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Last Updated: Wednesday, 14 May, 2003, 18:59 GMT 19:59 UK
Cartoonists make record strip
Patrick Blower
Patrick Blower puts the finishing touches to his panel

Cartoonists claim they have made a new world record with a cartoon strip in Trafalgar Square depicting the history of London.

Sixteen of the UK's leading cartoon artists, including the world's fastest, have been working since Monday trying to create the world's largest ever cartoon strip.

On Thursday the finished strip was measured at 88.9 metres long, beating the previous record of 81 metres held by a New York strip.

The event is part of the London Comedy Festival from 15 - 25 May.

Those that joined the many cartoonists from the national press include Martin Rowson, London's 'cartoonist Laureate' and contributor to many publications, Matt Buck winner of Young Cartoonist Of the Year 2001 and John Byrne from children's channel Nickelodeon - the fastest cartoonist in the world.

Most cartoonists have a reputation for being paranoid and insecure but today it's been great
Patrick Blower, London Evening Standard cartoonist

John Byrne told BBC London he put the finishing touches to the whole cartoon.

"My job is to start the cartoon and finish the whole cartoon, because it's a comic strip ... it needs to have a sequence and start and finish at the same times."

A special hoarding was put up by the developers of Trafalgar Square to carry the cartoon, which is supported by the Mayor of London and sponsored by Lion Bar, Her Majesty's Prison Service and the Metropolitan Police.

The cartoon strip is two metres tall and each artist worked on a five-metre wide panel influenced by London's history.

London Evening Standard cartoonist Patrick Blower told BBC London: "Most cartoonists have a reputation for being paranoid and insecure but today it's been great.

"I've contributed on this one, the Frost Fair, with Chris who works on the Times, and we've all swapped ideas and it's been really good fun."

All money raised from sponsorship will go to the Great Ormond Street Hospital Children's' Charity.

BBC London's Brenda Emmanus
"For the last three days Britain's leading cartoonists have been plying their trade in Trafalgar Square."

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