You'll all be sitting on the edge of your seats wondering if Ollie Beak survived......well, I went to the Horse Chestnut tree where I left him and he'd gone from the branch he was grasping last night, and after a good search, I assumed he had either recovered and flown off, or he had fallen off and been taken by a predator, a Fox or a Badger.
However, just as I was about to leave, I spotted him on the ground about 10-12 yards from where he was, those big eyes watching me like.....an Owl! After a couple of weak flights a few paces, I managed to catch him and put him in a box and drove off to the Rutland Falconry and Owl Centre. They assessed the new patient and as I already knew having held him, he was very thin and in need of food, despite looking plump in the photos yesterday.
He seemed very disinterested in grub and I wasn't too hopeful of a good outcome, but when I telephoned late this afternoon, they said he was feeding and looking a lot brighter, but he wasn't grasping with one of his talons, which probably explained why he was underweight and weak, being unable to catch prey. They're going to feed him up over the next couple of days, then have a look at the leg when he's stronger, so fingers crossed everyone!
Those of you under 50 will wonder who Ollie Beak is/was. Well, here he is with Fred Barker (no relation) the dog.
Every Tuesday and Friday tea time from 1963 to 1966, children throughout Britain settled down in front of the telly to watch the antics of Ollie and Fred on The Five O'clock Club, hosted by Muriel Young (below, with Pussycay Willum)
Ollie and Fred, with assistance from Muriel and Howard Williams (later replaced by Wally Whyton), would introduce star turns of the day, while Fanny and Johnny Craddock taught the kids Happy Cooking, Graham Dangerfield talked about pets, and Jimmy Handley (father of future Magpie presenter Jenny) made models.There were also guitar spots from show regular Bert Weedon. Ah, innocent days...but nostalgia's a thing of the past....