of roads, motorways and service stations

A Yorkshire ‘Goonies’ Adventure Inside the Secret Tunnel of Holden Park

Patrick Wray recounts a childhood trip into the subterranean ruins of Oakworth House

Shadowlands: Light and Darkness on the Urban Edge

In Nigel Dawson’s photographic mutations of the everyday, human ghosts lurk within shadowy high-rise housing estates, derelict buildings and industrial edgelands.

Unofficial Britain’s Weird & Eerie Landscape Reads of 2020

Unofficial Britain’s editor, Gareth E. Rees, recommends some haunting books about place, memory and culture.