This week marked 40 years since loveable litterpickers the Wombles first appeared on our TV screens.

The fictional furry creatures, who lived on Wimbledon Common, were known for their “make good use of bad rubbish” motto and eco-friendly message.

Writer Elisabeth Beresford was inspired to create the Wombles after walking on the Common with her children, who pronounced it “Wombledon”.

The characters first appeared in a series of children’s books in 1968 and later made it on to the screens in their own BBC TV show, first aired on Monday, February 5, 1973, and ran until 1975. 

Ms Beresford died, aged 84, in December 2010.