A Yorkshire-based retail channel company, High Street TV, has announced the creation of a new team of senior executives which it is hoped will help boost the profile and success of the company, reports the website Entirely Yorkshire.
High Street TV operates five television channels dedicated to shopping in the UK, and is described as the country’s most successful and longest running multi-channel DRTV Home Shopping Channel, diffusing around 3,000 hours of viewing time across its platforms, along with advertising on another fifty channels including major outlets like Channel 4 and Five. The media firm specialises in selling home and fitness goods, such as food preparation devices, electronics and fitness machines.
The company has already enjoyed considerable success in a highly competitive industry, making it to the The Sunday Times Fast Track 100 business rankings of fast-growing firms. High Street TV has also being named the third fastest growing in its native county with a 42nd place ranking in the national league.
The company’s most significant appointment is Andy Haywood. Previously involved with High Street TV as a creative consultant, Haywood will commence a new role as Head of Creative. He has worked in a creative capacity for several high-profile media companies, agencies and other clients. In a comment attributed to him by Entirely Yorkshire, Haywood said: “The opportunity for me to leave my own footprint on High Street TVs brand identity and creative portfolio is really exciting. We’ve already begun assembling a fantastic team with the knowledge and experience to really push the company’s brand and creativity to another level so I’m looking forward to seeing what we can achieve for High Street TV.”
Alongside Haywood, the shopping channel firm have also hired three other executives who will bring more original content and creativity to High Street TV. Jill Ford, formerly of baby products company Mamas & Papas joins as Senior Designer. Will Parkinson , previously a graphic designer at electronics firm Siemens, will start a new job as Middleweight Designer; and James MacDonald, a Dublin-based medical animation specialist and television director, will take on the mantle of Lead Animator.
High Street TV’s marketing director Francesca Woodward told Entirely Yorkshire: “We were continuously impressed by Andy’s innovative approach to his role as Creative Consultant, so when we were looking towards appointing a Head of Creative, Andy was a natural fit.’
Along with Andy, we’ve welcomed three new employees to the High Street TV team. Will, James and Jill have brought a wealth of experience to the company, and they will work together to strengthen our brand identity through fresh and innovative creative content”
An image of trainers, a television and 1980s gaming items produced by an unknown artist for the clothing retailer Diesel. Featuring their new SKB model of trainer, the picture draws its influence predominately from the vaporwave art movement (combining pastel and bright colours, retro designs and 1980s nostalgic throwbacks), but with a slight nod to the photography trend known as ‘flat lay’.
As the presidential campaign in the United States heats up with only a month left to go before elections on the 8th November 2016, a well-loved voice from the other side of the Pond has made a few choice words about the controversial Republican candidate Donald Trump, the UK’s ITV News service reported yesterday.
Actor and voiceover artist Brian Blessed, famed for his distinctive booming vocals, rounded on the billionaire during a video interview with the ITV channel, in which he described Trump as a ‘total, complete utter moron’ in what ITV News described as an ‘extraordinary outburst’.
Blessed has long been a feature of British television screens, renowned as much for his imposing chestnut brown beard as for his voice. He was born in Mexborough, Yorkshire in 1936 and first appeared in the programme Z-Cars in 1962 and has made a living appearing both behind the screen and on stage, as well as doing voiceovers and bit roles for television adverts.
In the interview, the actor told ITV how he could not understand how a nation that has produced so many brilliant minds now has a large part of its electorate backing a man whom he felt was ‘gormless’ and ‘tasteless’. Blessed also personally addressed Donald Trump in the interview, picking on his blonde toupee-like hairstyle by saying that the candidate should ‘get a haircut and scram’. Blessed also said “America’s full of such brilliant people – brilliant professors, brilliant scientists but you have an appalling, gormless, tasteless, individual like Trump, who really [fart sound] is that, isn’t he?”
“An appalling creature.”
“What they hell are they doing with him? He’s a total, complete utter moron.”
Blessed made the comments shortly after he collected an OBE (Order of the British Empire) royal honour for services to the arts and charity in a Birthday Honours ceremony presided over by Queen Elizabeth II at her residence Windsor Castle. He is a patron of the Hopefield Animal Sanctuary and of PHASE (Practical Help Achieving Self Empowerment) which is a network of NGOs and charities working to improve the lives of people in remote parts of Nepal.
Currently in the US presidential race, both Trump and Democrat candidate Hillary Clinton are neck-and-neck, and hotel magnate Trump has repeatedly found himself in hot water over a series of disparaging and racial comments, including selling off welfare services, proposing a wall separating his country and Mexico to keep out illegal immigrants and banning all Muslims from settling in America. The US elections are been keenly followed in the UK with most people aware of the main issues and contenders and hours of news time on British television dedicated to the election coverage.
The event, which takes place in London over the May Bank Holiday weekend from April 30th to May 2nd, will see attendees receive advice and insights in their chosen industry from BAFTA Award winners, nominees and the Academy’s industrial partners.
BAFTA have also released a YouTube trailer to encourage people starting out in the creative industries to come and bring their ideas and how to get a foot in the door.
Tickets cost only £6 per session, making Guru LIVE ideal for students on a tight budget.
BAFTA is a independent charity that support and nurtures film and TV talent and production in the U.K., by identifying and rewarding excellence, inspiring practitioners and benefiting the public. It offers training and networking opportunities via workshops, masterclasses, scholarships, lectures and mentoring schemes, connecting with audiences of all ages and backgrounds across the U.K. and abroad in Los Angeles and New York, U.S.A.
Atkinson, who still was able to effortlessly slip back into character even at the age of 60, took along the 1976 British Leyland Mini 1000 car for a celebratory ride through the roads around Buckingham Palace, the usual home of Queen Elizabeth II. Photographers snapped Atkinson at one point sitting on a drab grey armchair identical to the one featured in the Mr Bean series, which ran from 1990 to 1995 and warmed a nation’s heart to the bumbling and mumbling suit-clad man who went on adventures with his loyal companion, a teddy bear named Teddy. He also oddly enough was seen clutching a mop, one of his character’s ‘tools of the trade’.
Atkinson/Mr. Bean also presented a special cake in the shape of the numbers 25 to reporters outside the front gates of the Palace as part of the fun quarter-century stunt. The comedian also posed with a pyramid of gifts emblazoned with the number 25. His trusty little car got into the spirit too, its flanks marked with the hashtag #MrBean25.
He also recreated a sketch from the show’s episode ‘Do-It-Yourself Mr Bean’ which first aired on ITV in January 1994. In that scene, Mr Bean goes to do some shopping in the January sales and hilarity ensues when he lands himself some impressive bargains, namely the armchair, the mop, and several tins of paint. After tying the chair to the Mini’s roof, Mr. Bean stuffs the vehicle with the other things only to find that there was no space for him to get in.
In typical Mr Bean buffoonery, he figures out a way to drive the car remotely while sitting in the chair attached to the roof, surprisingly avoiding splattering himself all over the road while doing so.
Atkinson was said to have relished the chance to reprise the role, which he last reprised for television nearly a decade ago in films like Mr. Bean’s Holiday. His friend and travel companion Teddy, however, was just glad to get some sleep after tiring out during the fun journey.
The original Mr. Bean sitcom was created and written by Atkinson and Richard Curtis, from a character Atkinson first came up with while studying in the hallowed halls of Oxford University. Atkinson’s creation, famed for his impeccable taste in both suits and facial expressions, was described by the comedian as a ‘child in a grown man’s body’ whose laughs come from the mishaps with other people he always found himself every time he left his humble rented flat in Highbury, in a posh part of north London.
The show proved a ratings success, with one episode attracting 18.74 million viewers in 1991 and won a fleet of international awards. Mr. Bean has been sold in 245 countries and territories worldwide and made appearances in adverts and shows in places as diverse as Norway and Japan.
Mr Bean made his first appearance in 1987 on stage at the Just for Laughs comedy festival in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. Legend had it that Atkinson opted to perform his character in front of the French-language audience at the Montreal festival, despite Atkinson not knowing French. Mr Bean’s wordless humour proved to stand the language barrier, and then his career went global. After the run of the original episodes was finished in 1995, the endearing buffoon ventured into animation and film before Atkinson announced he was ‘retiring’ Mr. Bean in 2012 as he felt being a man-child was a ‘bit sad’.
The Genome Project, which despite its name has no connection to theHuman Genome Projector to any organisation in the field ofscientific research, was set up by the BBC to encourage its viewers and listeners to search their homes and garages for any old recordings orVCRtapes of BBC and other shows which they are then invited to submit. It is hoped that donations of TV shows from times long gone past will help the BBC preserve older programmes for future generations. The Project’s archives extend from the years 1923 to 2009.
The website enables you to choose individual editions of the Radio Times, as well as search through the magazine archive via year, people’s names, particular programmes and key dates. A virtual gallery of actual Radio Times covers means the Genome Project’s users can witness the changing face of one of theUnited Kingdom’smost recognisable entertainment magazines – which has been a fixture of the country’s living rooms for over ninety years and is still running. The actual schedule information is presented as plain, easy-to-read text.
According to theMetronewspaper, the BBC claims that the project currently has a total of 4,423,654 programmes incorporated into the archive from 4,469 issues of its magazine.
“The hope is that the project will lead to programmes being recovered if the public realises they have audio or video recordings of their own.“
Hilary Bishop, editor of archive development at the BBC, said: “Genome is the closest we currently have to a comprehensive broadcast history of the BBC.
`It is highly likely that somewhere out there, in lofts, sheds and basements across the world, many of these “missing” programmes will have been recorded and kept by generations ofTVand radio fans.
‘So, we’re hoping to use Genome as a way of bringing copies of those lost programmes back in to the BBC archives too.“
The Genome Project will not only be of benefit to media studies and journalism students and historians of public life in the 20th century, but will also be valuable to people who are curious as to what programmes and services were shown on the day they were born.
As part of the celebration of the unveiling of this unique archive, the Half-Eaten Mind’s blogger-in-chief Vijay Shah tried out the BBC’s Genome Project for himself. His aim was to see if he could discover what was broadcast on the day of his birth thirty years ago, Thursday the4th of October, 1984.
My first impression of the BBC’s new Genome Project website was how much it was like many of the other online arms of the BBC in the internet world. Its slick and minimalist design, a hallmark of the public broadcaster, was reassuringly familiar, yet seemed to understate the vast quantity of publicly-accessible data stored inside. I quickly read through the site’s blurb, while distracted by the strapping image taken from a BBC studio filming from the Sixties or Seventies. A camera operative holding an angular relic with the BBC logo from that time splashed on the side sits precariously on the far right, while a slightly dour-faced audience await the show to begin and the cameras to start rolling.
I scrolled down the page to reach a chapter entitled “Browse the issue archive” which gives you all of the years shown in the archive arranged as a table with the columns set aside for different decades. If you scroll further down, there is a selection of thumbnails of front covers from the Radio Times, arranged by decade. Underneath that is a list of up-to-date schedules from the post-digital BBC stable of channels.
I clicked on the year ‘1984’ and that took me to a list of all the Radio Times editions, or issues, for that year, starting from Issue 3139, which came out across England only on the 5th January of that year. The 1984 archive solemnly ends with Issue 3189, published solely for the London TV region on the 20th of December. My birthday issue was numbered 3178, and was published exactly on the 4th October, much to my relief.
Another click of the mouse brought me to some listings of several BBC stations but these only began from the 6th October, which was a Saturday. I then rewound back and tried the previous issue, No. 3177, released on the 27th September 1984. I found TV and radio listings for the following stations: BBC One London, BBC Two England, BBC Radio 1 England, BBC Radio 3, BBC Radio 2 and BBC Radio 4 FM. There is no mention of any schedules for ITV and Channel 4, which probably was not mentioned as these channels are independent of the Beeb and the Radio Times is a publication funded by the BBC’s print media division. C4 had been founded just two years before my birth and satellite, cable, digital and internet TV and radio was not to appear for a couple of decades yet. BBC One, or BBC1 as it was then called, tends towards popular and light entertainment programming, while BBC Two (BBC2) at that time was more geared to educational and political programming, as well as documentaries. I was fascinated by how many shows from my later childhood, such as Blue Peter, Henry’s Cat, Grange Hill (a soap set in an urban secondary school) and the Six O’Clock News withMoira Stewartwere already well established on TV, considering that my memories of these shows are from the late 1980s at the earliest. It was a great trip down memory lane.
While the simple layout of the TV schedules was a bit of a mood killer, I liked the way that information from the pages of the Radio Times was presented in a clear and accessible format, while keeping faithful to the original text, as far as I could see. Even the mention of Ceefax subtitles was retained, showing just how far technology in television had gone since all those years ago.
Here are the TV schedules for BBC1 and BBC2 as they were presented in the Radio Times on 4/10/1984:
2: Pascual Flores Pascual Flores was built 60 years ago in southern Spain as a fast schooner, but she very nearly ended her days as a scruffy little motor coaster. Now she’s restored. Narrator Tom Salmon Director JENNI BURROWS Producer ROBIN DRAKE BBC Bristol. (Part 3 tomorrow at 9.0 am)
with Moira Stuart and Frances Coverdale including a special report on the Labour Party Conference Weather BILL GILES 12.57 Regional News (London and SE: Financial Report, and News Headlines with subtitles)
Mystery at the Old Mine Eric Twinge is just another schoolboy-but when danger calls, a few mouthfuls of his special bananas and Eric is Bananaman. With the voices Of TIM BROOKE-TAYLOR , BILL ODDIE, GRAEME GARDEN, JILL SHILLING Written by BERNIE KAY Music by DAVID COOKE Produced by TREVOR BOND Directed by TERRY WARD
with Howard Stableford Round 3 of this week’s quiz featuring the most amazing brain-teasers in the world. THE KING DAVID HIGH SCHOOL, LIVERPOOL V ST BERNADETTE ‘S RC SCHOOL, BRISTOL Devised by CLIVE DOIG Designers VIC MEREDITH , LES MCCALLUM Producer IAN OLIVER (Part 4 tomorrow at 4.15)
Godzilla, the 600-ton monster who has been asleep for a thousand years, rises from the depths of the Pacific to come to the aid of mankind. In this new series he continues his role as guardian to the crew of the research ship Calico. The Golden Guardians The Golden Guardian attacks Godzilla and turns him into a golden statue.
with Simon Groom Janet Ellis and Michael Sundin Flood Alert! After the summer drought, the villagers of Topsham in Devon were faced with floods when the River Exe produced its highest tide since 1966. Michael helped to build the barricades to protect the centuries-old houses and joined the men of the Devon Fire Brigade keeping anxious watch on the rising waters. Assistant editor LEWIS BRONZE Editor BIDDY BAXTER *CEEFAX SUBTITLES
A series of 18 programmes Episode 5 by MARGARET SIMPSON Jimmy McClaren , the ‘Godfather’ of Grange Hill, begins to take a ‘friendly interest’ in Pogo’s chain-letter enterprise. Devised by PHIL REDMOND Producer KENNY MCBAIN Director CAROL WILKS * CEEFAX SUBTITLES
by ROY CLARKE starring Ronnie Barker with Sharon Morgan and Myfanwy Talog William Thomas , Dickie Arnold Film cameraman REX MAIDMENT Film editor DON CANDLIN Studio lighting RON BRISTOW Designer TIM GLEESON Produced and directed by SYDNEY LOTTERBY *CEEFAX SUBTITLES
Written and presented by Roger Cook Radio 4’s award-winning programme comes to television for a short series to investigate cases raised by viewers which can include unfair dealing, bureaucratic bungling, injustice or even fraud. Video cameraman LAURIE RUSH Researcher DINA GOLD Television producers DAVID BOWEN-JONES and DAVID HANINGTON Editor JOHN EDWARDS Roger Cook’s Checkpoint. A BBC Aerial Book £2.95 from booksellers
from Wembley Arena featuring The Norwich Union Championship Puissance mght at Wembley when all eyes are focussed on the big red wall in the centre of the arena. Plus horses racing against each other in the Knock-Out Stakes, and a look at some of the other entertainment.
Introduced by DAVID VINE Commentators RAYMOND BROOKS-WARD, STEPHEN HADLEY Producer JOHNNIE WATHERSTON
with David Jessel At the heart of the actions that make the news lie decisions and dilemmas, prejudices and passions, that are defined by our sense of what’s right and what’s wrong. Each week David Jessel takes issue with a major story of concern or conscience, and looks for what can be found at the Heart of the Matter.
Film editor MICHAEL ALOOF Series producer COLIN CAMERON
Fay Weldon and Richard Hoggart look at working lives and tides of change in Britain: 3: Sweet Dreams with Miriam Margolyes Managing a small business is a dream to which many people aspire but it’s a dream that doesn’t often come true. A women’s fashion company, a hairdressing salon and an engineering works are three dreams that have come true – but with a struggle.
9.20 Tout compris Everyday life and language of French teenagers. Au college; Au café bar; Chez Claire ; A une boom 9.38 La maree et ses secrets A five-part adventure serial in French by CHRISTOPHER RUSSELL and JANE COTTAVE 3: Une ombre du passé 9.55 Thinkabout See How they Grow It’s hard to believe that Frank was once a baby. 10.12 Science Workshop Paper ‘A’ 10.34 Scene Troubled Minds – What a Lousy Title! 11.5 Near and Far Concrete The look of many towns and cities owes much to the use of concrete. However the extraction of its raw materials – limestone, clay, sand and gravel has had a dramatic effect on rural areas Producer ROBIN GWYN 11.30 Home Ground Towns of Wales 2: Just Down the Road A town is largely composed of buildings – private houses and public edifices. What can these patterns of brick and stone. tile and slate, glass and paint, tell of a town’s history? Presenter STEPHEN BOTCHER Producer J. PHILIP DAVIES BBC Wales 11.55 Swim
ANDREW HARVEY introduces a series for swimmers and non-swimmers of all ages. 3: Breaststroke
12.20 pm Illusions of Reality An examination of newsreels of the 1930s 3: Once a Hun…. Discussion notes from [address removed] 8QT. (Please enclose 12″ x 9″ sae and 33p postage) 12.45 Letting Go 3: Sex Education How parents prepare teenagers for this important part of adult life. 1.10 Mind How You Go Ten programmes about road accident prevention presented by JIMMY SAVILE OBE 3: Think Child 1.20 Encounter: Germany 3: Communications By train from Hamelin to Braunschweig – and the work of the railways. A police car chase; a waterways patrol; an island waterway harbour; and life on a canal barge. 1.38 Around Scotland The Great Glen 1: The Ancient Corridor JOHN CARMICHAEL explains how the Great Glen was formed and shows how man has made use of the landscape for forestry and the production of hydro-electricity. Producer ROBERT CLARK Director PETER LEGGE
My Brother’s Keeper As J.R. drives the final wedge between Pam and Bobby, his masterplan to oust his brother from Ewing Oil gathers momentum. Donna meets an old admirer and Sue Ellen finds she has a new one … Written by ARTHUR BERNARD LEWIS Directed by LEONARD KATZMAN (For cast see Monday. Continued tomorrow at 3.0 pm. Repeat) * CEEFAX SUBTITLES
The last of a three part series starring The Martians November 2006: Earth is an amber cinder, all life annihilated by total nuclear war. A handful of settlers left on Mars are the sole survivors of the human race. They face a desolate future, cut off and isolated even from each other. Sam Parkhill holds a land grant to half of Mars, handed to him by the original inhabitants of the planet. Teleplay by RICHARD MATHESON Produced by ANDREW DONALLY and MILTON SUBOTSKY Directed by MICHAEL ANDERSON A CHARLES FRIES production
Breaking the Mould? For the bulk of production line workers throughout British industry tomorrow’s work will be just like today’s. Mindless…. repetitive…. demoralising. But deep in the ‘pot bank’ they’re trying to reshape working lives. Staffordshire Potteries, Britain’s major mug producers, have adopted a new Japanese style of management. They are aiming to increase the motivation and job satisfaction of their employees by giving them more say in the company’s decisions. But will this really improve work and conditions on the shopfloor, or is it just subtle psychology designed to boost productivity? Open Space goes to the Potteries to find out how shopfloor and management approach the new tomorrow. Producer JEREMY GIBSON COMMUNITY PROGRAMME UNIT
A series that follows the fortunes of entrepreneurs around the world as their stories unfold. Who Dares, Wins Readers? The inside story of this summer’s bizarre circulation war between Fleet Street’s tabloids. Last week’s Commercial Breaks showed how multi-millionnaire Robert Maxwell bought the Daily Mirror. He immediately vowed to topple the Sun as Britain’s top-selling tabloid. This programme goes behind the scenes as Maxwell controls every detail of his campaign, from directing his own commercials to cross-examining his circulation managers. Narrator Hugh Sykes Film editor PETER DELFGOU Research ROBERT THIRKELL Executive producer JONATHAN CRANE Producer DAVID DUGAN
Our sense of humour baffles them, our politics bother them, our preoccupation with tradition bemuses them. Apparently we don’t wash, and we are morose and miserable even on holiday. On the other hand we are polite and kind to animals, and we would be great in a crisis – if we knew one when we saw one. Each week Derek Jameson looks at the way foreign television reports this country. Tonight he looks at foreign interest in the Royal Family and discovers that, in some ways, they are even more obsessed with them than are the natives. Research MARK ROGERS Producer LAURENCE REES
with Ron Bain, Robbie Coltrane. Miriam Margolyes, Roger Sloman, Tracey Ullman. Also featuring Kevin Turvey Special weight-watchers edition: non-fattening sketches, low-calorie situations, semi-skimmed jokes and a protein-packed song.
Music DAVID MCNIVEN DirectorBRIAN JOBSON Producer COLIN GILBERT BBC Scotland
3: On Tour The third documentary in the informal four-part series on the London Symphony Orchestra follows the 107 musicians and their £350,000’s worth of instruments on tour to Paris, Vienna and Frankfurt. The film goes behind the scenes with the orchestra and their conductor Claudio Abbado as they rehearse, relax, worry about the Vienna concert and celebrate their successes. There’s music from WEBERN. MAHLER and SCHUBERT, an appearance by Zubin Mehta and more unexpected glimpses into the habits and attitudes of orchestral musicians. Film cameraman JOHN GOODYER Sound STAN NIGHTINGALE Film editor PETER HARRIS Produced and directed by JENNY BARRACLOUGH
John Tusa and Vincent Hanna with a full report on the day’s events at the Labour Party Conference in Blackpool, with Donald MacCormick and Jenni Murray in London to assess the news at home and abroad. Producer DAVE STANFORD Editor DAVID DICKINSON
Discussion: Alan Plater ‘s ‘Reunion’ The play concerns two men who meet again many years after their schooldays together. It explores the risks involved in personal relationships, and is followed by a discussion with the author and actors.
For our readers and bloggers from the HEM Community, especially those from the UK, you can see what the BBC played on your birthday and reminisce while you’re doing so. Visit the BBC’s Genome project at this link
In an interview with The Sun, a British tabloid newspaper, Norton decided against being a frontrunner for the job of presenting the highly acclaimed and popular show, saying “I wouldn’t jump at the chance,” he told The Sun. “I really enjoy the show but it’s a very tough gig.”
“It’s very hard for a new person to take over… and I’m quite lazy.“
Norton, a stalwart of UK television screens, is also an established comic and originally hails from Ireland. While he was the most popular choice, others have also been considered for the role, including the actor John Barrowman and presenter Nick Knowles.
Norton already has a busy end of the week schedule with the BBC, including his own chat show on the BBC One channel which airs on Friday nights as well as a Saturday show on BBC Radio 2. He is also the official presenter for the public service broadcaster’s coverage of the Eurovision singing contest, and felt that viewers would see too much of him on weekend scheduling.
The 51-year-old said that it would be “a bit weird” to take on a show that could see him on television on Saturdays and Sundays.
Strictly Come Dancing is a televised ballroom dancing show and competition where fifteen celebrities take to the dancefloor to show off their moves along with professional dancing partners. Their efforts are watched and critiqued by a judge’s panel, as each week they must perform a Latin American or ballroom-inspired dance routine while dressed up in glitzy costumes, before the judges help decide who stays on and who is voted off. That decision is made by both the panel and the show’s viewers who can call in their choice by telephone. The eventual winning pair are crowned Strictly Come Dancing Champions of the year. The show has proved so popular that its concept has been exported to over forty other countries and has also inspired a modern-dance themed spin-off Strictly Dance Fever. The twelfth series of the show, with its new presenter, will start in Autumn 2014
Sir Bruce Forsyth, who announced his departure and sparking the race for a new SCD host, has presented the BBC One ratings winner with Tess Daly since it first aired in 2004.
The 86-year-old TV veteran went on to later reveal that the rigours of presenting SCD and relentless media criticism over his ability to continue in the role had been factors in his decision to leave the show. He will however retain his connection with SCD, and will continue presenting work part time on limited edition broadcasts in aid of charities like Children in Need as well as the Christmas specials.
Today the Half-Eaten Mind has penned a special tribute to the actor who played one of the stalwart characters of the hit Eighties comedy Only Fools and Horses, which has gained a cult following among fans and which is still held up as a memorable example of British comedy.
On Thursday 16th January Roger Lloyd Pack, who played the slow-witted roadsweeper Trigger in Only Fools, passed away after a long battle with pancreatic cancer. He was aged 69. He was born in north London in 1944. His father, Charles Lloyd Pack was also an actor, and likewise his daughter, Emily Lloyd followed both her father and grandfather into the profession. Co-star David Jason who played the lovable and roguish oddjob trader Del Boy, paid his own tribute to Lloyd Pack, in an interview with BBC News. Jason described his friend and fellow actor as “a very quiet, kind and unassuming actor who was a pleasure to work with“.
“Although he played the simple soul of Trigger in Only Fools and Horses, he was a very intelligent man and a very fine actor capable of many roles,”
“I shall remember him with fondness and for all the good times we had together.“
Nicholas Lyndhurst, who played Del Boy’s younger brother Rodney, said he was “so saddened to hear about Roger”.
“He was the most accomplished actor and loved by millions. I will miss him greatly.“
In addition to appearing in Only Fools and Horses, Lloyd Pack also made appearances in the role of Owen Newitt in the more recent BBC comedy series The Vicar of Dibley, about the adventures of a female village vicar. He started his acting training at the renowned Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (Rada) before making his stage début in the small English town of Northampton. From the stage he moved onto the silver screen, appearing in the crime drama The Avengers during the Sixties. His first significant full TV début came in 1968, when he played a small part in The Magus.
In 1981, Lloyd Pack joined the Only Fools team as the character Colin ‘Trigger’ Ball. Playing the role of a simple-minded but affable street sweeper, Trigger was notorious for continuously calling Rodney by the name ‘Dave’. “If it’s a girl they’re calling her Sigourney after an actress,” he said of Del Boy’s child-to-be. “And if it’s a boy they’re naming him Rodney, after Dave.” Other than Del Boy and Rodney, Trigger was the only character to appear in both the first and last episodes of the comedy series. Though he enjoyed the role and popularity of Trigger, Lloyd Pack found it difficult at times to cope with the fame. In one archived interview, he expressed bemusement about his popularity with audiences particularly with his face being so recognisable in public. People often came up to him in the street and spoke to him slowly, having confused him with Trigger. Lloyd Pack found that an annoying irritation, but he played the role with a heartfelt and sympathetic realism – and many feel he had made it a natural fit.
Lloyd Pack’s last appearance as Trigger was in 2003, when he reprised the role in a one-off Only Fools Christmas special. After the glory days of filming the hit show, which was set in the south London district of Peckham, he went on to star in a theatre rendition of the English playwright William Shakespeare’s plays Richard III and Twelfth Night at the Globe in London.
Trigger was a regular at the Nag’s Head pub in Peckham, along with old mate Del Boy and his long-suffering younger brother Rodney. Though a roadsweeper by trade legally, Trigger also liked to dabble in the illicit side of things, namely petty thefts and handling stolen goods, as well as informal trading over the pub table with a couple of lagers. Very slow-witted but well-meaning, Trigger was notorious for arriving late to jokes told by his mates. Rodney once thought that Trigger got his nickname due to being a hardened criminal in the past, but it later transpired that he got his his nickname from a legendary 1960’s racehorse who was stuffed for display after his demise.
Trigger speaks in a fairly slow, monotone voice, but he is loyal, friendly and kind. However, Trigger’s most noticeable trait is that he is stupid beyond belief, which is a source of much humour in the show, despite his remaining deadly serious in his delivery. Del has often commented on Trigger’s painfully low intelligence; “You could tell the state our school was in; Trigger was head boy.” Another example is in one episode, Del had relationship problems with Raquel and a very bad tooth. Whilst talking about the problems with Raquel, Trigger confused the subjects, advising him to just “get shot of it,” and proceeding to say, “I know what it’s like, you give ’em pet names, I’ve done it, but take my advice, go to the dentist and have it taken out.”
Trigger did not know his father and in all seriousness says “he died a couple of years before I was born” when Rodney asks of his whereabouts in the episode “Ashes to Ashes”. He was brought up by his grandparents, with his grandfather having also been a roadsweeper. When Trigger is pushed by Boycie to say who his mother had written down on the birth cerificate as Trigger’s father Trigger says, reluctantly, “Some soldiers”. Trigger is unsurprisingly not married, although he occasionally mentions past relationships during the series and is seen on a blind date with a woman in the 1988 Christmas special, Dates.
In the episode Heroes and Villains, Trigger wins an award for owning the same broom for 20 years. He reveals that it has had 17 new heads and 14 new handles, but insists it is still the same broom. This has given rise to the expression “Trigger’s broom” (the Ship of Theseus paradox).
On several occasions, however, despite his general stupidity, Trigger has displayed some moments of cleverness, given his smart remarks and rather intelligent way of explaining the situation of his pregnant niece in the episode The Frog’s Legacy.” (from Wikipedia)
In honour of both the actor and the character he became renowned for, the Half-Eaten Mind presents a video gallery of Trigger’s best moments. This is a celebration of Lloyd Pack’s acting prowess and his immense success in not only bringing Trigger to life but the fact that he developed a simple, slightly dubious character from the shadier side of town into a persona who became loved by millions.
While attending a tenants association meeting, Rodney tries to explain to Trigger that his name just is not Dave. Rodney then suddenly finds himself elected vice-chairman.
Del Boy and Trigger at the local pub, talking about ‘charming birds’. Rather than being a hit with the ladies however, Del Boy ends up hitting the bar floor.
Trigger attempts to flog some dodgy suitcase made from “olde English vinyl” to Del Boy over a pub table. Rodney isn’t having it. Also we find out the origins of Trigger’s nickname.
Rodney introduces Trigger to the finer kind of music.
Mike enlists Trigger to discover the name of Del’s baby. Classic comedy starring the late Roger Lloyd-Pack. Best known as the lovable Trigger in Only Fools and Horses, Roger Lloyd-Pack, has died aged 69.
Trigger gets an Indian independence leader confused with an actor who plays him. Trigger at his ‘dopiest’ best.
“Roger Lloyd Pack, star of Only Fools and Horses, dies aged 69” – BBC News Entertainment and Arts, BBC (16 January 2014) LINK
“Trigger (Only Fools and Horses)” – Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. LINK
“My Name is Rodney! – Only Fools and Horses – BBC” – BBC Comedy Greats, YouTube GB (29 October 2009) LINK
“Del Boy Falls Through the Bar – Only Fools and Horses – BBC” – BBC Comedy Greats, YouTube GB (25 September 2009) LINK
“Trigger’s Dodgy Briefcases – Only Fools and Horses – BBC” – BBC Worldwide, YouTube GB (7 July 2010) LINK
“Only fools and horses – Mozart” – robthegob1, YouTube GB (21 February 2007)LINK
“If it’s a boy they’re naming him Rodney… – Only Fools and Horses – Series 7 – BBC Comedy Greats” – – BBC Comedy Greats, YouTube GB (17 January 2014) LINK
“Only Fools And Horses – Trigger and Gandhi” – SuperMWake2, YouTube GB (25 September 2011)LINK
In the mid-1990’s while growing up in a modest terraced house in Plaistow, east London, I would sit down after dinner on a Saturday evening and be enamoured by the antics of two hilariously seedy gentleman living in a mucky flat in some God-forsaken part of Hammersmith. Whether it was constantly complaining about their woefully pitiful social and love lives, or booting each other in the crown jewels, this duo of stragglers, Eddie and Richie, left me in stitches with their smutty jokes and slapstick comedy routines. The fact that this programme was simply called “Bottom” gives you an idea of how risqué the comedy featured on it was. Although the condom vending machine skits and numerous whiny complaints about not being able to “do it” may rub some people up the wrong way, I looked beyond the seaside postcard humour and discovered a hallmark example of relatable comedy going ‘back-to-basics’. Nearly two decades after the last episode was aired, I still regard Bottom as one of the finer pieces of modern British televised comedy, something which seems impossible to reproduce now.
Eddie and Richie were lovable rogues. Laddish to the core and brimming with old-school Cockney swagger (but with posher accents), they were easy-ish to relate to, if you were a man that is. If you happened to be a woman, then Bottom was your crash course in how to avoid sweaty-faced bald weirdos begging to buy you a drink in the local, while serenading you with sordid chat-up lines like “That’s a smashing blouse you’re wearing”. They were so close to each other, they seemed almost like a couple – Eddie the perpetually drunk husband, Richie the stay-at-home wife with his constant verbal nonsense and houseproud habits. Every other hour though, marital bliss would be blissfully shattered as they commenced smashing seven shades of faecal matter out of each other. You easily could have thought of them as a pair of “sad desperate plonkers” – crusty societal rejects with a overinflated self-entitlement in the sacred arts of scoring birds and appreciating quintessentially English pursuits – at least in Richie’s case. At the same time, they were too funny and familiar to hate, and the characters grew on you to the point, where you found yourself involuntary quoting lines like ” Okey dokey smokey donkey me old china” while gossiping over the office water cooler.
After I saw Bottom in my school days (I was surprised my mum even allowed me to watch it at all, but then she would make a good supporting character in there) I moved on and largely forgot about it. Then my friend at work began showing me snippets of episodes he had downloaded onto his iPod and memories of Eddie Elizabeth Hitler and Richard Richard Esq. soon came flooding out faster than Eddie’s vomit post-sneaked-in bottle of cheap Scotch. Last year I managed to get hold of a torrent someone made of the official Bottom DVD boxset…and the rest is history.
Bottom was a UK comedy television series that was broadcast on terrestrial channel BBC2 from 1991 to 1995. Set in Hammersmith, west London, its main characters were Eddie Hitler (played by Ade Edmondson) and Richard Richard (played by Rik Mayall). Edmondson and Mayall were long-established comedians who had previously appeared in comedy show “The Young Ones” in the early 1980s. Richie and Eddie are two flatmates who live on the dole in a rundown flat above a newsagent’s opposite a kebab shop.
The programme ran for three series and included a series of live tours of the comedy routine and even a feature film ” Guest House Paradiso “. The show was noted for its nihilistic, chaotic humour and its emphasis on traditional slapstick, with moderately violent and sexual overtones. In 2008, Bottom came at number 45 in a public vote on ‘ Britain’s Best Sitcom’ by the BBC.
Here’s a summary of the show for those not familiar with it, as provided by Wikipedia.
Eddie and Richie are two crude, perverted lunatics, with no jobs, very little money and only a filthy flat in Hammersmith (located at “11, Mafeking Parade”) to their name. The two spend their time coming up with desperate schemes to acquire s**, attacking each other violently, and getting into dodgy situations. Bottom is considered the most violent example of britcom, examples of violence include teeth being knocked out, heads crushed in fridge doors, fingers being cut off, penises set on fire, legs being chainsawed off, forks shoved in eyes, pencils forced up noses, poison being drunk, legs broken and faces shoved in campfires.
Richie is a clumsy, pompous dimwit who attempts to make himself out as being much higher in social status than he actually is, and is both deranged and desperate, as well as being obsessed with s**. Eddie, a cheerfully violent drunkard, meanwhile spends his time getting drunk and wasting the dole money and secretly steals Richie’s family heirloom, although he occasionally has moments of demented genius. Eddie’s friends—the gormless Spudgun and Dave Hedgehog—both fear Richie, thinking he’s psychotic. Although the pair sometimes venture out (the most common location being the local pub, the Lamb and Flag), many of the episodes are set simply within the confines of the pair’s squalid flat.
I have watched all the episodes from first to last at least twice now in the past year, and honestly it’s one of the best laughs I have had in years. Bottom was a landmark example of British comedy at its finest…and crudest. Though the jokes seemed smutty and childish at times, they worked with maximum effect. Both me and my mate have always wanted Rik and Ade to start a new series, updated for the 21st century, but it’s a wish which may or may not come true sadly.
The Half-Eaten Mind, in this special tribute article and homage to one of this country’s comic jewels, has put together a YouTube gallery and selection of quotes from some of the best bits and scenes from Bottom. We hope you enjoy these select cuts of fine Nineties’ comedy at its best. You’ll probably laugh so hard, you will end up in Accident and Emergency with a bruised bottom. You have been warned!
Videos are rated 15+ and are the property of the BBC.
The opening credits….(posted by “TelevisionOpenings”)
Richie gets it in the eye, Eddie gets the cold hard (forged) cash – from the third series (posted by cookieoffender)
The Chess Fight!!! (Robert G. Houston)
Bottom – The Hobnob Fight (Robert G. Houston)
Halloween Banana (BBCComedyGreats)
Ritchie falls down stairs making a TV programme (ooosaeed)
Best of BBC show ‘Bottom’ series 3 (Oliver Harper)
[Facing imminent death]
Eddie: You know, I think I might come back as a bra.
Richie: You know mate, if we ever get through to the other side of this one, if we ever get back to Blighty, I’m really gonna change the way I live… find a piece of land, find a beautiful woman, hell, maybe even raise a few kids
Eddie: Aaaah quit dream’n skip, we’re never going to pull through to the other side of this one
Richie: No you’ve got to dreeeeam Eddie. You’ve got to hold on to the dreeeeeam!