I think I had thought of the name for this blog before I'd even thought of this blog, if that makes sense. Dame Washalot was one of my favorite Enid Blyton characters when I was a kid and The Magic Faraway Tree was probably my favorite series,closely followed by Malory Towers & Famous Five. I've contemplating a picture of Dame Washalot for a blog banner & found this in a book I bought from the opshop recently.
Then I had second thoughts & decided I'd better do my own banner making. I haven't been able to find the name of the illustrator, but the picture's from the Dean & Son edition 1971. There's lots of interesting Faraway Tree information here.
Reading through the book, I also found this passage which I remember reading as I girl (I kid you not). The children's mother, who takes in washing to supplement the family income, is sick & worried about who will do the washing. Imagine having an enchanted wood at your backfence with pixies, goblins, faeries & a strange woman for whom joy is found in dirty laundry.
Not to mention a visiting parade of strange lands at the top of the tree. Ooh just imagine!