Bob Godfrey passed away on Thursday 21st February at the age of 91. Throughout the country - and outside of it, in some cases - his fans are offering their condolences. Some of them saw Godfrey's adult shorts when they first premiered, while others (including myself) were first introduced to his work by seeing repeats of Henry's Cat as children.
Amid Amidi of Cartoon Brew has gathered together Twitter postings from the UK animation community, including a portrait of Godfrey by Joanna Quinn. In the comments section, Michael Sporn spoke from an American point of view:
Bob Godfrey is hardly more than a name in the United States, yet he was so obviously the heart of British animation. He made animation seem so accessible, so necessary to do, that he could only have inspired. Perhaps if we had gotten Roobarb in the US, things might have turned out better for us.
Keith Learner, a fellow animator at Biographic, has provided an article for the Guardian reminiscing about their time together in the independent group:
Bob was not only a brilliant cartoonist who pushed the boundaries, he was also a nice chap, and very funny. He was continually coming up with daft ideas. Bob wanted to make the audience laugh, and we always ended up laughing, too.
The Guardian also has a selection of videos relating to Bob Godfrey's life and work.
There are several obituaries available online; Jez Stewart of the BFI has provided one which goes into detail about Godfrey's shorts, which are often glossed over in favour of his TV work. Another came from Stan Hayward, who wrote many of Godfrey's productions, and here recounts a number of charming anecdotes from Bob Godfrey's career.
A final note: a key thing to remember about Godfrey is his time spent encouraging the making of animation, with the Do-It-Yourself Film Animation Show on television and his Do-It-Yourself Film Animation Book. The animation legacy of Bob Godfrey lies not just in his own work, but also in the work which he inspired.