An introduction to "The Q-Bikes", drawn by Andy Hutton. © DC Thomson

In Memoriam: “Q-Bikes” Beano artist Andy Hutton

An introduction to "The Q-Bikes", drawn by Andy Hutton. © DC Thomson
A 1966 introduction to “The Q-Bikes”, drawn by Andy Hutton. © DC Thomson

 

We’re sorry to report the passing of former Beano artist Andrew Hutton, who died aged 91 on 15th January 2015.

An artist and teacher, Andrew, also known as Andy, was born in Calcutta and lived abroad in his youth with his brother before settling in Dundee in his teens, attending the Morgan Academy. He left school at 14 to work with DC Thomson before joining the RAF to train as a pilot, but eyesight problems led to him serving most of his service years as a radar plotter.

After World War Two, he gained a degree in art and design and lectured at Duncan of Jordanstone School of Art, moving to Canada with his wife, Pamela, shortly after their marriage in 1950 to work on nuclear reactor construction.

When he returned to Dundee in the 1950s he found work with The Beano and worked on the title for 25 years, beginning with the adventure strip “Red Rory of the Eagles” and drawing strips such as  “Jack Flash” (on later episodes), “The Vengeance of the One Eye” (1957),”Kilty MacTaggart” (1957), “Tough Duff” (1957), “The Kangaroo Kid” (1959), “Teeko” (1959) and “Jonny Hawke” (1973).

His last work on The Beano appears to be the fondly-remembered “The Q-Bikes“, which began in 1963 and centred on a young group of bike-riding heroes, running until 1971 (briefly changing series name to “The Q-Karts” in 1969). The strip was revived for Buddy in 1981.

He also worked on Commando inhouse. Although not credited as an artist on the title, current editor Calum Laird believes he would have been involved in doing art alterations or re-finishing covers modified from prints of Spanish and Italian artists stock paintings. That work is either unrecorded or credited to “Staff” in the title’s records.

He and his family moved to Glenrothes in 1971 where he worked as an art teacher at Glenrothes High School, a post he held until he retired.

The Courier: Obituary

The Beano – “Red Rory of the Eagles” page

The Beano – ” Jack Flash” page

Read an episode of “Johnny Hawke” on The Beano web site

The Beano – “The Q-Bikes” page (includes an early adventure with the team)

Lew Stringer pays tribute to Andrew with a guide to “The Q-Bikes”

International Heroes: “The Q-Bikes

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John Freeman

The founder of downthetubes, John describes himself as is a "freelance comics operative", working as an editor, as Creative Consultant on the Dan Dare audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. John has worked in British comics publishing for over 30 years. His credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine at Marvel UK and Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine at Titan Magazines. He also edited STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics, including Team M.O.B.I.L.E. and The Beatles Story. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War and “Dan Dare” for Tian Books. He’s the writer of “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood for digital comic 100% Biodegradable.

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