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By this time, I was onto my third set of development execs. Projects had come up and personnel had moved on.

Spot the Difference

Now however, Hetty was marching forward apace. The precinct show of Hetty Feather was taking shape. Hetty Feather had to appeal to both boys and girls. Her perception of life is limited.

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As in 'Dustbin Baby', we had no male protagonist, or wider world for Mrs. I introduced her male friend in the shape of David Haig to give balance — and to give her someone to talk to.

This is just what Hetty needed too. I gave them a gang, a school-master in the shape of Mr. Cranbourne — and the possibility of jinks and japes too.


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In the Foundling Hospital, the children lived by exceptionally strict rules. And in the show we had to adhere to them too. Boys and Girls live separately.


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The only way they can meet is in secret. And to do so, they have to sneak under the radar. Finding ways for them to see each other and the daring involved in doing so became very central to our concept. To get the rules right and the tone correct, I immersed myself. Being set in the Victorian era, I read and researched. I visited the Foundling Museum in London, on the site of the Foundling Hospital where the book is set. But the show had its contemporary restrictions too. We were working with young actors and the licensing laws for children on set must prevail.

In the book, we meet Hetty at a very young age. She returns to the Hospital at the age of five. In order for us to meet our exacting shooting schedule however, we knew early on, that having a lead actress, potentially in almost every scene, who is so young would be an impossibility. However, and rightly so, Jacqueline Wilson wanted us to be historically accurate in our timeline of events. Foundlings were brought back from their foster families to the Hospital at around the age of five or six.

Hetty Feather Fan Club - Games - CBBC - BBC

We needed to stick to this and yet at the same time, focus on the older Hetty too. The creative and practical decision was then made to use both — a young Hetty on her return and an older Hetty who then carries the show forward. And so the precinct show of Hetty Feather was born. With a gang-show feel, stories abound for our central characters — always driven by Hetty and drawing on inspiration from both the books and the era. It is a delight, I feel, for children to see period drama on TV. To them, a life without electricity and handheld technology, is akin to a fantasy scape.

Got any game ideas? Leave a comment below and we'll try to use as many of your ideas as we can.

Adapting 'Hetty Feather' for CBBC

Betrayal Hetty Feather Number of comments 61 Number of loves Birthday Hetty Feather Number of comments 80 Number of loves Comments To use comments you will need to have JavaScript enabled. Posted by Mini kitty chocolate cake 22 Nov 8: Report comment number 7. Posted by U 28 Oct A Hetty Feather Wordsearch!! Report comment number 6.

Posted by Dave 22 Jul I've got a puzzle game bbc hq. Report comment number 5. Posted by izzy 12 Jul Hetty feather is my favourite show on tv I'm looking forward to the new series. Report comment number 4.

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