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Sunbeam Annual 1937 Frank Jennens.jpg

Frank Douglas Beaufoy Jennens was born on 25 April 1893 in St Pancras, London, the son of a clockmaker. He was a precociously talented artist, with paintings surviving he produced in his mid-teens, and he listed his occuaption as "artist" in the 1911 census, when he was still only 17.

He drew for the nursery comics of the Amalgamated Press in the 1920s and '30s, including "Little Snowdrop" (1927-50s) for Tiny Tots, and "Lily of the Valley" (1929), "Grandfather's Secret" (1930) and "The Miser's Secret" (1934) for Sunbeam. He also drew for The Bruin Boys Annuals for 1927 and 1929, painted the cover for the Sunbeam annuals for 1937 and 1939, and wrote a prose story called "The Scarlet Signal" to the Hulton Girls' Annual for 1927. He wrote and illustrated two children's books, Brown Mouse and Brown and White, in 1947, and illustrated a variety of books by others.

He was also a actor and theatre producer, something he gave up doing professionally in the mid-30s, although he continued to produce plays and perform, under the name Frank Douglas, for amateur dramatic societies in Baldock, Hertfordshire, and Broadstairs, Kent. He lived at various addresses in Broadstairs and Margate in the 30s, 40s and 50s, and died in Broadstairs on 22 September 1957.

References[]

  • Alan Clarke, Dictionary of British Comic Artists, Writers and Editors, The British Library, 1998, p. 84
  • Steve Holland, Frank Jennens, Bear Alley, 15 November 2009 (plus comments by various)
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