What is extraordinary is why the Wombles, who practically vanished after their few years of fame in books and on TV between the late 1960s and first half of the 1970s, should suddenly find themselves 40 years later in the news spotlight with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson? And especially at this very delicate, precarious time.

The answer is simply because the Wombles have all of a sudden become a highly relevant cause. Although based on stories for children, they were environmentalists way ahead of their time, aiming to help the planet by collecting and recycling rubbish in creative ways. This concern now fits in very well with today's mood, hence their remarkable comeback.

Perhaps PM Johnson’s appearance alongside Orinoco Womble in London this month was a clever tactical "bail out" ploy by him to divert attention away from the immense pressures he faces and to show his humorous showmanship side. This is something he likes to do, and generally does well. But more importantly, the event was to launch the Keep Britain Tidy organisation’s Great British Spring Clean programme and to call for volunteers.

Last year more than 500,000 people pitched in, and this year, aided by Johnson and Orinoco, it is hoped to attract 1 million recruits to tackle the rubbish accumulated around streets, parks, beaches and countryside. The lovable Wombles, from Wimbledon Common, London, and created by author Elizabeth Beresford (1926-2010) are on the comeback trail to inspire a new generation to learn and take part in clearing up the environment and recycling.

To all those in politics here in Hungary, should there be a need to overcome a future political crisis or if there is too much litter on the streets of Budapest, Lake Balaton and at the southern border, my advice to PM Orbán is call Boris. He will send in the recruits.

Finally, the Wombles’ motto is "Make Good Use of Bad Rubbish". Spin this for light Brexit relief everyone!


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