Hourihane, Ursula

About the author

Ursula Hourihane wrote books aimed at the younger reader. She was amongst the first to use what Muriel M Green, writing in The Library Review in 1947 called ‘the new method of illustration by colour photographs’, for The Friendly Adventures of Button and Mac (1946). Her later story, The Tale of Julip, a story about the then newly created Julip model ponies, was illustrated with photographs. These, in their first incarnation, were very different to the ponies we know now. They were much more fanciful in form, and came in a rainbow of colours. Julip fairly soon moved on to a more conventional form of pony portraiture, but The Tale of Julip is a fascinating portrait of post-war toy creation.

Finding the books
All are very difficult to find.

Links and sources
Thank you to Dawn Harrison for all her help.
Library Review, Vol 11, 3, 300-301
The early history of Julip: Julip company website – no longer available.


The Tale of Julip

Adam Press, London, 1948, 45 pp. Photographs by Gee Denes

The Julip model horse range was developed by Lavender Dower after World War II. This story features the Julip ponies (radically different from the more realistic form they took later) photographed in various diorama settings. The hero is a foal called Julip, who is searching for The Great Pan, who he hopes will give him wings. He meets different animals in the woods on his travels
before meeting Pan.

Bargain pony

Frederick Muller, London, 1953, 158 pp.

The Irish Delaney family come to live at The Manor, and three Meredith children are delighted. The two families have a lot in common, particularly horses. They want to buy a Bargain Pony from some gipsies on the beach, and between them try to earn enough money to buy the “misfit”

Danny Finds the Sea

University of London Press, London, 1958, 32 pp, illus Rene Hummerstone

Other than the fact this is a donkey story, I know very little about it.

short stories

Ponies for a Pageant in Pony Magazine, May 1953, illus Margaret May