The Action for Children’s Arts J.M.Barrie Award is given annually to a children’s arts practitioner or organisation whose work, in the view of ACA, will stand the test of time. The J.M.Barrie Award was formerly the ACA Peter Pan Award, presented as part of the Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity Awards.
Bernard Cribbins has featured in many iconic BBC Children’s programmes over the last 40 years, including Jackanory, The Wombles, and most recently Old Jack’s Boat on CBeebies. In 2007 he appeared in the Doctor Who Christmas special, Voyage of the Damned, playing Wilfred Mott. The character returned in Series 4 where it was revealed Wilfred was the grandfather of Donna Noble and he had regular appearances in the series, ultimately being the catalyst for the tenth Doctor's regeneration at the conclusion of The End of Time.
Cribbins first contact with Doctor Who came in the 1966 feature film Daleks' Invasion Earth 2150 A.D., where he played Tom Campbell alongside Peter Cushing's portrayal of 'Dr Who'
The award was presented at the BBC's Headquarters at Broadcasting House in central London at a ceremony attended by the BBC’s Director General Tony Hall and a range of Cribbins colleagues from across the decades, including Chris Jarvis, CBeebies presenter and writer on Old Jack’s Boat; actress Jan Francis; former Blue Peter Presenter Peter Duncan; and Kate Robertson, daughter of Elisabeth Beresford, creator of the Wombles. Messages were received from Sir George Martin, Russell T Davies and John Barrowman.
Also in attendance were Jenny Agutter and Gary Warren, who played The Railway Children in the 1970 film, which co-starred Cribbins as station master Albert Perks.
Speaking about the event Joe Godwin Director of BBC Children’s said
I’m so pleased that the BBC and ACA have joined forces to give this wonderful award to a real hero of children’s film and television. Bernard has been a big part of so many of our childhoods, and now as the star of Old Jack’s Boat, he’s a huge star for a new generation.Russell T Davies who has worked with Bernard Cribbins on Doctor Who and most recently on the CBeebies series Old Jack Boat sent a message:
It is brilliant to see children’s arts being recognised in this way. The art, fiction and images we see as a child stay with us for the rest of our lives’