Building bridges and spanning generations, why Ladybird just loves LEGO®!

Did you know the world famous little plastic LEGO® bricks have been around for over 80 years? No wonder they’ve made a film with the best tagline in the world “the greatest movie ever assembled” and even David Beckham (who one might have thought would be spending his spare time building his real life Empire!) is a fan!

At Ladybird, we’ve been publishing LEGO books since 2010 but many of us have been fans of the play sets, minifigures and bricks for much longer than that. From a 1980’s LEGO Duplo hospital set and a tricky 346-piece Big Ben build to LEGO minifigure wedding cake toppers, we Ladybirds have been reading about, playing with, and of course building with LEGO for years. We asked some of the Ladybird team what they love most about LEGO and what it means to them and their families.

Adam (40), with Bethany (9) and Toby (8)

LEGO for us is a family thing . . . we love the fact we can tip the LEGO box upside down on the carpet and then build almost anything with a little time and imagination. With everyone helping out to construct different elements it’s quite a social thing for us. It keeps my kids occupied for way longer than the iPad would and results in a greater sense of achievement at the end.

Gary (33)
Gary_2“I can remember being obsessed with the LEGO pirate ship when I was about nine years old. It had sails, cannons, a treasure map, minifigures with moustaches, and even a monkey. It was AMAZING! Of course, it was a pretty tough build, which gave my dad a good excuse to help with putting it together after I delightedly unwrapped it one glorious Christmas morning. Several hours later, and it was off to the high seas, with my bedroom carpet as the ocean and my sister’s My Little Ponies the unwitting victims of a pillaging pirate attack. Arrr-haaarrrr! Did I mention it included a monkey?”

Emma (32), with Sam (3) and Harry (1)


“Sam likes that he can build whatever he likes with LEGO – and that he can build up really high! He likes that there are animals and cars and that he can make his own big cars.”

Alex (41), with Isaac (11) and Talia (8)

I loved building with LEGO in the 1970s but only ever used it to make houses: green base, white picket fence, red roof and the same safe four walls, over and over again. It's only as a mum and a wife that I've witnessed the limitless possibilities of LEGO.  Encouraged, supervised and – let's face it – directed, by a very dextrous dad, who is passionate about LEGO creations, in the last year my kids have built everything from a zoo of mini-beasts to a giant pirate ship, by way of giant seasonal religious objects (chanukiah) and a scale-model of our 1950s Rayburn oven!

Tell us your childhood memories of LEGO and WIN a LEGO activity book!

We'd love to hear your childhood memories of LEGO. Just leave a comment below and we'll pick four winners, who will each win a copy of this LEGO movie activity book with minifigure – good luck!


Enter by midnight, 20th February 2014. Four winners will be chosen at random. UK only. T&Cs here


28 thoughts on “Building bridges and spanning generations, why Ladybird just loves LEGO®!

  1. Norrie Panton says:

    Thanks for the mention Gary. I thoroughly enjoyed building the Lego pirate ship that Christmas as well.
    Gary’s dad!

  2. Katie Clinton says:

    Playing alongside my brother, no fighting, no talking except for “can I have a red twoer” and no girl’s or boy’s toys chat – just creating and enjoying 😀

  3. Angela Campbell says:

    I remember painting the faces of my brother’s LEGO men to look like women, I think that was before female LEGO people were created 😀

  4. Katie Walters says:

    Me and my siblings got lego bought for us one Christmas by my mom, but we always wanted to build stuff at the same time, and would never have ebought pieces between us to finish what we were building

  5. Kathryn booth says:

    An old roses tin filled with lego, making houses with my sister, both of us fighting over the ‘TV’…white blocks with a sticker on!

  6. karen hutchinson says:

    I used to like building houses – the most detailed accessories were windows and trees , nothing like all the great sets these days !

  7. Hilary Carr says:

    My Lego memories were sketchy until my 5 year old started playing with it. My mother-in-law had kindly kept my husbands Lego (much of which was second hand) and there are pieces from the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s. Seeing some of these bits again reminded me of all the houses and shops I used to build. All his new sets are much cooler though!

  8. I can remember building hotels with my Lego bricks. They had beds and chairs and tables and even the odd window. I don’t think the ladybirds were as keen on my hotels as I had to keep getting new occupants!

  9. Susie Wilkinson says:

    I just remember playing with the LEGO with my 2 brothers and fighting over the pieces we all wanted to finish our creations!

  10. Leah Tonna says:

    Our daughters loved the Wild West Town set in the 80s, it was passed on complete to our step-grandson who played with it for years, but wasn’t quite so careful! Our 3 and 1 year old grandchildren are still at the Duplo stage but have vivid imaginations, so we’ll never be short of Lego gift ideas.

  11. Siobhan Morton-Roberts says:

    I remember the excitement of many Christmas mornings when Santa had brought Lego. I love the fact that I can be transported back to those happy memories when I see my own kids faces when they get new Lego.

  12. I remember very vividly that I knew exactly how many bricks I had and refining and refining until I got the biggest house for my bricks. Every now and again we’d get a few more bricks, but I never got enough to make an entire roof for my house, even with plates for part of the roof.
    I remember getting my Lego family when I was around 4 (1975) and I loved them, but I wanted a Grandpa and I couldn’t ever possibly build a house big enough! When I was older and the first minifigure arrived I thought they were fantastic. They were simple 3-part models with the moulded arms stuck to their sides and no face, but they were great – and they COULD live in a house I made 🙂

  13. Helen Wyatt says:

    My Childhood memory of Lego was going to Fenwicks Toy Departmant and standing in awe looking at the life size Lego model, I would stand for ages wondering how long it took to build!

  14. Oh how I love(d) lego!! My favourite set was the baddies castle which I got in the 80s, with a few spacemen and police officers mixed in. I even got the blacksmiths forge to extend it when it opened out!! I remember getting the catalogues from the toy shop and because we couldn’t afford much I’d cut the sets out and play with the pictures too 🙂 We have just rediscovered some of my old sets and as I type the internet is being used to rebuild them. We’ll be at the front of the queue for the Lego movie – can’t wait 😀

  15. L says:

    I never had lego as a child. However, my daughter loves it now, and I’m so pleased you do Heartlake City – it’s much more girl-friendly than the traditional lego, which I think is a good thing.

  16. I remember having huge boxes of Lego at infant school. Loved it. Probably one of the only times i would keep still- Wanting to create my masterpiece. My son is an avid Lego fan. He has autism and again one of the few times he will be settled is when he builds, ready for his next Lego adventure.

  17. Catherine Hughes says:

    I remember very vividly being so excited every time we went to visit my Auntie & Uncle because my cousins had a huge box of lego. I spent hours trying to build the biggest house possible, I always wanted to make one big enough to fit my Sindy dolls in but there were never quite enough pieces! I loved it anyway, the fun of building was always better than something being ‘finished’. I’m loving it all over again now with my lego-mad 6 year old, who is currently counting down the days to the lego movie launch 🙂

  18. sarah says:

    One Christmas Santa got a bit confused and gave me my brothers stocking and he, mine. My brother less than keen on the brownie annual , but he did like the lego.

  19. Playing with my sister and dad, my son loves lego his dad had a big bag of lego in a pillowcase in his parents loft. Is there anyone who doesn’t love lego. I enjoyed it as a child now I enjoy building with my child.

  20. Annie Fletcher says:

    I remember my brother never letting me play with his lego. Then having my own children we started with lego duplo now onto the main stuff my son loves nothing better than building something, playing for a few wks and then getting me to take it apart for him to build again. My son prefers the sets but my daughter loves nothing better than a big box of bricks.
    Even the hubby got lego for christmas. It truly is family occasion.
    Annie x

  21. Jessica L says:

    My childhood memories of Lego are predominantly of building houses. My best friend had much more lego than me – trees, wheels etc. so I could get a bit more creative when I played at her house – I remember being very jealous of her lego!

  22. emma louise hampson says:

    i remeber as a small child gettin my first box of lego i was so attached to it and couldnt stop building diffrent things it kept me amused for hours

  23. Adrick says:

    Ladybird may have started publishing LEGO books in 2010, but it wasn’t the first time! I have LEGO Pirate and Fabuland books from the 80s/90s, and they’re amazing! If anyone at Ladybird can tell me more about these books, I’d love to hear from them.

  24. Lego is a big hit in our house with our 6, 4 & 2 year old, I love making things with them as it reminds me so much of when I was growing up. Even my Dad has recently got back into it and we have been buying him the new cool Technics kits, the kids love seeing them built.
    Lego is great fun for all ages!

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