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Western Animation / Camberwick Green

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Here is a box, a musical box, wound up and ready to play. But this box can hide a secret inside. Can you guess what is in it today?

It's Mr. Troper, hello Mr. Troper. How's the website? Are you going to describe Camberwick Green and tropes related to it?

Camberwick Green is a British children's stop motion animated television series that ran from January to March 1966 on BBC1. It is the first series in the "Trumptonshire trilogy", and was followed by Trumpton in 1967 and Chigley in 1969. All three series were created and written by Gordon Murray, who based the settings on communities from his childhood (which he initially declined to name for fear they would be overrun with tourists when the series became successful), with music by Freddie Phillips and narration by Brian Cant.note 

The series is set in the fictional small, picturesque village of Camberwick Green, Trumptonshire. Inhabitants include Police Constable McGarry (Number 452), Mickey Murphy the baker and his twinnote  children Paddy and Mary, Mr Carraway the fishmonger, Peter Hazell the postman, Mrs Dingle the postmistress and her puppy, Packet, Dr Mopp (who makes house calls in his vintage car), Mr Crockett the car mechanic, Roger Varley the chimney sweep who travels around on a motorbike, Mr Thomas Tripp the milkman, and the village gossip, Mrs Honeyman, who is always seen carrying her baby, apart from when she hands him to another resident. Just outside the village lives Jonathan Bell, owner of a "modern mechanical farm", who has a friendly rivalry with Windy Miller, owner of a clanking old but nevertheless efficiently functional windmill and a firm believer in old fashioned farming methods. The village is also home to the military academy of Pippin Fort, run by Captain Snort and Sergeant-Major Grout, whose cadets are often seen on parade or acting as the village fire-fighters (a job taken over by the Trumpton Fire Brigade in Trumpton). Every episode features multiple musical numbers, as each character has a theme song and a "travelling song".

Camberwick Green steers clear of overt fantasy (apart from the musical box in the introduction) and is simply about ordinary people doing everyday things, with the villagers facing such low-key crises as a flour shortage, a swarm of bees, a water shortage, and rumours that an electrical substation will be built in the village and ruin the landscape. The troubles are invariably resolved happily by the end of the episode.

Camberwick Green provides examples of:

  • Babysitting Episode: Captain Snort's episode involves Private Meek babysitting Mrs. Honeyman's baby.
  • Barsetshire: The series is set in the fictional county of Trumptonshire.
  • British Brevity: All three series only lasted one season of 13 episodes each, bringing it to 39 episodes counted as one.
  • Good is Not Nice: PC McGarry may be dedicated to keeping Camberwick Green safe, but he's not very friendly.
    PC McGarry: You can't put a poster on the pillar box, it's against the law. Sorry.
  • Gossipy Hens: Mrs. Honeyman.
  • Retro Universe: The series seems to take place in a world that mixes contemporary technology with Victorian costume and social attitudes.
  • Running Gag:
    • The firefighters starting to unwind the hose, when they have been called out to carry out tasks such as replacing the crown on the statue of Queen Victoria.
    • One of the characters getting stuck holding Mrs. Honeyman's baby as she gossips a good while.
  • Shared Universe: With its sister shows Trumpton and Chigley.
  • Slice of Life: For the most part, the series is about ordinary people doing everyday things.
  • Stopped Clock: The famous Trumpton clock stops, when a careless painter leaves a pot of paint in the way of the moving figures. As they are blocked, the clock stops working.
  • You, Get Me Coffee: In Captain Snort's episode, Private Meek daydreams while on parade. Later, when the Privates are given jobs to do in the village, Meek is chosen last, and given the demeaning task of cleaning the army truck. But he does not even manage this much, as he ends up holding Mrs Honeyman's baby the whole time.