Thanks to the 'GUARDIAN' Digital Archive for providing most of these items. Hopefully every newspaper will follow suit and let me expand this area.
Guardian newspaper logo
In the 'GUARDIAN', here have been quite a few references to the world's first, and finest, plastic construction toy over the years. For simplicity, I have split them into four sections. [There is actually a fifth section, c. 2015, when there was a flurry of correspondence [sadly not archived] which I will follow up ASAP]. Click on the links immediately below to jump to the section concerned : -


To date I have found two of these : -
The first, somewhat belatedly, is the announcement of the MECCANO takeover of BAYKO, on November 19th, 1959. The blame for this tardiness, getting on for two months late, must surely rest with Mr MECCANO, who missed yet another opportunity for publicity! To be even fairer to the 'GUARDIAN', there are three other versions of this announcement, the others being in toy trade publications, which the paper's deadlines allowed it to thrash…
Announcement of the MECCANO takeover of NAYKO from the Guardian, 19/11/1959.
GUARDIAN, March, 1962 Poland trade deal announcement
The second announcement, in the 'GUARDIAN' on March 22nd, 1962, relates to the successful sealing of a substantial deal for an export order from Poland.  The list of products involved included BAYKO, and must have been one of the last real high points in MECCANO's history…
…or am I being too pessimistic, too cynical even‽
If you think back to the politics of the day, this was part of an early melting of the Cold War between the West and the Warsaw Pact countries, which, not surprisingly, included Poland, which explains the significance and newsworthyness of what would otherwise have been a relatively mundane commercial item.
In this case the trade only delivered this announcement in May, 1962, another plus for the 'GUARDIAN'


These are, for the most part, the commercial equivalent of the classified ads., but actually giving you the opportunity [which, sadly, you've missed!] to buy retail businesses which list [established] BAYKO agencies as part of their assets : -
An opportunity to step into a mixed business, including BAYKO, located on the “Cheshire Coast” [presumably the Wirral] which appeared in the 'GUARDIAN' classified section on January 14th, 1954.
Cheshire coast [presumably the Wirral] retail opportunity in the GUARDIAN, January 14th, 1954
The departmental list “Stationary, Books, Library, Toys, Sweets and Tobacco” to me points towards a seaside resort [New Brighton?] but there could, of course, be a variety of possible locations.
Manchester suberbs retail business opportunity, 'GUARDIAN'. October 25th, 1955
This time this located retail opportunity is in the suburbs of Manchester [remember the 'GUARDIAN' was still called the 'MANCHESTER GUARDIAN' at the time]. It was published on October 25th, 1955'.
Interestingly, it is described as a corner shop, and mixes toys with “News, Sweet, …Tobacco, …WALL's Ice-cream”.
This ia a little different in so far as the same advert appears twice - six days apart. I've no idea how common this was, or if the fact that the adverts appeared on different days of the week was significant, other than to broaden the target audience.
Dewsbury retail opportunity, 'GUARDIAN' August 8th, 1957

Second copy of the Dewsbury retail opportunity, 'GUARDIAN', 14th August, 1957
The first of the two [right, upper] was printed, in the 'GUARDIAN', on August 8th, 1957
…the second [right, lower] was published on August 14th, 1957.
This multi channel opportunity adds “Morning News, Stationary, Tobacco, and …Prams” to the Toys.
H. Thompson auction advert for Fire and Water damaged toy stock
Back in Manchester again, but this time for an auction, by H. Thompson & Sons [who appear not to exist any more] for “Fire and Water Damaged Toys and Model Kits”, right in the city centre. 
The offering obviously came from a shop which sold craft materials and fishing tackle.
In Christmas 1965, and 1966, I worked in Neville's toy shop, in Blackburn [which still had stocks of BAYKO spares, and also sold prams and things]. That too burnt down, a couple of years later - small world, isn't it‽
I can't be sure if all the above shop offerings were truly typical of the time, or if the mixed offerings were actually indicative of the already vulnerable end of the toy trade - I'll have to leave you to make up your own mind.


There have been no less than half a dozen inclusions of the word BAYKO in various articles in the 'GUARDIAN' over the decades. Sadly they're all mere passing references, so I have made an executive decision(!) not to include any of the articles in full, but just the relevant paragraphs, so you can get a feel for the context. Most are simple nostalgia, with the occasional architectural reference.

May 11th, 1961
November 2nd, 1975
June 14th, 1987
Mar 30th, 2001
Clip from a Guardian article May 11th, 1961
Clip from a Guardian article November 2nd, 1975
Clip from a Guardian article June 14th, 1987
Clip from a Guardian article May 14th, 2001
September 11th, 1999
May 14th, 2001
Clip from a Guardian article September 11th, 1999
Clip from a Guardian article May 5th, 2001


There was a brief flurry in the last quarter of 2015, which I will follow up, but the basics are available in the table below'
The following table gives you links to the 'Guardian' letters pages on their website, which they gave me permission to include in my website.

Ross Slowly
Ruyton XI Towns, Shropshire
November 9th, 2015
Michael Thorn
Helston, Cornwall


I will explore this as soon as I can.
Well, that's all I've managed to acquire, so far. However, I'm sure there must be more out there. If you know of any other articles or items of interest mentioning the world's first and finest plastic construction toy, then I'd love to hear from you…

Below here are links to related info : -

Click on any of the links below for related information.

The 'Flaming BAYKOMAN' site logo

Latest update - August 11, 2022
The BAYKO name and Logo are the Registered Trade Mark of Transport of Delight.