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TITLE
Memories of a showman - 'Felix the Cat'
EXTERNAL ID
GB1796_SINCLAIR_WILLHAY_09
PERIOD
1980s; 1990s
CREATOR
Will Hay
SOURCE
Inverness Museum and Art Gallery
ASSET ID
2291
KEYWORDS
showmen
carnivals
circuses
funfairs
puppets
puppet shows
fairgrounds
audio

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Will Hay was a northern showman and Punch and Judy puppeteer. He came from a family of travelling entertainers; his great grandfather, John Morrison, had joined Pindar's Circus when it was on tour in Sutherland while his grandfather, William Duncan Morrison, and uncle, Duncan Morrison, put on Punch and Judy shows in and around Inverness. The Morrisons were also well-known for their bone-setting skills.

In this audio extract, Will talks about one of the side-shows - 'Felix the Cat'.

Then we had Felix the Cat - that was another thing. That was all - Ye can manufacture these things now on machines. In them days they were all made by hand. An we had a Felix the Cat, an this was a big figure about the size of a man. An again, he was - arm was pulled back, with elastic bands, an the other one was held up rigid, ye see, like that. Now, this hand was held up an ye stuck a coconut in it, an ye had to belt hell oot this hand, an when ye knocked the hand up, this released the elastic - wheeet! - an you'd throw the coconut, an ye'd to try an catch it, an if ye didn't get it in the eye, ye're lucky. But the thought of all these things in them days now, well these things can be manufactured on machines now

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Memories of a showman - 'Felix the Cat'

1980s; 1990s

showmen; carnivals; circuses; funfairs; puppets; puppet shows; fairgrounds; audio

Inverness Museum and Art Gallery

Bill Sinclair Audio: Will Hay, Memories of a Showman

Will Hay was a northern showman and Punch and Judy puppeteer. He came from a family of travelling entertainers; his great grandfather, John Morrison, had joined Pindar's Circus when it was on tour in Sutherland while his grandfather, William Duncan Morrison, and uncle, Duncan Morrison, put on Punch and Judy shows in and around Inverness. The Morrisons were also well-known for their bone-setting skills. <br /> <br /> In this audio extract, Will talks about one of the side-shows - 'Felix the Cat'.<br /> <br /> Then we had Felix the Cat - that was another thing. That was all - Ye can manufacture these things now on machines. In them days they were all made by hand. An we had a Felix the Cat, an this was a big figure about the size of a man. An again, he was - arm was pulled back, with elastic bands, an the other one was held up rigid, ye see, like that. Now, this hand was held up an ye stuck a coconut in it, an ye had to belt hell oot this hand, an when ye knocked the hand up, this released the elastic - wheeet! - an you'd throw the coconut, an ye'd to try an catch it, an if ye didn't get it in the eye, ye're lucky. But the thought of all these things in them days now, well these things can be manufactured on machines now