I  cannot remember when I was given my first Teddy Bear; he was always there as long as I can remember. He was  fairly standard as teddy bears go with golden brown fur, buttons for eyes & nose with black stitching for his mouth.   He stood about 15” tall.


He was named by my parents very imaginatively as Teddy. He might not have been anything special to look at but he was my Teddy. Where I went he went and I wouldn’t and couldn’t go to sleep without him beside me. When the time came to move on and away from cuddly toys Teddy didn’t drop out of the frame.


We lived in a council house without central heating and electric blankets were not around. During cold winter spells the way to keep warm in bed was to add more and more blankets. The problem, or at least my problem, was that there was always a gap down my back to let in the cold.


Teddy plugged that hole beautifully.


I didn’t have the courage to take him with me when I joined the RAF for my National Service but he was conscripted back into service when I was

demobbed. He did his duty until I got married when three in a bed was

unacceptable; however he wasn’t left behind but was transported in a

cardboard box to the marital home.


After a while he re-emerged and sat in a corner of our bedroom for quite a few years until we moved home. Again he was packed in a box and came with us and sat in the corner of our new bedroom.


By this time we had three sons who thought it odd that their dad had a teddy bear when they had already discarded theirs. From time to time he went missing for days at a time and would mysteriously re-appear, usually looking the worse for wear.


I could never prove it but I had a feeling that he was pegged onto the washing line by his ears and used as target practice. A possible confirmation of this was when he re-appeared with one ear missing. Three angelic faces denied any knowledge of having any part in this amputation.


One day Teddy was not there and never returned, much to everyone’s total surprise, but then my sons have always been good actors.


I still mourn for Teddy who I assume was “missing in action presumed killed”. I didn’t even have a telegram to help closure on this sad event.



John Roberts


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