A television series created by a first-time dad from South Norwood has hit the 1million viewer mark in just six months.
Dom and Jenny Williams were expecting their first child when he came up with the idea for Sunny Bank Allotments, an animated series for pre-schoolers named after their home street and a much-loved local green space, which he wrote both as a gift to his unborn child and as an attempt to get away from the type of programmes his friends with children said they were fed up of watching.
“When you are expecting a first child you know people are going to warn you about the sleepless nights and the lack of time and how much life changes,” Williams told Inside Croydon.
“But I noticed for a lot of parents one of the things that really drove them bonkers was their children’s television programmes – often with storylines that didn’t seem to promote strong family values or reflect the interests of the children I knew.
“Most children I know love nature, animals, the outdoors and are excited by the idea of grow your own. I was disappointed not to see any shows reflecting all these themes.
“You read all the same things online in parenting forums and there have even been polls run in national newspaper about the kids’ TV programmes parents hate the most.”
Williams started writing the storyline based around a little boy and girl who carried the names (Pippa and Barney) he and his wife had chosen for their baby before they knew what gender it would be. He worked with an illustrator to design the characters and settings, before going on to animate them and bring them to life with the help of actors who he auditioned and cast through his other business Williams Bulldog Management, a talent agency. The TV show was then made through his Beckenham-based production company Smart Dog Productions Ltd.
“I hadn’t written anything like this before, but I was a very passionate parent-to-be and I wanted to produce something my child could enjoy in their early years and grow up to be proud of in later life.
“Feedback from friends, family and colleagues was always good but now it has reached the 1 million viewer mark online we know there is a real demand for it and we can start to think about selling in to a TV channel or a network so even more children can enjoy it.”
The series consists of 12 x 11-minute episodes and 12 accompanying books.
Details available at www.Sunnybank.TV where the episodes can also be watched.
They are also available to watch via the popular Kids YouTube Channel Wizz.
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