Lake District shop sparks outrage over golliwog dolls

A village shop in the Lake District has sparked outrage for selling golliwog dolls.

One shopper was so shocked to see the dolls displayed at Main Street Arts & Crafts in Hawkshead, Cumbria, that she went inside to confront the owner.

Brigitte Herrod, 52, of Cockermouth, claimed stores should not be allowed to stock the dolls and was aghast that the owner thought they were inoffensive.

Main Street Arts & Crafts in Hawkshead, Cumbria, has sparked outrage for selling golliwog dolls, which are displayed outside the shop

She told MailOnline: ‘I’m white, but I was offended because I think racism does still exist in the world as anyone would agree – and they are a symbol of that.

‘They’ve never been a positive image. Just because people may think they had them in their childhood, that doesn’t make them appropriate for now.

‘I’m actually ashamed as a northerner to see them being sold in the county that I’m from. Racism has to be stamped out.

‘This may be a very small part of the problem, but you have to pick away at the small things to eradicate the bigger problem. 

One shopper was so shocked to see the dolls displayed at Main Street Arts & Crafts that she went inside to confront the owner. The dolls are pictured above on Google Street View

‘I’m not a person who generally picks up on things – I’m a relatively quiet person – but I wrote a letter to my local MP and to the local newspaper.

‘My benchmark is if I had been walking with my son and some of his friends who are non-white, I would have been ashamed to have seen them displayed.

‘They were outside on a display. The Lake District attracts people from all over the world. Do we as a country and as an area want to be selling these?’

The shop owner told her Britain was too politically correct and it was fine because he called them ‘Gollies’ – but she said changing the name doesn’t change the meaning.

The owner of Main Street Arts & Crafts (pictured) was unavailable for comment, but a member of staff said she was surprised the dolls had caused offence and insisted they were not racist

The dolls go back to the ‘Golliwog’ character created by Florence Kate Upton that appeared in children’s books in the late 19th century and also featured in some Enid Blyton books.

Golliwogs: The once loved character now seen by many as racist 

The golliwog was created by Florence Kate Upton in 1895 in her book ‘The Adventures of Two Dutch Dolls and a Golliwog’, where it was described as ‘a horrid sight, the blackest gnome’.

After the author created the golliwog, it became a favourite for collectors and was popular in the UK as the mascot of Robertson’s jam.

But by the 1980s, it was increasingly seen as an offensive racist caricature of black people. 

Robertson’s dropped their golliwog mascot, called…

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