Monday 23 January 2017

Arfon’s Sponsored Friday the 13th Movie Marathon: CONCLUSION (originally posted 15/11/2015)

As I said in my previous post a technical fault had arisen resulting in two posts disappearing 'Happy Birthday RolandRat!' posted back on the 12th of March 2014 and 'Arfon’s Sponsored Friday the 13th Movie Marathon: CONCLUSION' originally posted on the 15th of November 2015 fortunately I am able upload them again but unfortunately it created some dead links and ruined the continuity... anyway, here it is again!

Well I did it! I completed my Sponsored ‘Friday the 13th Movie Marathon’ challenge and it was a great success I watched all 12 Friday the 13th movies back to back from 9:am Friday 13th to 5:30am Saturday 14th It took 20 and a half-hours to complete raising a total of £265 for Children in Need and every penny goes towards helping disadvantaged children across the UK! My sincere thanks to everyone that sponsored me thank you for your generosity! Thanks  to everyone that helped spread the word and posted encouraging messages throughout the day!  And a big thank you to my daughter for keeping out of the room and getting me a pizza and Mrs Jones for bringing me cakes from her Children in Need bake sale (of which they raised £200 for Children in Need!). As promised, I posted photographs of my progress during the day on Instagram.

Friday 13th 9:00am - Friday the 13th (1980) - 10:40am Friday the 13th Part 2 (1981)
Friday 13th 12:55pm Friday the 13th Part III (1982) -  2:30pm Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter (1984)
Friday 13th 4:00pm Friday the 13th: A New Beginning (1985) - 6:00pm Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives (1986)
Friday 13th 7:30pm Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood (1988) -  9:15pm Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan (1989)

Friday 13th 11:00pm Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday (1993) - Saturday 14th 12:30am Jason X (2001)

Saturday 14th Saturday 14th 2:00am Freddy vs. Jason (2003) - 3:50am Friday the 13th (2009)
 I stopped briefly during part 2 to be interviewed about the event by Brandon Williams for the Jason Mohammad late morning show on BBC Radio Wales I’ve uploaded the clip of it to my Youtube page should you be interested in hearing such things... If reading it is more your “bag” here's the interview transcribed for your convenience.
Introduction to the link by Jason Mohammad and Eggsy rather confused and distracted as they were dressing up in different items of fancy dress each hour of the show.)
Eggsy: “I love horror movies, absolutely,love them.”
Jason Mohammad: “ Halloween?”
Eggsy: “Great film!”
Jason: ”Seen them all?”
Eggsy:” Errrr... Yeah, Halloween 3 is one of my favourites.”
Jason:”It's a great film, the reason I ask Eggsy because it doesn't matter how much you raise every penny counts and one horror movie fan in the Llŷn Peninsula is as we speak in the middle of a fund raising movie marathon to give you a clue what its all about its a scary bloke called Jason... Lets go over live to our reporter Brandon, good morning Brandon.”
Brandon Williams:” Good morning Jason, as if one scary bloke called Jason wasn't enough to cope with, the man I am with now has to deal with twelve of them back to back! I'm with Arfon Jones at his home in Nefyn and he's just over two and a half hours into his movie marathon and the films he's watching, Well if the evil Jason character wasn't enough just think of today's date, Friday the 13th. Arfon is watching all twelve episodes of the Friday the 13th movie franchise back to back you might be able to hear it in the background. He started at nine this morning and is just in the middle of part two. Not everyone's cup of tea Arfon. Certainly not mine so how did you come up with this idea?”   
Arfon Jones:” It's an idea I have had for some time and then when I found out that Children in Need was on a Friday the 13th I thought this would be my excuse to do it. So that's where I got the idea.”
Brandon:” Its coming up to midday now, when will you finish this marathon?”
Arfon: ”I've worked it out at around three o'clock in the morning... there abouts.”
Brandon: ”I trust you have enough popcorn?
Brandon: ”Now you are a horror fan but you haven't seen all of these. Based on what you've seen so far is this going to be torture? Or are you actually enjoying it?”
Arfon: ”I'm sure I will start to feel the strain at around eleven o'clock tonight but so far so good.”
Brandon: "And your wife and daughter they are out all day to leave you alone to your marathon, do they think you are mad?”
Arfon: ”They have always thought I'm mad, I suppose this is just another example of the madness they have to endure.”
Brandon: ”Your daughter is only just thirteen so you will have to keep her out of the way of this one?
Arfon: ” She's had strict instructions to keep out of the room for the rest of the day!”
Brandon: ”And the burning question here is how much you have actually raised so far?
Arfon: ”Just under £250 at the moment but hopefully we will get a lot more at the end of the day!
Brandon: ”You might actually go for the 24 hour mark as well, you have a documentary to watch at the end.”
Arfon: ” Assuming I am still awake at that point I might just push the envelope and try and make 24 hours with it.
Brandon: ” Well, nearly £250 that is brilliant Arfon, really fantastic- well done. You've got a lot a long way to go, so I will let you get back to the film and we will hand back to the other slightly less sinister Jason in the studio.”
Jason Mohammad: ” Should just say as well, You know quite a lot about horror movies as well, there is a big difference between Friday the 13th and Halloween!”
Eggsy: ” Yes that was our producer's fault!”
Jason: “Never blame it on the producer!”
Eggsy: “Yeah, Halloween, completely different to Friday the 13th a massive Friday the 13th marathon going on there. There is a point when those films to tell him... HE'S GOING TO GO ON UNTIL THREE OCLOCK IN THE MORING!”
Jason: ”yeah!”
Eggsy: “That's unbelievable! I don't think I could do it- I mean I like a good horror film but with the Friday the 13th movies I think at one point he fights Freddy Kruger, I think that by the time Freddy Kruger comes in...”
Jason: ”Does he make an appearance?
Eggsy: “yeah, I think its 'Freddy vs, Jason' and its just like, come on! That's just... then there's one when Jason is in space! I think there is one set in Bradford or something? They were just running out of ideas quite badly at this point!”

© Arfon Jones 2015-2017. All images are copyrighted throughout the world.

Happy Birthday Roland Rat! (originally posted 12/02/2014)

A technical fault has arisen (not by my hand I might add- it's all Blogger's fault!) and as a result two posts seem to have dropped out of existence 'Happy Birthday Roland Rat!' posted back on the 12th of March 2014 and 'Arfon’sSponsored Friday the 13th Movie Marathon: CONCLUSION' posted on the 15th of November 2015 thankfully I have been able to retrieve them, but not in their original order- so I have to report them here! Playing merry hell with my links, stats and OCD.... anyway, here they are again!

Many happy returns Roland Rat (superstar) celebrating his 31st birthday today! As Ratfans around the world rejoice I thought I would devote this post to him! We all know the story of how “the only rat to join a sinking ship" managed to save TV-am’s ratings in 1983 and how he became an over (morning) sensation and an instant hit with children (myself included). We tuned in in our millions to follow his latest adventures touring the globe in his pink Ford Anglia with Kevin the Gerbil by his side while Errol the Hamster was left in charge of playing cartoons such as the Pac-Man the Animated Series back at the studio. I was a huge fan and drew several pictures of the gang aspiring to win my very own Ratbag some day! I never did. But I had/have all manner of other rat related items, Roland Rat wristwatch, mug, badge, school bag, lunch box, pencils, rubbers, annual and my very own plush Roland Rat! Received on Christmas 1984 he has been with me ever since, sitting on a shelf in my studio.

Taken on Christmas morning 1984.
Left to right me, my grandmother and brother
showing off our brand new Roland Rats!
This year I decided to restore and customise Roland in honour of his birthday. After a little T.L.C and a minor repairs (thank you  Mrs. Jones) I turned to another plush rat. Back in 2011 Posh Paws produced some rather nice, high quality plush Roland Rats and their talking Roland line was of specific interest to me, however it was the sound module inside that I was after! After 30 years my plush Roland Rat would finally have a voice! The original plush Roland had a section in the back that allowed children to convert their Roland into a puppet (can’t think why) this pocket was the ideal location for storing the sound module (Velcro added for easy changing of batteries). I carefully removed the module from the donor and inserted it into the recipient and I am happy to report that the operation was a complete success!  One talking, plush Roland Rat with 30 years worth of memories attached to it. Check out the video to see/hear the end result. Happy Birthday Roland!

© Arfon Jones 2014-2017. All images are copyrighted throughout the world.

Friday 20 January 2017

BBC Radio Cymru interview with Aled Hughes, 19/01/2017

A face for radio!
It's all go here in the studio at the moment not only am I adding the finishing touches to some projects but I am also renovating the studio, that's right the studio is regenerating! (but more on that and the big reveal at a later date). Never the less I had a guest visit this week, fellow former Botwnnogschool pupil and BBC Radio Cymru (Radio Wales) presenter Aled Hughes. Radio Cymru is the BBC's Welsh-language radio station that brodacasts throughout Wales and Aled's show offers a mix of music and conversation and it was nice having him drop in for a cuppa and a chat (I've been on his show in the past discussing Doctor Who). I gave him a mini tour of the studio, showed off my projects (even the top secret ones!) and showed off parts of my collection not currently in storage and discussed classic Nintendo games, Daleks, Tiki and all manner of things nostalgic. He reported his finding to his listeners and the interview can be found on iplayer. I thought however, that seeing as the interview had been conducted in my native tongue I thought I would translate it for all of you that don't speak welsh (not to mention those of you that want to be spared listening to my nervous, nasally voice) either way this is how it went.

Introduction:We now go to Nefyn (North Wales) to meet Arfon Jones. He loves collecting all sorts of things, and is a collector of things that appeal to Arfon Jones, his collection is amazing! When he opened the door to me it was like going back to my childhood.”

Aled: “Right I am at a house in Nefyn.”
(knocks door)
Aled: “Arfon, how are you?”
Arfon: “fine thank you, how are you?”
Aled: “Fine thank you. Arfon Jones lives here and right away I can say that this is a house with a difference because I have just walked into, what can only be compared to a set in Hawaii.
Arfon: “That's it, this is my Tiki Bar!”
Aled: “The Tiki Bar. There are small mugs featuring likeliness/faces that would belong to the islands of Hawaii and the Pacific Islands. Why collect these Arfon?”
Arfon: “I've always had an interest in them and so I collect them. They built up and I needed somewhere to store them and show them off.”

Aled: “I'm not sure how to describe you
Arfon: “Careful now!”
Aled: “A collector of anything that interests Arfon Jones?”
Arfon: “Yeah, that's it! And there is no limit”
Aled: “So there is no limit, and these Tiki mugs, I'm taking a closer look and they are worth seeing. I'm a little concerned about touching them because I don't want to break them! But you say one of these is from the 1950's?”
Arfon:”Yes this one is from the Bali Hai Restaurant in California. I have some from New York... they come from all over. But most of them from Hawaii.”
Aled: “And you have created this bamboo bar that contains them, and as I said its worth seeing, its like being on the set of an Elvis movie in the 1950's, or some tropical beach and that's what you were trying to recreate?”
Arfon: “Yes, I love all things Tiki and also Elvis Presley so I merged them together here.”
(8-bit game music starts in the other room)
Aled:Right, now you are taking me into another room, and right away.... Arfon, this takes me back to my childhood. This is the first Nintendo console?”
Arfon: “This is a Nintendo Classic Mini”.
Aled: “If we just turn it down for a moment. Now, this goes back to the late 1980's but you have only just got it?”
Arfon: “ Yes, the Nintendo Classic Mini lets me play all the old vintage games.”
Aled: “I will get you to do my job for a moment and get you to hold the microphone. Donkey Kong! This was a favourite. Right, I have to be honest, I haven't played this for years... (Donkey Kong music starts) what's the appeal Arfon? Why have something from your childhood? With all these new games out now, that allow you to do anything within them why go back to something that's already been?”
Arfon: “Its the memories that it brings back for me, the games I played I also like the simplicity. It has a charm about it and that's what I like.”
Aled: “But these aren't the only things you collect?”
Arfon: “This is just a small sample of what I have... I'll show you the rest now.”
Aled: “Blimey, I'll follow you.”
Aled: “Here we are, the Tardis doors. (laughs) We start off with a door which looks like the doors of the Tardis, carefully painted. You made this?”
Arfon: “Yes, I made that.”
Aled: “ Blimey, Here we are inside a cave full of treasures, I will attempt to described what I am seeing, we have glass cabinet full of items relating to Monster Munch, there are several Daleks... I don't know where to begin. Arfon. Where do you think we should start.”
Arfon: “ Well, I can start here with the Cyberman?”
Aled: “Cyberman from the Doctor Who TV series is this a special one?
Arfon: “This one comes from the 1980's and was the version that terrified me as a child.”
Aled: “Is it an original?”
Arfon: “It's from a mould taken from one used in the show I've then added the details to make it look like an original and also rigged up the lights inside.”
Aled: “Then inside the glass cabinet underneath, Monster Munch crisps once a firm fixture in lunch boxes throughout the 1980's and 90's there are all sorts of things here, key-rings, teddies... I didn't know all this existed.”
Arfon: “Same here, I'm still discovering new things that I didn't know that had been produced. I have books relating to the fan club, items produced for bikes and all the (electronic) games I even have a story tape of Monster Munch stories for children to listen to on long car trips.”
Aled: “Did you know that these things existed or did you have to research it first?”
Arfon: “There has been a little homework involved, but I do remember most of them as a child and how one had to collect the tokens from packs to get them.”
Aled: “Right, beside this (case) is something I do remember... (taps the side) the 'Cheeky Chics' machine that would stand outside a shop, you explain it.”
Arfon: “This machine was actually outside the Nefyn beach shop/cafe for many years. Kids would put their 10p in, the chicken would cluck and drop and egg that contained a gift inside.”
Aled: “And once again I find the memories flooding back to me. Do you know anything about its history?
Arfon: “The only thing I know is that Sam Moffatt produced these machines and that they originated from Rhyl. But apart from that I know very little about them. A shame because I would love to know more about him.”
Aled: “Well, if anyone out there knows anything about this inventor from Rhyl called Sam Moffatt that made arcade machines get in touch.”

Part 2

Aled: “Now then, this looks like a dangerous chair!”
Arfon: “Yes, this is my electric chair... This is my reading chair.”
Aled: (laughs) “you read in an electric chair?!”
Arfon: “Yes. And this is the chair I will have when I'm old and retired.”
Aled: “So you found this old chair in a shop, you've put leather straps on it to make it look like an old electric chair that would have been used in the 1950's that we would have seen in many horror films, my next question is why?”
Arfon: “I remember how Grandpa Munster from the Munsters TV series had one and I've always wanted one. So I got this chair, detailed it, popped in a bulb and instead of an electric shock I have a light to read from...”
Aled: “I shan't sit in it, just in case I don't get up again! You have shelves, and I noted as I walked in that it was like walking into an old video shop from back in the day, VHS's something that people might not remember now, certainly not young people but they would once have had videos on display and that's what you have recreated here.”
Arfon: “There you go, again I havememories of being able to go into shop and pick a film to watch and so that's what we do now. Friday night we come through, pick a movie and away you go.”
Aled: ”There are Daleks galore on this top shelf, there has to be between fifteen- twenty Daleks here each one stands about a foot tall and they cover the entire span of Doctor Who?”
Arfon” Yes, these are actually fairly new, but each design is different -reflecting how they have changed over the years. Some people collect models of Minis, showing off the different versions and colour schemes over the years- well I do that with Daleks.”
Aled: “The thing about this place is that I don't know where to turn next, its a room filled with all sorts of different things. I can see Morph here, you have badges on the wall I can see a badge from Hafoc (Welsh kids series from the 80's) I see all sorts of badges, I see a Slush Puppie one with the dog on it that I remember from my childhood.
Arfon: “This is my studio, its where I work from and most of my work has an element of nostalgia about it. I'm an artist/ illustrator I draw comics and books and also some sculptures, my own figures too.”
Aled: “So your inspiration is always around you. We will now move along into this part of the room, there is a rather eye catching coat here Arfon, what's the story here?”
Arfon: “This was Screaming LordSutch's original coat, Screaming Lord Sutch was the founder of the Monster Raving Loony Party, this is from 1983.”
Aled: “Where on Earth did you get that?”
Arfon: “Someone in America had it, and now thanks to eBay I now have it...”
Aled: “Are you serious?”
Arfon: “yes.”
Aled: “Speaking of eBay, there is a box here, in my hand... can I open it? And inside is a wrestling suit of a hero of any child growing up in the 1980's and early 90's one of Big Daddy's wrestling suits (leotards)”
Arfon: “there you go, the man himself.”
Aled: “Were did you get hold of this Arfon?”
Arfon: “eBay! (laugh). I remember meeting him in Caernarfon, seeing a photo of him brought it all back to me and when I saw that... I have one of his capes as well. I'm hoping to do more with it, show it off to people such as you and me that (fondly) remember him.”
Aled: “The white suit with big black letters spelling 'Big Daddy'
Arfon: “His wife would do that, sew them on and added the sequins.”
Aled: “Isn't it amazing to think that someone's hero during their childhood was in this! This is a collection that goes in all different directions Arfon, from Daleks to Big Daddy to arcade machines what is the end goal? What do you hope to do with all this stuff?”
Arfon: “ Id like to put together a small museum, I intend to do so with my own work- but my work reflects all this so I use them for that. I'm always learning something new and I like sharing my findings with people. Sometimes one finds something that the world seems to have completely forgotten about an I rediscover it.”
Aled: “What you do , seems to almost be disappearing now, because everything is on the internet, people take photos with their phones, they upload it and its gone.”
Arfon: “I look at myself as a curator, most people would probably prefer to forget these things but I prefer to keep them and learn from them- and show them off.”
Aled:” Your rekindled many a childhood memory for me and I thank you for doing so and sharing some of this with me, it was well worth seeing. Thanks for the chat.”
Arfon:”You are welcome, thank you.”

My sincere thanks to Aled Hughes and Cadï Mai
Be sure to tune in and catch Aled's show on BBC Radio Cymru
© Arfon Jones 2017. All images are copyrighted throughout the world.

Thursday 19 January 2017

New Comic! Slaughterhouse Farm #4

Following on from the successful Kickstarter campaign the fourth and final issue of Slaughterhouse Farm is out now! Just like the previous three issues this was written by AJ Ballard and Matt Warner, lettered by Nikki Foxrobot and illustrated by yours truly. After four years this grizzly tale of a trip to Snowdonia going horribly awry comes to a conclusion and as I mentioned before the campaign achieved its target goal after only a week proving how much of a hit this title has been with readers of the independent comic scene. So, don't delay order your copy today through their website or pick up an issue at one of Hellbound Media’s stalls positioned at numerous comic conventions across the country. Already read it? Let them know what you thought either on their Facebook page or Twitter or post a comment and I'll pass it on as I would love to know what you made of it.

© Arfon Jones 2017. All images are copyrighted throughout the world.

Wednesday 18 January 2017

The Tufty Club medal

This medal dates from the mid 1960's and features Tufty Fluffytail the road safety RoSPA (Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents) squirrel created by Mrs Elsie Mills MBE in 1953. Tufty featured in a series of stories aimed at delivering clear and simple messages about safety to the children of Britain and in 1961, the Tufty Club was founded, forming a nationwide network of local groups aimed at encouraging children to take care when crossing the road and at its peak there were 24,500 registered clubs across the country. By its second year around 60,000 children had joined the club and by the 1970s it was estimated the Tufty Club had reached 2 million members. It was also around this time that the RoSPA released a series of animated PSA's narrated by Bernard Cribbins that not only raised further awareness but also assured Tufty a place in the Britain's conciseness.

Other medals to check out:
Blue Peter Medals
The I-SPY medal

© Arfon Jones 2017. All images are copyrighted throughout the world.

The I-SPY medal

Time for some more medals...
The I-SPY spotters' guides were a series of books first created in 1949 and written for the children of the British Isles during 1950s and 1960s by an apparent Red Indian chief called Big Chief I-Spy. But Big Chief I-Spy was in fact one Mr. Charles Warrell (1889 -1995) a former head master who devised these books as a way of keeping children entertained and stimulated on long car journeys. It was a simple enough premise, children would spot the objects listed in the themed books, record the event (gaining points) and then once the book was completed, they would send the book to Big Chief I-SPY (witnessed by a parent or teacher) for a feather and entry to the order of merit. The children participating in the game were known as The I-SPY Tribe. The books were so well recieved that by 1953 the I-SPY Tribe had half a million members and a column in the Daily Mail where completed entries were mentioned by name. When Warrell retired in 1956, Arnold Cawthrow became the second Big Chief, and served in this role until 1978 when Big Chief, Robin Tucek stepped in for a short time before Professor David Bellamy carried the torch as Big Chief throught the 1980's (where I came in) until Michelin Travel Publications acquired and published the series itself from 1991 through 2002 before relaunching the series again in 2009. This particular medal dates from around 1961, and would have been acquired by a 'redskin' that would have decoded a special message in The Daily Mail with the aid of their membership code book.
© Arfon Jones 2017. All images are copyrighted throughout the world.

Saturday 7 January 2017

Blue Peter Medals

Here we are the first month of 2017, I have vowed to post more of my work on here and so I thought it was about time I shared 'my' medals with you, starting out with the Blue Peter medals.
For the benefit of anyone outside the United Kingdom it might be best I explain that the Blue Peter badge is an iconic award presented to viewers of the much-loved children’s television programme and British institution that is Blue Peter. Since 1963 the programme has been awarding these merit badges (a shield containing the Blue Peter ship logo designed by the late, great and not forgetting hero of mine Tony Hart) to anyone that took part in the programme be it winning a competition, having a letter read out or appearing as a guest on the programme. Aside from it being an accomplishment to be proud of, these badges also granted the recipient free admittance to many attractions across the British Isles for many years and this is when the corruption set in. Badges were being bought online and used as away to gain free admittance to these attractions, eventually resulting in the programme withdrawing them! Thankfully they managed to sort the problem out and restore this wonderful tradition but never the less I couldn’t help asking myself the question, “why sell them?” If I had one I would treasure it! Sadly despite several attempts I never actually achieved a Blue Peter Badge. (However my dear lady wife is a Blue Peter badge winner! achieving it for inventing no less! She is very proud of it and rightfully so! However I shan’t dwell on it as I said I NEVER got one! grumble!) So, I turned to eBay. I must stress that I am in not passing these off as my own awards, they are not for sale and I shall not be using them to gain free entry to any venues, I am simply celebrating this great institution and the accomplishments they represent. 
The Blue Peter Medal
An original 1970's badge customised and now hanging on a medal ribbon. You can be certain that this award was awarded for excellence at one time but to whom and for what we will never know.

The Blue Peter Medal: Green
The show's environmental award, Green badges are awarded for any correspondence regarding the environment, conservation or nature.
My other Blue Peter related posts can be found here:
© Arfon Jones 2017. All images are copyrighted throughout the world.


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