Twenty five years of Comic Relief craft

jpco-13-2-13 Sue Wickstead Comic Relief badge maker (Pic by Jon Rigby)
jpco-13-2-13 Sue Wickstead Comic Relief badge maker (Pic by Jon Rigby)

A supply teacher has been selling home-made badges for Comic Relief for 25 years.

Sue Wickstead, 57, of Furnace Green, has made 13 different designs since the tradition began in 1989 when she worked with the Bewbush Playbus, a community project which closed down in 2003.

Sue said: “I still have the same badge making machine we used.

“When the Playbus folded I was left with it and it’s a bit of a memory of the bus.

“Over the years I’ve sold the badges through different schools or local businesses depending on who my contacts are at the time.

“One year the bank was involved, and the post office, and one year when my husband was ill, the hospital sold them.”

The mother-of-two designed badges which were in-keeping with the theme of Comic Relief’s merchandise.

She said: “Every year I make a different face. This year it’s glasses, all the T-shirts and things have glasses on them, so I’ve got a monster face with glasses.

“I know some ladies who have kept every badge I’ve made. I really like that they can be kept easily because they’re all limited edition.

“One year a lady told me she can never remember what year each badge is from so I’ve started putting the date on each one.

“I always put the person’s name on or a joke name if they prefer. I can personalise the badges however people want.”

Sue’s husband, Geoff Riddick, 58, helped fulfil orders despite going through cancer therapy for some years.

Sue said: “In 1993 it was the splat tomato theme. We copied the tomato from the Comic Relief red nose design, it took lots of colouring.

“Geoff had to colour them all in, they were red with green stems. Geoff was having chemotherapy at the time so we were not sure if he was sick of colouring in or just sick!”

Each badge will be sold for £1 and at least 75p from each will go to Comic Relief, with the rest going into the making costs.

“My target every year is 2,000 badges but I’ve never got there, 1,500 is my biggest.”

To order Sue’s badges call her on 01293 516206 or email