London 2012 - 2012 bear makers sold golliwogs

Sun, 14 Aug 11:32:00 2011

The company which manufactures the official London 2012 Olympics teddy bear has been slammed by athletics stars for selling golliwogs.

London 2012 - 2012 company sold gollies

Merrythought, based in Ironbridge, Shropshire, has sold more than 1,000 of its gold mohair Olympic ceremonial bears, which retail at 79.95.

However it has also sold two versions of a golliwog, named Liquorice Lenny and Liquorice Lucy, for around 100 apiece. These were taken down off the company's website last week.

The golliwog, a traditional children's toy dating back to the 19th Century, has in modern times come to be regarded as a symbol of racism against black people from less-illuminated times.

Darren Campbell, who won gold for Britain in the 4x100m at the 2004 Games in Athens, told People Magazine the dolls were not in the Olympic spirit.

"Golliwogs are completely incompatible with the Olympic values of fairness and equality," he said.

Derek Redmond, also a black British former sprinter, added: "This is 2012, not 1912."

Merrythought declined to comment on the matter on Sunday morning.


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