Phew! My Peppa Pig days will continue

Steve's baby daughter made amazing progress this week, or so his wife thought

STEVE CANAVAN: It was a lot of rattle over just a little roll

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Next month my daughter Alyssa reaches the ripe old age of four and right from the start one thing has always brought a smile to her face – the world’s most famous cartoon pig.

Peppa Pig had been a fixture in our house even before Alyssa was born as her elder sister Caitlin had also been an avid viewer in her early years.

Maybe if I was three I would understand

From potty training to first words, to the first day at pre-school, Peppa Pig was there.

Along with every pre-school child in Britain, my children were die-hard Peppa fans. An episode of the popular show lasts just five minutes but it is full of slapstick and irreverent humour. It also has something else that keeps pre-schoolers hooked on the show episode after episode, but I’ve never been able to work out what it is. Maybe if I was three I would understand.

Looking at the sales figures the popularity of Peppa shows no signs of waning. DVD sales have surpassed 7.5 million and book sales have boomed to 5.4 million. Even the Peppa Pig magazine was the number one licensed pre-school magazine.

It’s not just UK children that have fallen in love with the show. It’s broadcast in 180 countries. I can’t even name that many countries. I also know too well there are hundreds of things you can buy featuring the pink pig. Bedding, books, stationery, toys... Everything is available to buy featuring the little pink pig.

But of course there isn’t just Peppa. The show has other characters too. There are Peppa’s parents, daddy and mummy pig.

She also has a little brother called George. Many friends, including Danny Dog, Suzy Sheep and Rebecca Rabbit. And don’t forget her teacher Madam Gazelle. Of course, if you have the Peppa Pig teddy, you must have mummy and daddy pig, George and the rest of the gang. With a large family, after a few birthdays and Christmases my daughter Caitlin had accumulated many of the teddys and liked to sleep with them all.

I’ll never forget the night I was searching the house high and low for Danny Dog as she wouldn’t fall asleep without him. Now Alyssa has started watching a show called Ben and Holly’s Little Kingdom which is very similar to Peppa Pig, In fact it is made by the same people and they clearly know what pre-schoolers want to watch.

Alyssa recently declared that Ben and Holly’s Little Kingdom is her new favourite TV show, but she also made clear she is still very much a Peppa Pig fan which means she’s still very happy to visit Peppa Pig World at Paultons Park. I enjoy the park just as much as she does, so I was happy to hear this.