Some of the best children’s series to ever grace the British small screen came out in the 90s and early 00s, and decades later there is still very little rival to the legendary concepts of time-traveling fantasy Bernard’s Watch or The Queen Nose.
The Worst Witch was a must for any little girls wishing they had magic powers, and rivalled the wonder and enchantment Harry Potter brought for kids in later years.
TV has undergone something of an overhaul in recent times but many still look back on the classics of this era fondly.
There were also terrifying shows such as The Demon Headmaster and Goosebumps – and who could forget the iconic Art Attack?
But, where are the stars from our beloved childhood shows now? While some have sadly died, others have surprisingly gone on to Hollywood superstardom.
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Bernard’s Watch, the original series, was an ITV favorite that had every schoolboy and girl in the country wishing they could find a watch like young Bernard’s.
The timekeeper was also a time travel device, and children watched on in awe as the youngster found new and creative ways to make his life easier and more fun.
Bernard’s Watch’s first series aired from 1997-2001 (it was later revived with a new cast) and starred David Peachey as Bernard Beasley.
The star decided to leave his acting career behind soon after the show ended in 2001 but did pursue other TV projects for a while.
While David has enjoyed several appearances on various game shows and Pointless, he shifted careers to training in medicine in 2017.
Other notable characters on the show included Grandad, played by the late great actor Barry Jackson, who starred in the likes of Doctor Who and Silent Witness, and narrator Liza Goddard, who is also a renowned stage and TV actress.
Young Nicolette, who played Bernard’s nemesis on the show, was played by Rosie Day, who later found fame in another time-traveling drama, Outlander.
The Queen’s Nose
The Queen’s Nose launched stars from the likes of Coronation Street and Peaky Blinders during its three-season run, but was a wonderful piece of TV in its own right, with a fantastic concept.
The show’s namesake derived from the idea that if you held a magical 50p coin and rubbed the Queen’s nose on the front, it would grant you 10 wishes.
In the series, main star Victoria Shalet played the spoiled brat Harmony Parker, 10.
With best friend and sister Melody, played by Heather-Jay Jones, the two girls went through life taking incredible adventures – sometimes with disastrous results.
The BBC series was awarded the Royal Television Society Award for best drama in 1996 and was adapted from a book written by popular author Dick King-Smith.
The series then returned in 2000 with a revamped look, and focused on Melody in the lead role instead.
Victoria, who played Harmony, went on to carve out an impressive TV acting career, with roles on hit shows such as Midsomer Murders and Jonathan Creek.
She is now a humanistic psychotherapist and counsellor, while Heather later became a teacher.
Corrie star Paula Wilcox played the girls’ mum, while famous actor Donald Sumpter, who already had a well-established career, joined the cast of Birmingham gang favorite Peaky Blinders years later.
The Worst Witch
The spellbinding series about a school full of witches-in-training became an instant hit on ITV, and even spawned a college sequel called Weirdsister College.
Main actress Georgina Sherrington, who played the clumsy but loveable Mildred Hubble, became well-known for her role and even won a Young Artist Award for Best Performance in a TV Comedy Series.
But, after a brief foray into the more teenage sequel, Georgia decided to focus on her education and left acting behind.
Going on to attend the Ivy League American college Princeton University, Georgina later lived in LA for a few years.
She is now a consultant business coordinator for BBC comedy.
The most famous actress to come out of the series is Felicity Jones, who played the often-evil yet misunderstood villainous foil Ethel Hallow on the series.
Mildred and Ethel rarely got on, and their frosty relationship made for some of the show’s best storylines.
Now Felicity is better known for Hollywood turns in Star Wars prequel Rogue One and The Theory of everything alongside Eddie Redmayne.
Fans may know troublemaker Enid Nightshade actress Jessica Fox for her long-running role in Channel 4 soap Hollyoaks.
While Maud Moonshine actress Emma Brown chose not to continue down a path in the film and TV industry.
Despite that, she proved some of the cast were still in each other’s lives when she met up for an adorable reunion with Georgina recently.
Posing for a sweet selfie in a pub, the pair grinned as the former lead tweeted: “Reunions fun! 18 years later… Xx.”
The Demon Headmaster
Terrence Hardiman became one of the scariest men on TV when he took on the role of the Demon Headmaster in the title show.
The Demon Headmaster’s menacing presence was so riveting BBC executives decided to bring it back recently.
Actor Terrence, now 85, became synonymous with his chilling turn as the school principle, made even worse by the old-fashioned touches such as a military-style buttoned down signature outfit and 1960s-style glasses.
While Terrence continued on with his successful career in film and television, he still made sure to find time for a cameo role in the rebooted series.
Speaking to Radio Times, the star shared on the return: “I just make an appearance for a while, just a cameo. So it’s not about me. It’s the new lot, and that’s lovely.
“I’m not there for long. So I won’t frighten you for too long!” he reassured at the time.
A throwback to the 90s and early 00s wouldn’t be complete without ITV’s most creative and wonderful entertainment series Art Attack.
Neil Buchanan, now 65, entertained kids with his incredible art projects and creative games every day after school.
The presenter even won a BAFTA TV award in 1993, but not many will know that he started off his career with a desire to become a famous musician.
He formed the rock band Marseilles in Liverpool back in 1976, and even went on to become a supporting artist for smash hit group Whitesnake.
After departing Art Attack and his iconic red jumper, Neil carried on his new found passion by making and selling art. He also became the center of a rumour that claimed Neil was the now-infamous street artist Banksy. This was never proven.
The Chuckle Brothers
Chucklevision will also forever remain in the hearts of the nation, as loveable brothers Paul and Barry Elliot got into all manner of scrapes and hilarious comedy sketches throughout their run.
To Me To You and the Chucklevision theme tune are also truly iconic, but sadly Barry passed away in 2018 at the age of 74.
Paul continues his love of the art form with various stage shows and performances.
The 74 year old Yorkshire star is also doing his best to honor his late brother’s memory and even suggested plans for a show reboot.
And the brothers aren’t the only members of their family to have enjoyed TV success. As Paul and Barry’s great niece and nephew Pete and Sophie Sandiford are now fan favorites on Gogglebox.
Paul surprised fans when he shared a photo of himself with the sibling duo on his Twitter page and wrote: “This day 2018 with my great niece and nephew.”
Ant and Dec
No throwback TV piece would be complete without the mention of TV legends Ant and Dec.
Ant McPartlin and Declan Donnelly started out their careers as PJ and Duncan in Byker Grove. Dec joined the CBBC drama in 1989 while Ant joined a year later.
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The pair’s friendship began when their storylines collided on the series. Byker Grove’s producer Matthew Robinson once advised them to “stay together through any row you have, whatever it is, be together and you could be the future Morecambe and Wise”.
He later added: “I think they have proved that in many ways.”
Ant and Dec later turned their hand to music when they released Let’s Get Ready To Rumble as their on-screen characters PJ and Duncan.
After Byker Grove, the pair went on to host a number of children’s TV shows including Gimme 5, SMTV Live and CD:UK before breaking into other TV projects.
The now multi award-winning stars host Britain’s Got Talent, I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here and Ant and Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway.
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