Longest running daily cartoon by a single author
Frank Dickens
United Kingdom (Chipping Norton)
The longest running daily cartoon strip by a single author is "Bristow", by Frank Dickens (UK), which has been in continuous publication since first published in the Aberdeen Press and Journal on 18 September 1961. Currently, it appears in the Melbourne Herald and in the Sydney Morning Herald. Bristow is a buying clerk (18th in line for Chief Buyer!) with the monolithic Chester-Perry organisation. He is unmarried, of uncertain age, and an ineffectual rebel. Although he dislikes his job intensely he would fight to keep it. Hoping the world is listening, he gives his opinions on life to anyone around, and if no one is around, is quite happy talking to himself. As far as work goes he is an inveterate slacker who professes to hate red tape, but is only too keen to use it whenever it suits him. He lives in a bed sit in East Winchley from where he travels to work on the 8:15 commuter special. The strip was originally conceived as an instruction on motor car maintenance. Dickens hoped to explain, by way of a strip cartoon, the intricacies of the combustion engine and the maintenance and upkeep of a motor car. A few weeks before the first strip started, Dickens had seen a cartoon drawn by cartoonist Michael ffolkes, real name Michael Davies (1925–1988), in which the name Bristow was featured, and being a rather nondescript name Dickens attached it to the insignificant driver. Explaining away a broken half shaft in the limited space of a cartoon frame proved rather more difficult than Dickens had anticipated, and while he tried to work out how to present this successfully, decided to delay the action and keep him in the office until the solution presented itself. Information taken from www.frankdickens.com and www.guter/org/origins