Blimey! Remember the telly’s favourite spellbinding trainee, Wizadora? The one who couldn’t quite get her enchantments spot on? Well, it’s been a whopping 30 years since Wendy Van Der Plank, the star of the ’90s kids hit, first graced our screens. And she hasn’t changed a bit!
From ’93 to ’98, every kiddo tuned in to watch Wizadora fumble about, often cheekily chatting directly to us, asking for a wee bit of help with her magical mishaps. Who could forget her quirky crew: the adorable sock-like trio, Top/Sticky/Bottom, and the ever-jolly scarecrow, Tatty Bogle?
It is little known that before Wendy got the gig, Fawlty Towers’ legend Connie Booth played Wizadora in the pilot. But as luck would have it, Meridian Broadcasting sprinkled some magic in ’92, and Wendy nabbed the titular role. Prior to that, she’d been tickling our funny bones on the Beeb’s ‘Spin-Off’ and then as ‘Hilly’ on ITV’s ‘Forever Green’.
Though Wendy hung up her wand in ’96, she hasn’t vanished! Spotted on regional theatre stages, she now works with the Boiling Kettle Theatre Company, which are based in Devon.
Wendy did not do any more TV work after Wizadora and previously only starred in a handful on TV shows. It appears that her love of the theatre makes her content in life and not a life of glamour that comes from being on the screen.
Looking at her recent pictures online, I feel that she really did know a bit of magic because she looks almost exactly the same as she did 30 years ago. Good on ‘er!