Text with odd visual joke
Drawn by Ken Harrison
23 appearances (over 20½ pages) from issue no. 2 (25/01/75) to no. 24 (28/06/75).
All were printed in black and white.
The readers’ letters page. Sammy solicits material in the feature’s first appearance – “it can be about your school, your town, your pet, maybe – anything, in fact! ” (but it would usually be a weak joke). Every letter printed would receive a £1. This doesn’t sound much but remember CRACKER itself only cost 6p so you could buy 16 copies of CRACKER and still have 4p change. Imagine THE BEANO offering 16 times its cover prize for a letter and you get a better idea of the worth.
The first outing consisted of a weak visual joke (what has a bark but no bite? A tree…), a trick, a form for 1st, 2nd, 3rd favourite story (and reader’s raspberry! – the form was a permanent fixture on the page), and a trailer for a forthcoming competition. The following two weeks had a newspaper-like feel (jokes as reports) before becoming a standard ‘jokes’ page.
The first jokes to be credited as readers’ contributions were in issue no. 8 (Christopher Wilby, London and Mark Annal, Belvadere, Kent). The last five outings covered half a page each, and in the last appearance Sammy thanked the readers for their funny stories and asked them to “keep sending your jokes and cartoons to Jest a Minute.”