The Animals of Farthing Wood (TV series)

The Animals of Farthing Wood is a British-French animated series commissioned by the European Broadcasting Union between 1992 and 1995, and is based on the series of books written by English author Colin Dann.[1] It was produced by Telemagination, based in London, and La Fabrique, based in Montpellier in France, but also aired in other European countries. The first countries to air the series were Norway, Germany, The Netherlands, Belgium, Ireland, Italy and the United Kingdom, in January 1993.

The Animals of Farthing Wood
Animals of farthing.jpg
Created byColin Dann (original books)
Written bySue Butterworth
Alan Case
Valerie Georgeson
Gordon Harrison
Elphin Llyod-Jones
Jenny McDade
Steve Walker
Directed byPhilippe LeClerc
Elphin Llyod-Jones
Voices ofJeremy Barrett
Rupert Farley
Jon Glover
Sally Grace
Stacy Jefferson
Pamela Keevilkral
Ron Moody
Theme music composerDennis Cooper
Composer(s)Detlev Kühne
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original language(s)English
No. of series3
No. of episodes39 (list of episodes)
Executive producer(s)Theresa Plummer-Andrews (for BBC)
Enrico Platter (for WDR, Series 1–2)
Siegmund Grewenig (for WDR, Series 3)
Producer(s)John M. Mills
Running time25 minutes
Production company(s)Telemagination
La Fabrique
DistributorEuropean Broadcasting Union
Original release6 January 1993 (1993-01-06) –
21 December 1995 (1995-12-21)

On 3 October 2016, Network Distributing released all three series of The Animals of Farthing Wood onto a DVD Box Set. This is the first time all episodes have been released in English as an official and complete set.[2]


The television series followed the basic plots of the series of books, although certain elements were changed.

The first season followed the animals of Farthing Wood, who were forced to flee their homes after humans started destroying the wood to build suburban tract houses. Led by Fox, and guided by Toad, the animals left Farthing Wood on a journey to White Deer Park, a nature reserve where they would be protected. The second and third season followed the relationships between the Farthing Wood animals, the White Deer Park animals and outsiders, particularly a blue fox named Scarface, his mate Lady Blue and son Ranger.

The episodes were made in both the UK and France. Because of this, in Series 1 th e motorway's carriageways have traffic driving on the right hand carriageway of the motorway. However, they are briefly seen in Series 3 driving on the left hand side.

When the series aired in the US, 2 versions were shown, the UK version, and a new version released on home video with some of the voices changed, for example, the role of Fox was replaced by Ralph Macchio, there were added songs as well.[3]


Series overviewEdit

Series / Season Episodes UK Airdate (Approx)
1 13 6 January 1993 – 31 March 1993
2 13 7 January 1994 – 30 March 1994
3 13 28 September 1995 – 21 December 1995



  • Jeremy Barrett as Mr. Rabbit, Scarface, Mole, Bold, Friendly, Hollow, Mossy, Hurkel, Measley, Mr. Shrew, and others.
  • Rupert Farley as Fox, Mr. Hare, Mr. Pheasant, Plucky, Trey, Fido, Brat and others.
  • Jon Glover as Scarface, Ranger, The Warden, and others.
  • Sally Grace as Owl, Weasel, Charmer, and others.
  • Stacy Jefferson as Vixen, Adder, Kestrel, Mrs. Hare, Mrs. Rabbit, Shadow, and others.
  • Pamela Keevilkral as Dash, Cleo, Speedy, Whisper, Mrs. Squirrel, Mrs. Hedgehog, and others.
  • Ron Moody as Badger, Toad, Whistler, Bully, Spike, Rollo, Mr. Hedgehog, Mr. Vole, Mr. Mouse, The Great White Stag, and others.
  • Maria Warburg as Whisper (Audiobook only)
  • Peter Woodthorpe as Whistler, Toad and The Great White Stag (Audiobook only)
  • Timothy Bateson as Measley, Fox, Trey and others (Audiobook only)
  • Fiona Reid as Weasel and Adder (US dub only)

Fox, the leader of the Animals of Farthing Wood, was voiced by Rupert Farley in the UK and Ireland version but in the US version he was played by Ralph Macchio.

In France, Germany, Italy, Norway and Sweden the cast included the following:

Character German Italian French Swedish Norwegian Brazilian Portuguese Japanese
Fox Stephan Schwartz Michele Gammino Bernard Tiphaine Totte Wallin Hallvard Lydvo Élcio Sodré Yoshitada Otsuka
Vixen Uschi Wolff Pinella Dragani Monica Forsberg Hildegun Riise Vanessa Alves Tomiko Suzuki
Badger Franz-Josef Steffens Bruno Alessandro Marc de Georgi Svante Thuresson Harald Mæle Eudes Carvalho Koichi Kitamura
Mole Ulli Philipp Fabrizio Vidale Serge Lhorca Michael B Tretow Åsleik Engmark Neuza Azevedo Tahara Aruno
Owl Tilly Lauenstein Alina Moradei Maaïké Jansen Liv Bernhoft Osa Maximira Figueiredo Chikako Akimoto
Weasel Marion Martinzen Laurence Badie Meta Roos Hildegun Riise Marcelo Campos Shinobu Adachi
Whistler Donald Arthur Fabrizio Manfredi Torgny Söderberg S 1&2: Harald Mæle S3: Hallvard Lydvo
Toad Manfred Lehmann Raoul Delfosse Bo Maniette Trond Brænne Francisco Bretas Takeshi Watanabe
Adder Karin Kernke Évelyne Grandjean Christel Körner Unn Vibeke Hol Neuza Azevedo Yoshida Riko
Kestrel Andrea Wildner Rossella Acerbo/Federica De Bortoli Mireille Audibert Birgitta Fernström Unn Vibeke Hol Misa Watanabe
Mr. Hare Horst Sachtleben Ulf Peder Johansson Hallvard Lydvo
Mr. Vole Walter von Hauff Trond Brænne
Mr. Shrew Walter von Hauff Myrra Malmberg
Mr. Fieldmouse Walter von Hauff Hasse Andersson
Mrs. Fieldmouse Isa Di Marzio Birgitta Fernström
Mr. Hedgehog Martin Semmelrogge Vittorio Stagni Harald Mæle
Mr. Rabbit Michael Habeck Hasse Andersson Åsleik Engmark
Baby Rabbit Sabine Bohlmann Maria Fransson
Mr. Pheasant Thomas Reiner Anders Öjebo Åsleik Engmark
Mrs. Pheasant Andrea Wildner Monica Forsberg Unn Vibeke Hol
Mr. Squirrel Walter von Hauff Kerstin Andeby
Mrs. Squirrel Pamela Keevil Kral Myrra Malmberg
Mr. Newt Oliver Stritzel
Mrs. Newt Karin Kernke
Baby Newt Sabine Bohlmann
Scarface Benno Hoffmann Bertil Engh Åsleik Engmark Fábio Tomazine
Lady Blue Elisabeth Endriss Monica Forsberg Liv Bernhoft Osa Zaíra Zordan
Ranger Oliver Stritzel Bertil Engh S2: Harald Mæle S3: Ivar Nørve
Bounder Oliver Stritzel
Bully Otto Sander Ivar Nørve
Brat Walter von Hauff
Great White Stag Roland Hemmo Ulf Peder Johansson Trond Brænne
Bold Udo Wachtveitl Anders Öjebo Åsleik Engmark Yūko Minaguchi
Charmer Anja Jaenicke Stella Musy Mia Kihl Chisa Yokoyama
Friendly Axel Malzacher Trond Brænne
Dreamer Simone Weyrich
Plucky Pierre Peters Arnolds Ulf Källvik Henrik Mestad
Speedy Kathrin Ackermann Georgia Lepore Liza Öhman Unn Vibeke Hol
Whisper Karin Kernke S2: Hildegun Riise S3: Unn Vibeke Hol
Measly Pierre Franckh Bertil Engh Trond Brænne
Sinuous Franz Rudnick Hallvard Lydvo
Dash Madeleine Stolze
Mossy Ulli Philipp Michael B Tretow Henrik Mestad
Trey Jan Gebauer
Laird Peter Fricke
Spike Martin Semmelrogge Henrik Mestad
Fido Alexander Brem Henrik Mestad
Cleo Sabine Bohlmann
Warden's Cat Arne Elsholtz Christel Körner Trond Brænne
Rollo Michael Gahr Peter Wannberg Trond Brænne
Donkey Wichart von Roell Hallvard Lydvo
Boar Stefan Orlac
Crow Tommi Piper Harald Mæle
Shadow Angelika Bender Liv Bernhoft Osa
Hurkel Helmut Ruge Ivar Nørve
Bruno Benno Hoffmann
Large rat Helmut Krauss
Chief wild cat Ingeborg Lapsien
Tom, the cat Arne Elsholtz
Bats Kathrin Ackermann
Other crow Tommi Piper Ivar Nørve
Young crows Tommi Piper
Shrike Benno Hoffmann
Piglet Andrea L'Arronge

UK VHS/DVD ReleasesEdit

Buzz BooksEdit

These are based upon the characters in the television series. Some parts had happened differently.

  • "Farewell to the Wood" (based upon The Wood in Danger)
  • "The Adventure Begins" (based upon The Journey Begins)
  • "Fire" (based upon Through the Fire and Water)
  • "A New Friend" (based upon Friend in Need)
  • "Heroes" (based upon Whistler's Quarry)
  • "The Silent Field" (based upon A Deathly Calm)
  • "The Storm Shelter" (based upon Pandemonium)
  • "Journey's End" (based upon So Near and Yet So Far)
  • "" (based upon 1)
  • "" (based upon 2)
  • "" (based upon 4)
  • "" (based upon 5)
  • "" (based upon 7)
  • "" (based upon 8)
  • "" (based upon 13, and 15)
  • "" (based upon 18)
  • "" (based upon 20)
  • "" (based upon 22)
  • "" (based upon 27, and 28)
  • "" (based upon 31, and 34)
  • "" (based upon 38)
  • "" (based upon 40)
  • "" (based upon 44, and 48)
  • "Mrs Rabbit’s Bad Day" (based upon Mrs Rabbit Gets Lost, Slow Down Mrs Rabbit, and Be Careful Don’t Spilled)
  • "" (based upon 61)
  • "" (based upon 78)
  • "Weasel Gets The Sniffles" (based upon Long And Right', and Sad Weasel And Mrs Rabbit')
  • "" (based upon 96)
  • "" (based upon 100)
  • "A New Home" (based upon A Hero's Welcome, Winter, and Survival)
  • "Badger in Danger" (based upon Winter, and Survival)
  • "Unwelcome Visitors" (based upon New Enemies)
  • "Spring Awakening" (based upon Home is Where the Heart Is)
  • "Bold" (based upon The Feud Begins)
  • "Tummy Ache" (based upon Bold And Badger's Sweet Tooth)
  • "Trouble in the Park" (based upon Like Father, Like Son, Narrow Escapes, and Shadows)
  • "Showdown" (based upon Blood is Thicker Than Water)
  • "Peace" (based upon Reconciliation)
  • "Strangers in the Park" (based upon Comings and Goings)
  • "The Weasels' Adventure" (based upon The Missing Fox's Friend, Tiffs and Tempers, and The Long Tailed Visitor)
  • "To the Rescue" (based upon The Missing Fox's Friend, Adventure for the Birds, and Scared by Silly Snakes)
  • "The Rat Spy" (based upon The Long Tailed Visitor and The Mole Game)
  • "What is Buzz Book 21 Called?" (based upon The Worst Kind of Hurricane, Homeward Bound, and Bully, Bully, Bully)

Broadcasts and releasesEdit

In France the programme is known as Les Animaux du Bois de Quat'sous ("Quat'sous" being a literal translation for "farthing"). It first aired on France 2 in 1994, and in Switzerland at the same time on TSR. It also aired in the following countries:

It also aired in Brazil (TV Cultura, Os animais do bosque dos vinténs), featuring Élcio Sodré (Fox), Vanessa Alves (Vixen), Maximira Figueiredo (Owl), Francisco Bretas (Toad), Neuza Azevedo (Mole and Adder), Eudes Carvalho (Badger), Zaíra Zordan (Lady Blue) and Fábio Tomazine (Scarface). 26 episodes were also broadcast in Japan by Shizuoka Asahi Television. The series was broadcast by the ABC in Australia where it also became popular.

Adventures of FoxEdit

Appears last on the Greatest BBC Children's Video ever along with Fireman Sam, Pingu, Spider, William's Wish Wellingtons, Clangers, Nursery Rhyme Time, Noddy's Toyland Adventures, Funnybones, Hairy Jeremy and The Little Polar Bear. It has clips from the following episodes:

  • Beginning and end of The Wood in Danger (Loggers attack the Wood, Owl informed about the pond filled in, Assembly)
  • Beginning of The Journey Begins (Leaving the Wood)
  • End of Snare for the Unwary (Kestrel spots river, Animals cross River, Fox and Badger hit by driftwood)
  • Beginning of Who Shall Wear the Crown? (Badger found in reeds, Kestrel loses Fox, Animals move on)
  • Some beginning and Middle of New Friends, Old Enemies (Fox arrives at Town, Fox put onto truck, Fox meets Vixen)
  • Some parts of Friend in Need (parts with Hunting, Meeting Big Owl, Searching, Fox Hunt and the ending)


Apart from books and videos, there was also a Farthing Wood CD and in the mid-1990s, a 130-part magazine for children entitled "Farthing Wood Friends" was also developed. Audio tapes recapping the first two seasons were released, with the story being told to young fox cubs by several of the cast who would also debate the events and mimic some of the other characters.

There are also three TV tie-in books available, one to accompany each of the TV series:

The Animals of Farthing Wood links with Series 1.
The Further Adventures of The Animals of Farthing Wood links with Series 2.
The Animals of Farthing Wood – Spirit of Survival links with Series 3.

These follow the same storylines, but are presented in a comic-strip style.

Watered-down versions of episode storylines were also featured as a running story in 'Farthing Wood Friends', illustrated using photographic stills from the series. Between magazine coverages of second and third series episodes, abridgements of Colin Dann's original stories were used to fill the void, entitled 'Tales From Farthing Wood'. Another book adaptation of the running story employed for series one was released by Ted Smart Publishing, with illustrations by Stuart Trotter.

Episode stories were also abridged for Buzz Books, Reed Children's Books' range of storybooks based on popular children's characters. The Farthing Wood stories in this range started with five books to begin with, then steadily expanded to cover the remainder of series one and series two. Illustrations were produced by William Heinemann in favour of using stills from the series.

Hornby, known mainly for its model railways, produced collectable figurines of the series ensemble, released in batches or 'presentation packs'. They were as follows:

1st Series: Fox, Badger, Mole, Weasel, Toad & Owl

2nd Series: White Stag, Scarface, Kestrel, Adder, Whistler & Rabbit

3rd Series: Bully, Vixen, Plucky, Fido, Cleo, Rollo, Measly, Speedy, Hollow, Hurkel, Dash & Sinuous

The characters were also released in twin packs and later in the run, Hornby produced compatible play-scenes. Early in the run, almost simultaneous with the first series being shown in the UK, they released plush toys of Badger, Fox and Mole. Although these were rare finds in toyshops, they were the subject of a running promotion in 'Farthing Wood Friends', enabling readers to win them.

Despite the show being very popular, the series did not see any form of DVD release until 2009, with the episodes on VHS hard to find up to then (in particular the last two collections). However, there had been an increase in unofficial DVDs available on eBay.[citation needed]

Series 1 came out in France in February 2009.[5]

Series 1 was released in Germany on 25 September 2009,[6] Series 2 was released in Germany on 27 May 2011,[7] and Series 3 was released in Germany on 24 February 2012.[8] The German DVD releases offer both English and German audio options.

On 3 October 2016, Network released all three series of The Animals of Farthing Wood onto a DVD Box Set. This is the first time all episodes have been released in English as an official & complete set. ( Brownee Bear Productions also own the license for this shows. The license was done thru agreements of the creators.

Differences between the books and the seriesEdit

There are a number of differences between the books and the television series, most notably the changing of a number of characters from male to female. This included Adder, Weasel, Owl and Kestrel, who retained the markings of a male kestrel. Owl had also been known as Tawny Owl in the books. In addition to this, the books featured a family of lizards who became the newts of the television series. New characters like the Shrews, Hurkel and Measley were introduced. Plucky is also changed from being Bold's grandson to his son. There are females that are males now. They are Sinuous, The Big Owl and Hollow. The Fieldmice are now known as the Mice. Holly is now known as Hollow.

Minor plot changes also exist, such as the order of the pheasant's deaths, the deaths of Badger and Moley, and the motives of certain characters. Scarface has a different reason for attacking the Farthing Animals and Bold leaves the Park after an argument with his father, rather than to find a mate as he does in the books. In contrast to Badger's death, Toad and Mossy survive the television series, the former befriending Spike, the rat who killed Mossy and was killed himself by Adder in the books. The cause of Sinuous' death was also changed. Of the rats, Brat originally returned to the sewers instead of being killed by Sinuous, while Bully had his tail bitten off by Cleo rather than being killed by Vixen. Also in the end of the book Season 3 was based on, Battle for the Park, Dash is the one who tells the others that White Deer Park has merged with another reserve giving more space for the animals to live, in Season 3, it's instead Trey who tells them this.

Scarface and his tribe were rival red foxes in the books. His mate was not also named in the books and her personality is not so developed. Too many red foxes would have been confusing for viewers, so the animators made Scarface and his family distinguishable by making them "blue foxes" (more commonly referred to as "silver foxes", a melanistic color morph of the red fox.). Speedy was also unnamed. There are also one-episode characters that didn't appear in the books such as The Red Squirrels, Stoat and Scragg the Rat who is killed in his one-time appearance.

The only main plotline that is left out of the series is the plot of The Siege of White Deer Park, in which the character known as 'The Beast' (a big wild cat) attacks the park, causing further trouble for the animals' survival. The storyline of this book is presumably removed because of too much horror and peril themes and the sub-plots that occur in the book (such as Badger mistaking Mossy for Mole) are broken down into small plot changes in the other book storylines for the series.


  • Based on the Books by: Colin Dann
  • Written by: Alan Case, Steve Walker, Sue Butterworth, Jenny McDade, Gordon Harrison, Elphin Lloyd-Jones, Valerie Georgeson
  • Adapted by: Steve Walker
  • Music Composed by: Detlev Kühne
  • Theme Music Composed and Arranged by: Dennis Cooper
  • Recorded by: WDR Orchestra, KRO Cologne
  • Directors: Elphin Lloyd-Jones, Philippe LeClerc
  • Assistant Director: Emile Bourget
  • Animation Director: Alan Simpson
  • Character Designs: Elphin Lloyd-Jones, Philippe LeClerc, Patrick Michel
  • Storyboard: Gordon Harrison, Jean Francois Laguionie, Claude Aufrere
  • Backgrounds: Ian Henderson, Richard Mithonard, Valerie Carmona, Thomas O'Loughlin (O'Laughlin), Anton Loeb, Mike Wall, Graham Howells, Dean Gordon, Alan Bodner, John Millington, Margaret Riley, Owen Rhou, M.J. Booth, Jimmy Lawlor, Eric Semones, Donald Watson, Philip Phillipson, Andrew Richard Phillipson,
  • Layouts: Sue Butterworth, Gordon Harrison, Ted Pettengell, Trevor Ricketts, Patrick Michel, Gerard Kiszel, Christian Ragoust
  • Animation: Thomas Barker, Monica Brutton, Alison de Vere, Andy Eraclerus, Christopher Evans, Joan Freestone, Tony Guy, Peter Hale, Arthur Humberstone, Simon Loxton, Fraser MacLean, Charlie MacRae, Janet Nunn, John Perkins, Mike Pocock, Paul Stone, Rosemary Welch, José Xavier
  • Key Animators: Chris Clarke, Gary Hender, Nathalie Biston, Marian Brooks, Valerie Pouyanne, Jean Francois Galataud, Monica Moinar, Lea Movement
  • Assistant Animators: Philippe Archer, Jean-Yves Regnault, Laurence Commeyras, Isabelle Pouyanne, Didier Chenu, Catherine Halvic, Muriel Chevallier, Sega Favre, Sylvia Bottiau, Sim Lignon
  • Trace & Paint: Audrey Hammond, Pat Arthy, Pete Arthy, Lynda Marmont, Chris Jones, Ross Marks, Sharon Martins, Becky New, Vivienne Redmond, Jenni Steers, Dominique Lenoble, Clarie Dame, Nancy Rey, Frederic Jaubert, Suzy Kopp, Sophie Beltran, Brigitte Boursereau, Rodney Crofton, Carole Dorange, Nathalie Finiels, Cathy Gentric, Isabelle Landmann, Claire Larnelle, Cathy Rigall, Maria Stockman, Mireille Valentin, Wendi Ellis, Jose Amoros-Sanz,
  • Checking: Ann Kotch, Janine Arthy, Isabelle Perrichon, Andrew Ryder
  • Rostrum Camera: Chris Williams, Anthony Hagen, Jacques Armand, Yves Francon, Jean Paul Rossard
  • Software: Animo Cambridge Animation Systems
  • Production Supervisor: Jean-Paul Gaspari
  • Production Coordinator: Dominique Edmond-Marlette
  • Production Accountants: Helmut Breuer, Philippe Marteaux
  • Editing: Theresa Plummer-Andrews, John Daniels, Ken Morgan, Tom Oliver
  • Special Effects: Stephan Hartl, Malcolm Beattie
  • Picture Editor: Fiona Keene
  • Videotape Services: Video Time
  • Line Test Camera: Plaza Synchron
  • Dialogue Editor: John Daniels, Hilary Daniels, Hans-Peter Kaufman
  • Track Readers: Otto Sander, Ulli Philipp, Tilly Lauenstein, Martin Semmelrogge, Helmut Ruge, Wichart V. Roell, Karin Kernke, Franz-Josef Steffens, Stephan Schwartz, Marion Martinzen, Manfred Lehmann, Peter Fricke, Benno Hoffmann, Thomas Reiner, Horst Sachtleben, Michael Habeck, Tommy Piper, Arne Elsholtz, Ingeborg Lapsien, Stefan Orlac
  • Associate Producer: Wolfgang Wegmann
  • Producer: John M. Mills
  • Production: Telemagination (London), Praxinos (Montpeller)
  • EBU Coordinator: Marie-Claire Vionnet
  • Executive Producers: Siegmund Grewenig, Theresa Plummer-Andrews
  • Film Laboratories: European Cineman, Television Year
  • Copyright 1992, 1993 and 1995 European Broadcasting Union


  1. ^ Leapman, Michael (12 December 1992). "BBC children's chief defends use of cartoons". Independent. Retrieved 9 January 2011.
  2. ^ "Animals of Farthing Wood (The): The Complete Series". Retrieved 28 June 2017.
  3. ^ FieldmasterFox (25 September 2016), Journey Home The Animal of Fathing Wood Starring Ralph Macchio, retrieved 16 March 2018
  4. ^ "Sundays..." Retrieved 28 June 2017.
  5. ^ "Les animaux du bois de quat'sous: Philippe Leclerc: DVD & Blu-ray". Retrieved 6 July 2012.
  6. ^ "Als die Tiere den Wald verließen – Staffel 1 [2 DVDs]: Detlev Kühne, Philippe Leclerc, Elphin Lloyd-Jones: Filme & TV". 29 March 2011. Retrieved 6 July 2012.
  7. ^ "Als die Tiere den Wald verließen – Staffel 2 [2 DVDs]: Philippe Leclerc, Elphin Lloyd-Jones: Filme & TV". Retrieved 6 July 2012.
  8. ^ "Als die Tiere den Wald verließen – Staffel 3 [2 DVDs]: Philippe Leclerc, Elphin Lloyd-Jones: Filme & TV". Retrieved 6 July 2012.

External linksEdit