What was the philosophy of Ladybird 100 years ago?
In 1915, Wills & Hepworth Ltd first published ‘wholesome and healthy literature for children’ in an attempt to keep business flourishing throughout the war years. The main focus of the company however was on producing numerous large-scale catalogues for companies such as Austin and Rover Yardley.
It wasn’t until 1952 when Douglas Keen, future editorial director of Ladybird, produced his prototype book, A Book of Birds & Eggs, that the board of directors was persuaded to fully commit to the children’s publishing venture. Keen’s vision was for books for children that balanced education with entertainment, and words with beautiful, detailed pictures.