Ladybird Books “Well Loved Tales” [1960’s & 1970’s]

There were 27 titles in the original series “Well Loved Tales” (6O6D, Easy Reading), which were produced between 1964 to 1974 with a hardback matt cover. In 1979 Ladybird began to completely redesigned the series with new illustrations throughout and adding several new stories (see lower down for more info).

Listed below is the original series with publication years and book numbers, plus the re-designed books (grey title denote books which aren’t pictured here).

Original Series 1964-74/79 Re-designed Series 1979-91
1964

1. Cinderella

1965

2. The Elves and the Shoemaker
3. Sleeping Beauty
4. Jack and the Beanstalk
5. The Three Little Pigs

1966

6. Dick Whittington and his Cat
7. The Gingerbread Boy
8. The Little Red Hen

1967

9. The Princess and the Pea
10. Puss in Boots [not re-designed]

1968

11. Rumpelstiltskin
12. Beauty and the Beast
13. The Sly Fox and the Little Red Hen
14. Rapunzel
15. The Three Billy Goats Gruff

1969

16. The Wolf and the Seven Little Kids
17. Snow White and Rose Red
18. Chicken Licken
19. Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs

1970

20. The Enormous Turnip

1971

21. Goldilocks and the Three Bears
22. The Magic Porridge Pot

1972

23. The Big Pancake
24. Little Red Riding Hood

1973

25. The Old Woman and her Pig [not re-designed]
26. The Princess and the Frog

1974

27. The Musicians of Bremen

1979

  • The Princess and the Pea
  • Snow White and Rose Red
  • The Wolf and the Seven Little Kids
  • The Ugly Duckling
  • Tom Thumb
  • Pinocchio

1980

  • Beauty and the Beast
  • Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
  • The Emperor’s New Clothes
  • The Little Mermaid

1981

  • Chicken Licken
  • Cinderella
  • The Golden Goose

1982

  • The Enormous Turnip
  • The Big Pancake
  • The Musicians of Bremen
  • Jack and the Beanstalk
  • Thumbelina
  • Town Mouse and Country Mouse
  • Hansel and Gretel

1983

  • The Goose Girl
  • Brave Little Tailor
  • The Sorcerer’s Apprentice
  • The Snow Queen

1984

  • The Wizard of Oz
  • The Firebird
  • The Tinder Box

1985

  • The Sly Fox and the Little Red Hen
  • Rapunzel
  • The Pied Piper of Hamelin

1986

  • The Little Red Hen
  • Dick Whittington and his Cat
  • Rumpelstiltskin
  • The Princess and the Frog

1987

  • The Three Billy Goats Gruff
  • The Twelve Dancing Princesses
  • The Emperor and the Nightingale

1988

  • Little Red Riding Hood
  • Peter and the Wolf

1989

  • The Elves and the Shoemaker
  • The Three Little Pigs
  • Goldilocks and the Three Bears
  • The Magic Porridge Pot

1990

  • Sleeping Beauty

1991

  • The Gingerbread Man

These are the original cover illustrations shown in order of publication, using the standard font from 1967. See lower down for early variations.



The first editions of books 1-8 had no logo on the cover until their first re-prints, and also used a different font type.


The first re-prints of books 1-8 still used the original font but now had the logo, book 9 first edition also used the original font with the inclusion of a white background logo.



Seven of the re-printed editions from 1973 onwards excluded the wording “A Ladybird Easy Reading Book”, I don’t know why. The last three books (25, 26 & 27) never included this phrase at all.



The original 1964 Cinderella publication was the only title in this series produced with a dust jacket. Ladybird stopped making them from 1965 onwards.




In 1979, Ladybird began to completely re-design the series with new illustrations throughout and adding several new stories (up 1991). Only two books were not included in the re-design (10 & 25), which carried on being printed unchanged. The original books were re-printed with matt covers up to around 1985, then gloss until they were re-designed. Nine of the original books had their covers altered slightly to include the new logo up until they too were re-designed.
I don’t know why some books carried on being printed in their original form, whilst these ones were altered.




First edition’s
(or near enough) can be clarified by the back covers as they will list all books up to the current book and no more. If there are other books after its title listed then it is a re-print.
Millions of “Well Loved Tales” were sold in countless editions (and many countries), and as each book only included its original publication date it can be hard to know how old it is. To tell approximately what it’s year of print was simply cross reference the number of books listed so far in the series (back cover) with the sale price (back or inside) and Ladybird books tally (also back cover if included).
From 1969, Ladybird books had 2/6d 121/2p stamped on the back ready for decimalisation in 1971. Books with a black block on the back have been re-priced (usually from 15p to 18p). Bar codes were included from c.1984.

Tally No Date Price Date
100
120
135
140
150
160
170
190
200
210
220
225
230
240
250
260
270
280
290
300
320
330
340
350
360
370
1963
1964/5
1965
1965
1966
1966
1966
1967
1967
1968
1968
1968
1969
1969
1969
1969
1970
1970
1971
1972
1973
1973
1973
1974
1974
1974
2,6d
2/6d 121/2p
15p
18p
24p
30p
40p
50p
60p
70p
75p
85p
90p
99p
£1.20
£1.30
1965 – Feb 1969
Feb 1969 – May 1971
1 Jun 1971 – 30 Apr 1974
1 May 1974 – 15 Jun 1975
16 Jun 1975 – 10 Jan 1978
11 Jan 1978 – 24 Jun 1979
25 Jun 1979 – 31 Dec 1980
1 Jan 1981 – 30 Jun 1982
1 Jul 1982 – 31 Dec 1983
1 Jan 1984 – 31 Dec 1985
1 Jan 1985 – 31 Dec 1986
1 Jan 1987 – 31 Dec 1987
1 Jan 1988 – 31 Dec 1988
1 Jan 1989 – 31 Dec 1989
1 Jan 1990 – 31 Dec 1990
1 Jan 1991 – 31 Dec 1991

Below are images of first edition back covers, or as close as I can find (some may need a lower tally number). There are still a few to find.


Cinderella Back Covers
To get an idea just how many re-print there were, here are a selection of back covers for Cinderella I have tried to date.


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