Sara and Hoppity (partially found children's puppet TV series; 1962-1963)

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The show's title card.

Status: Partially Found

Sara & Hoppity was a children's puppet television series created by Roberta Leigh, who had previously created The Adventures of Twizzle and Torchy the Battery Boy, both of which were directed by Gerry Anderson. Produced by Roberta Leigh and directed by Arthur Provis, Sara and Hoppity was the first production by Leigh and Arthur Provis after Anderson had gone on to create other puppet series such as Supercar under AP Films. The show was based on a series of children's books by Leigh written in 1960-1961 and was commissioned by Associated-Rediffusion.[1] Certain puppets from the series would later be revamped for use in Provis and Leigh's next series, Space Patrol.


The series revolves around Sara Brown, who lives with her parents, above their Toy Repair Shop, "The Toy Hospital." One day an old man brings in a broken windup toy, called Hoppity, to sell. He found the toy in a goblin ring and is a magic toy. The toy, called "Hoppity," can sing and dance, but it is a "falling over dance" as the toy only has one leg. Her parents want nothing to do with the toy, but Miss Julie, who lives up in the attic and makes clothes for all the toys, gives Sara the money to buy Hoppity.

The old man accepts sixpence, and Sara washes the dirty toy while her father finds a leg for the toy, but it is a bit shorter than his other leg. When wound up, the toy dances and sings his annoying: "Tiddlee-tum, tiddlee-tee" song which Sara somehow understands and, being very naughty, Hoppity's ideas often lead Sara into trouble. Though she tells them that Hoppity told her to do it, naturally, no one believes her.


The show ran for 52 13-minute episodes on ITV, running from February 27th, 1962, to February 26th, 1963, though the series copyright date dates back to 1961. The series was syndicated at least until the early 1970s. Since then, the series' original tapes have disappeared from the archives of the Associated-Rediffusion archive. They were most likely destroyed or wiped and used for other programming.

A 16mm print of the pilot episode of the series discovered in the 1990s under the possession of Leigh herself was found along with the 16mm reels of the complete series of Space Patrol. This version would appear to be the pilot produced to sell the series and not the actual first episode seen on television. The copyright given is 1960, not 1961, which is when it was among the first three completed and delivered to Associated-Rediffusion. Comments made by Head of Programme Clearances, Joan Elman, regarding the first episode of Sara & Hoppity (among other unflattering comments on the series) also suggest there were other elements in the televised version that are not in the pilot. [2]

In 2002, a 35mm print of another episode was discovered in possession of the British Film Institute/National Film Archive. This episode was "Gorgey Georgie Goes Visiting," the 46th episode of the series. Apart from this, a small audio-less bit of footage from the episode "Aunt Mathilda's Hat," along with private sound recordings of the show exists. None of these, however, are available online.

List of Episodes

No. Title Airdate Prod No. Current Status
N/A Sara and Hoppity (Pilot Version) N/A 0 Found (Unavailable)
1 Sara and Hoppity 2/27/1962 1 Lost
2 Hoppity Is Stolen 3/6/1962 2 Lost
3 Sara and Hoppity Bake A Cake 3/13/1962 3 Lost
4 Sara and Hoppity and the Shaggy Dog 3/20/1962 4 Lost
5 Sara's Friend has an Accident 3/27/1962 5 Lost
6 Shaggy Is Taught Some Tricks 4/3/1962 6 Lost
7 Sara and Hoppity Go Skating 4/10/1962 7 Lost
8 Washing Day 4/17/1962 52 Lost
9 Sara and the Broken Toys 4/24/1962 8 Lost
10 Shaggy in Trouble 5/1/1962 9 Lost
11 A Present for Miss Julie 5/8/1962 10 Lost
12 Gorgey Georgie Comes to Stay 5/15/1962 11 Lost
13 Aunt Mathilda's New Dress 5/22/1962 13 Lost
14 Gorgey Georgie Is Naughty Again 5/29/1962 14 Lost
15 Sara and Hoppity Get Lost 6/5/1962 15 Lost
16 Sara's Birthday 6/12/1962 16 Lost
17 Sara Does The Spring Cleaning 6/19/1962 17 Lost
18 Gorgey Georgie Comes To Tea 6/26/1962 18 Lost
19 Sara And The Junk Man 7/3/1962 19 Lost
20 Sara and Hoppity Help Mummy 7/10/1962 20 Lost
21 Hoppity Does Something Wrong 7/17/1962 21 Lost
22 A New Hat For Mummy 7/24/1962 22 Lost
23 A New Kite 7/31/1962 23 Lost
24 Fun on the Sands 8/7/1962 24 Lost
25 A Present for Jimmy 8/14/1962 26 Lost
26 Shaggy and the Flowers 8/21/1962 27 Lost
27 Sara and Hoppity Clean the Shop 8/28/1962 28 Lost
28 Sara And Hoppity Do The Wallpapering 9/4/1962 29 Lost
29 Pancake Day 9/11/1962 31 Lost
30 Aunt Mathilda's Hat 9/18/1962 32 Lost
31 Jimmy Comes To Tea 9/25/1962 33 Lost
32 The Goldfish Pond 10/2/1962 35 Lost
33 The Coalman Comes To Call 10/9/1962 36 Lost
34 Mummy Loses her Ring 10/16/1962 37 Lost
35 A Visit to the Seaside 10/23/1962 38 Lost
36 Sara Goes To School 10/30/1962 39 Lost
37 A Day at the Beach 11/6/1962 40 Lost
38 The Lonely Junk Man 11/13/1962 41 Lost
39 The Brass Band 11/20/1962 42 Lost
40 The Painting Competition 11/27/1962 43 Lost
41 A Day in Bed 12/4/1962 44 Lost
42 Sara and Father Christmas 12/11/1962 12 Lost
43 Father Christmas and the Presents 12/18/1962 47 Lost
44 A Birthday Cake for Daddy 1/1/1963 25 Lost
45 The Snowman 1/8/1963 30 Lost
46 Sara and Hoppity Quarrel 1/15/1963 45 Lost
47 Gorgey Georgie Goes Visiting 1/22/1963 46 Found (Unavailable)
48 The Fancy Dress Party 1/29/1963 51 Lost
49 Sara is Naughty 2/5/1963 34 Lost
50 Hoppity and The Jelly 2/12/1963 48 Lost
51 The Grandfather Clock 2/19/1963 48 Lost
52 The Windy Day 2/26/1963 50 Lost

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