Denys Fisher

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Denys Fisher
Born11 May 1918
Died17 September 2002 (Aged 84)
Known forInventor of Spirograph
Spouse(s)Elizabeth Stephenson (m1940); Kate Waide (m1969)

Denys Fisher (11 May 1918 – 17 September 2002) was an English engineer who invented the spirograph toy and created the company Denys Fisher Toys.

He left Leeds University to join the family firm, Kingfisher (Lubrication) Ltd. In 1960 he left the firm to set up his own company, Denys Fisher Engineering, in Leeds. In 1961 the company won a contract with NATO to supply springs and precision components for its 20 mm cannon. Between 1962 and 1964 he developed various drawing machines from Meccano pieces, eventually producing a prototype Spirograph. Patented in 16 countries, it went on sale in Schofields department store in Leeds in 1965. A year later, Fisher licensed Spirograph to Kenner Products in the United States. In 1967 Spirograph was chosen as the UK Toy of the Year.

Denys Fisher Toys, which also produced other toys and board games, was sold to Palitoy in 1970 and it was subsequently bought by Hasbro. Through the 1980s & 1990s Fisher continued to work with Hasbro in developing new toys and refining Spirograph.

Toys and games[edit]

Denys Fisher Toys produced the following toys and games:


  • "Denys Fisher - Times Online Obituary". London: The Times. 2002-10-26. Retrieved 2008-07-26.