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John Noakes' most memorable Blue Peter moments

From Nelson's Column to Lulu the elephant's conundrum, Noakes had a most memorable Blue Peter career

Published: Monday, 29th May 2017 at 12:20 pm

Beloved Blue Peter presenter John Noakes was often credited as the show’s very own action man, thanks in no small part to his many climbing escapades and his hilarious dealings with the programme’s four legged guests.


As news of his sad passing breaks, we’re taking a look back at some of his most memorable moments on the series.

What was your favourite? Share it with us in the comments below.

Climbing Nelson’s Column

In 1977 Noakes did the unthinkable, scaling Nelson’s Column in Trafalgar Square with no harness. It must have been a TV producer’s insurance nightmare, but it won him the death-defying respect of children and adults alike.

Climbing the mast of the HMS Ganges

If there’s one thing Noakes certainly didn’t seem to have it was a fear of heights. Ten years before he climbed Nelson’s Column, Noakes made his way up the mast of the Royal Navy’s training ship, the HMS Ganges, in 1967.

Fuelling the Flying Scotsman

When steam locomotives were due to be scrapped in the late 1960s Noakes hopped aboard the Flying Scotsman as it made a commemorative run from London's Victoria station to Brighton.

Stuck in the mud at the TT races

John and Shep made a trip to the Isle of Man to give time trial racing a go. It didn’t exactly go to plan, but the duo certainly made the most of it.

Lulu the elephant needs the loo

Never work with children or animals, they said. Noakes and his co-presenters certainly rose to the challenge, though. Even when an elephant decided the Blue Peter studio floor would make a great toilet.

Shep steals the show

Of course you can’t mention Noakes without a nod to his best Blue Peter pal, Shep. The dog often stole the show with his disobedient antics, and even had a song written about him.

Catch Shep and his Blue Peter friend, Petra, in action in this special episode which celebrated Petra’s 12 birthday.

Back in time to dig up the capsule


Noakes and his co-presenters Peter Purves and Valerie Singleton returned to the show in 2000, to dig up the time capsule they buried in 1971.


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