Poppy Cat cartoons just purrfect for ITV

A loveable cartoon cat created by a mother from Shropshire who died after a battle with cancer is set to take a bow on children’s television.

A loveable cartoon cat created by a mother from Shropshire who died after a battle with cancer is set to take a bow on children’s television.

Poppy Cat was created as a series of books by Lara Jones, who died in 2010 aged 34. A cartoon, voiced by Gavin and Stacey star Joanna Page, is already a success on satellite channel Nick Junior.

But from May 5 it will leap on to both ITV and CiTV, every Saturday and Sunday at 7am.

Poppy Cat toys will also be available from Shropshire-based Golden Bear, which is one of the UK’s leading toy companies.

Poppy Cat and pals who will soon be seen on ITV
Poppy Cat and pals who will soon be seen on ITV

The Poppy Cat books have sold more than 2.5 million copies worldwide since first being published by Macmillan in 2003.

Lara grew up in Telford and Wrekin where she had a childhood cat called Jumpy – who became the inspiration for the orange pet, Poppy Cat.

Lara returned to the area with her husband Shaun Clarke and her two children in 2003.

In 2004, Lara won the Sheffield Baby Book bronze award for Goodnight Poppy Cat and also the Booktrust Early Years award for Poppy Cat’s Farm in 2005.

Joanna Page
Joanna Page

Mr Clarke, said: “I am very proud of Lara and the success of Poppy Cat.

“It is sad that she isn’t here to see Poppy Cat spring to life from the page to the small screen but I know that she would be overjoyed, as I am.

“She was very proud of her Shropshire roots, and my family and I are still living here today. Joanna Page is fantastic as the voice of Poppy Cat and we look forward to watching it together as a family.”

The series features 26 11-minute episodes and is seen through the eyes of Poppy Cat’s young owner, a little girl also called Lara.

The Poppy Cat logo
The Poppy Cat logo

The Poppy Cat toys will be available from this autumn and will include soft toys and collectible figurines.

Christine Nicholls, product and marketing director at Golden Bear, said: “Poppy Cat is a vibrant, fun and educational series for pre-schoolers and we are honoured to be bringing the toys to fans in Shropshire and around the UK.

“Lara Jones has created truly memorable characters which will be enjoyed for many years to come.”