David Fenwick has kindly shared his memories of playing Clegg:


  1. How did you come to be cast in the series?

My agent at the time was what they call a cooperative, so it was group of actors together and I was the youngest one there.  So I saw information coming in for what people were casting at the time and I saw it and I set myself up for it by writing a letter supposedly from my agent, saying as you can see David is very similar to a young version of Peter Sallis, which is absolute rubbish because I didn’t look anything like him and I’m way taller than him, etc etc.  But because I knew I could do silly voices and silly accents, which is what I still do now, I just set myself up for it and suddenly a week later I was being seen for it.  And they were doing a bit of a Scarlett O’Hara, it was everywhere, they were in London and in Leeds and Manchester seeing all the northern actors for all the parts.  I think I was the first person to be cast in it.  I went up for it for the recall on the Friday and I said I don’t know if I’m getting this right but I’m doing a bit of a sound of Peter Sallis and they looked at me, great.  That was on Friday and by the time I got back to my agent’s office the secretary rang and they said I’m not supposed to ring you until Monday but you’ve got the part and that’s how it happened. 

  1. How did you go about emulating Peter Sallis’ performance as Clegg?

I didn’t know Peter was going to be in it at the point of my audition, I don’t think it was talked about at that stage.  Obviously later on when I did the pilot, I then met him for the first time in Yorkshire and I was a bit worried he would think I was taking the mickey of his voice.  In fact he was wonderful, brilliant, bit scary but he was brilliant.  Because it was a very scary time because the pilot, which I loved, was all on film and I was in virtually every scene, so for a 23 year old which I was at the time when I’d only been doing small telly parts, it was quite a daunting thing to do.  It was made like a movie, it was I think the highest budget pilot that BBC TV had ever done, I think it cost over a million quid, because it was all on film and it was directed as a movie, with no audience etc.  All the studio bits in the pilot are done at EMI Studios, which is just outside Manchester.  So it was a proper film set, rather than a TV studio set.

Also everything on location, TV aerials were taken down and long shots like some special effect man, say you’d got a chimney or something in the background, a factory chimney which would only be seen half a mile away in a shot, a man would be there so fire would come out of the top of that chimney, such attention to detail, it was amazing.  And for the pilot, all the tramway stuff was originally done at Beamish, up near Newcastle, so the seamless bit of getting on the tram at Beamish Museum and then getting off it at the cinema, which is Hyde Park Cinema in Leeds, was kind of seamless, looking like all one place.  And in fact the streets, the rubber streets, were all cast from the cobbles at Beamish Museum, so they were rubber and they unrolled them on the back on the big trucks, so the Post Office, the shop, where the Co-op is, during the week it’s a little Post Office in Netherthong and then on a Sunday which was there only day when they weren’t working, they’d transform that into the Co-op, putting false walls up and unravelling these rubber streets, and then little men would put horse manure and dirt in the side of it and I’d walk down the hill with a strange squeak because it was rubber and then later on they would put the footsteps on.

So all the Co-op stuff was filmed on a Sunday, so that was quite a long day.  So what we would do when we got to do the series, each series we would do four weeks on location on film and then we’d do six weeks in the studio with a live audience on a Sunday night.  So after all the filming, which was about half of what each episode was, which was fairly rare because most sitcoms only have a tiny bit of film and most of it was studio, then we would come into the TV Centre and rehearse it during the week and then we’d have dress rehearsal on a Sunday afternoon and a live audience on a Sunday night.  Then we’d go up to the BBC bar and meet all the other people who were doing their shows that night like Bread, I’d mix with all my mates on Bread at the BBC bar after it.  It was a bit like doing a theatre show on a Sunday night.  

  1. Clegg is a subtler character than many of his friends but central to the telling of the stories.  Did this make it a harder role to play? Was it a help or an added pressure having Peter Sallis in the series too?

I think, and I might be completely wrong, but because it was called the Diary of Norman Clegg, each episode starts with that, I think that would kind of be Roy Clarke, that would be the voice of Roy Clarke.  So it’s the writer, so Clegg is kind of studying all these other people and writing about them.   The Diary of Norman Clegg, aged 18 years, Compo Simmonite…so it’s little stories of what Clegg remembered ala Roy Clarke.  I think I only met Roy once, which was at the casting originally.  I don’t think I ever met him again.  Most of it was done through the original director, who was Gareth Gwenlan who was Head of Comedy at the time, I loved him, he was my kind of Svengali, but he couldn’t do the series, because he was doing A Fine Romance, or was it the other one with Judi Dench.  So we had a different director and producer for the series.

Peter helped a bit especially in the studios, he didn’t come on location, because he was doing the Last Of series and he was on location quite a long time doing that, he didn’t want to be on the location of ours as well.  So he kind of tended to do more of the studio stuff which was back in London, so he didn’t have to travel up to Huddersfield.

Having Peter there was a bit of both, a help and an added pressure.  I was very daunted at first but I felt that he was quite happy with what I was doing and kind of left me to my own devices, and kind of expected me to.  So we kind of had fun, but we weren’t like bezzie mates.

I already knew him from Last Of, by that time it had been going, I remember talking to him in a hallway of a house in Holmfirth saying I think he’d already done it for like 14 years by then, or even 17 years something like that.  It was a long time to have done that and be doing ours as well. 

  1. Which locations did you film at and what are your memories of location filming?

The strange thing of course was, we were all smoking, which I think is kind of a bit bizarre on the DVD you get “warning smoking is in this programme”,  like it’s kind of X certificate movie but everybody did in those days and off course in the 30’s everybody did. So the weirdest thing was going to Hyde Park cinema and there was all smoking inside the cinema which was very odd.

The locations were beautiful, I mean, like Netherthong I said was the village where the Co-op was.  The back of the cinema was the back of the Huddersfield Hotel, where we all stayed, which was run by Johnny and Joe Marsden.  They owned the Huddersfield Hotel and Johnny and Joe’s Wine Bar and about three restaurants.  They loved showbizland and all the Last Of people stayed there and all the First Of people stayed there.  We were all on the walls in the bar and I think they liked that kind of touching of celebrity you know.  So they’re quite an interesting pair.  In fact I went up there about 10 years ago and unfortunately it’s all closed down now, the whole hotel.  But that’s where you see those pictures, outside the Huddersfield Hotel. So the back of the cinema, was just round the corner from where the hotel was.

The rest of it really was right on the moors, right up at the top, which was weather wise unbelievable, in Yorkshire the rain and sun and snow changes within a few minutes.  There was one where we were pulling the caravan, and I was wearing woollen trousers, woollen jacket, a jumper and thick shirt, which was all handmade by the way, that looked so ragamuffin, it cost over a £1000 handmade for me, from Berman and Sons.  And it was so hot, it was August, so I said, do you mind if I take my jacket off and may be the tank top, but I just took the jacket off, which was a thick woollen jacket, because we were pulling this caravan, and I put it over my shoulder and of course it had to match up as well, so the next day when we went back to that location it was like degrees below and I was wearing just a shirt and no jacket, freezing my butts off.  That’s the weather in Yorkshire, you never knew whether it would rain, pour it down or whatever, and trying to match it up and make it all look beautiful countryside which is half the programme of both Last Of and First Of, is that beautiful background of Yorkshire.

  1. Can you tell us a bit more about the costumes, sets and vehicles used?  Was it fun riding in the sidecar that tipped up for the episode Quiet Wedding?

I remember one which will get me into trouble which I think was around that time I was talking about the caravan and I took my tie off, and this tie was an original period tie and I think  I left it on a wall and when we got back to the hotel my dresser completely freaked.  They did find it, obviously there was a worry it wouldn’t match up with anything else.

The costumes were amazing.  For the pilot, I think they were from the wardrobe at BBC but for the series they handmade everything and of course all the wigs that the girls wore, it was from when the BBC was, well it still is, brilliant at period you know.

The car which was used all the time, which Seymour drives, obviously was an original car and that broke down all the time, so had to be pushed quite often to get the engine running.

The sidecar was built specially for me.  It was an actual stunt because there was pressure in this thing to make it rock, it was done by the special effects team.  Actually holding on, on the long shots, was the hard bit because a gas canister was pushing it up and down all the time, but actually the close up stuff was all done on a low loader so that’s  basically you’re being towed, so it’s much safer.  But the actual long shots are quite dangerous, I don’t think you’d get away with doing it now, because we could of come off it, or Paul could have crashed the bike and that was a big clunky bike at the time, so I don’t think you could get away with doing that now.  Even things like sitting on the wall and that kind of thing you’d be stapled down, because you’d be sat on the side and could easily slide.  I think the whole health and safety thing was a bit different then.

  1. What are your memories of studio filming?

I’ll tell you a funny story that did happen, which was in my favourite episode, where Clegg is left alone in the store, and it’s called The Just Doesn’t Suit.  They all leave him alone in the Co-op and the Co-op set was this beautiful handmade wood set that they’d actually destroy after each series, and it was so beautiful, it was massive, handmade wood.  Never kept it, they’d just destroy and remake it.  The beautiful cans and the original features which were in the Co-op in the studio at TV Centre, the original Heinz cans and whatever, well the dummies in the wardrobey bit where they make the suits were heavy plaster, as would have been original.  They weren’t plastic; they were really heavy, like a wall, really heavy, thick.  And live on the show you’ll see this happen and it went out, but nobody knows, so I’m telling you.  I get left alone and start messing about which is completely made up, it isn’t in the script, where I play with material or whatever, and the voiceover goes left alone in the shop, so I’m making things up as I walk around the set and the studio audience is in and I look at the dummy and it falls over and it hits me in the face, in the cheek, and that was really heavy plaster and believe me it was like somebody punching you in the face.  Anyway I carried on, put it back and I could feel my cheek swelling up, so when I go up the steps next to where Derek Benfield’s character is, the boss, I’m actually waving to somebody off set to bring ice because I could feel it getting redder and redder and redder, and swelling up.  So they got ice, and I’m just off for about a minute, and they put ice on, and I come back and do the whole scene.  When Paul was doing his solo bit in the scene, that’s when I’ve got an ice pack on.  So nothing was stopped, it all carried on, as if it was a theatre show, there were no extra takes, it was just all done, with the live audience, it was all done as a play, we didn’t really do take after take after take, because it was expensive and there were about four or five cameras you know.  Generally it was done as a show and the recording would take may be an hour and a half, like a theatre show, so it would start at 7.30. 

  1. What are your memories of working with the older cast members?  Peter Sallis, Maggie Ollerenshaw, Derek Benfield

I became very good friends with Maggie through the series and we still are.  I’ve known her for thirty years and we’re like best mates.  She’s about the only person I kept in contact with from that period, obviously because we played mother and son, you know.  But I loved, I remember the pilot was my favourite, because there’s a scene which is in the pilot film, which is done in this film studio as I said, and it’s just the two of them and the boy, me, and the sound of this clock ticking and the voiceover goes how boring Sunday afternoons were, and I certainly remember as a kid myself I hated Sunday afternoons because all you had to look forward to was having to go to school on a Monday morning, and Sundays were absolutely boring because nothing was open, all the shops  were closed, even in my days, in the 70’s when I grew up, that’s what happened on a Sunday, they were boring.  So I remember doing that scene and I had these two amazingly experience actors and by that time I felt quite relaxed about the whole thing and the camera would be really close and I’m in the middle and they’re at the sides and I just burst into laughter because it was like, you  know when you get that feeling when you’re in a church or you’re in a school in assembly and you’re not supposed to laugh, but it was the feeling of this absolute boredom, of being married for years and years and years, my character eating tinned peaches or whatever and I loved that and it just made me giggle.  I loved working with them both.  I liked the breakfast scenes which were done in the studio, they were my favourites.  The food was really good, it was proper good sausage and egg and bacon, and I’d get well into that.  Yes, the food was always quite good actually; even the chips were hot, outside the fish and chip shop.  I loved those breakfast scenes; I think they were my favourite scenes, working with them both, just the timing of them.  And my other favourite set was the real posh house; you know where they deliver the lino.  That was done at TV Centre as well and it was so beautiful and I wanted to like live in that kitchen, it was absolutely gorgeous, the design of it.

The thing I’ve just remembered about the café, what is the café in Last Of, was our fish and chip shop, so it was the same place as the external, so they changed that into the Epidemic Fisheries, which was a rather sweet crossover of both series.  It might well have been a fish and chip shop in the 30’s and 40’s, that changed into a café in the 60’s and 70’s in Last Of, and they might well have been going there all those years, in a little village like that, so I thought that was a really nice crossover.

I loved Derek Benfield.  He was staying at the hotel and we were all very young, I think I was the oldest, I think I was about 23-24, most of the others it was their first job, they were maybe 22, may be just left drama school or whatever.  So we were young kids really and Derek was staying at our hotel and I remember getting him into Johnny and Joe’s disco and pushing him to dance the night away until 3 or 4 o’clock in the morning, and then be on location for about 6.  But we were young kids, you know.  

  1. Do you keep in touch with any of the cast?

Only Maggie.  I mean through Facebook may be in the last few years, I’ve kind of written to people like the Pauls, because there’s three of them!  But not the girls and I’ve never bumped into them.  The only other person who I did keep in touch with a lot was Helen, who played Nora Batty.  Well Helen had been the year below me at drama school, so I knew her already, so we had a great friendship through doing the show obviously because we were already friends.  So I kept in touch with her for quite a long time. She became a wine merchant, a really posh wine merchant, one of the best.  And then ran a five star restaurant in the Lake District with a top award winning chef.  She was the other one I kept in touch with a lot.  She was the only one I knew beforehand, although I’d met Maggie about six months beforehand, we were kind of destined to work together because I met her in another play with another friend of mine six months before, when I was doing a job at The Royal Court, which was my second job, and then she was on set and the first time I met her was on location at the big church scene in the pilot, sitting on a wall, and she scared me then but then of course we grew to be good friends.

  1. Do you have a favourite memory and/or favourite episode?

Apart from the pilot, I loved the pilot, as I said it was like doing a movie, I think that The Just Doesn’t Suit was my favourite because I did a lot of the improvisation in it.  It was more studio based as well and I really liked working with the studio audience.

My favourite memory, I guess it would be when the pilot was on, because the pilot was shot in summer that year, June, July, whatever, it was when I had all my friends around in London in my house I had at the time, getting very drunk in the cold winter, it would have been just around Christmas, and before the days of recording, well VCRs were around you know, and we just all sat round and watched the pilot on a normal sized telly and that was really exciting, that was really, really exciting, it was like you’d made it.  And then I remember the following day, I had a massive hangover and I guess its when all the reviews would have come out and I’d arranged to do this live radio spot on Pennine Radio, which was in Bradford, and I was hungover to death and it was about 8 o’clock in the morning, when people were driving to work, and I swore several times in that interview and I think I must have been bleeped quite a bit.

Children in Need, now that was one of the best nights of my entire life!  I loved every second of it.  I got taken, limousine drove you there, all the stuff going on, I met Bill [Owen] and Peter at Terry Wogan’s hospitality suite and they I think then went to the bar, and I met the other two Pauls [Wyett and McLain].  Then we did the interview with Terry Wogan and I think they got my name wrong but it was fine.  Then I stayed  and you know when you go on the phone and take the pledges, to me that was the most exciting thing because every time I looked around there was someone famous next to me, so there were all my heroes, there was Boy George one minute, there was Valerie Singleton who was a huge kind of hero of mine as a kid, and I was oh my goodness it’s Valerie Singleton from Blue Peter, and then she’d be on the phone and like, “I just got twenty more quid because I’m sitting next to David Fenwick from First of the Summer Wine”.  And I stayed there for hours; I was just enjoying it so much.  Until one of the radio presenters, they were doing the radio at the same time, came across and said you’re one of the longest people who have sat and taken the pledges.  Then I went back in the hospitality room, it was like an amazing night, you know all the Brookside lot, the Bread lot, the Bill lot, and the West End lot.  And two friends of mine had managed to get through the four different lots of security to get into that hospitality suite, which I thought was amazing, who are non-actors.  And then we were just about to wrap it up and go home, and this would be about 12 o’clock or 1 o’clock, whenever they finish, and the two wardrobe girls went, “Oh, you’re not coming up to Terry’s private party on the top floor?” and we went, “Oh yeah, we’ll go there”.  And that was amazing on the top floor of TV Centre, his personal party, all the big stars and we stayed there until about 3 o’clock or 4 o’clock in the morning, took a couple of bottles of wine, walked across the road to where my two friends lived in Shepherd’s Bush and they’d recorded it, so then we watched it on television.  It was just the most amazing evening, it was amazing, I loved it!

I’d met Bill Owen as part of that evening, but never met any of the other Last Of cast, we never bumped into each other at all.  It was filmed at separate times of the year, so apart from Bill, I never met any of the other cast at all.  I do remember as part of the publicity campaign around the pilot, in The Daily Mirror was this massive  two page spread, centre pages, loads of photographs of us all, our pictures, some stills, “Bill Owen says”, so it looked like Bill Owen had sold this story, to his friend at The Daily Mirror, but whether that was leaked on purpose, which I would have thought by the BBC publicity department, I don’t know, but it made the centre spread of The Daily Mirror and that was just before the pilot came out.  It was complimentary.

Another highlight which I suddenly remembered was Maggie and I were a crossword puzzle clue in The Daily Mirror crossword, now that was pretty good high.  What series were David Fenwick and Maggie Ollerenshaw playing mother and son in? Just to be a crossword clue I think is pretty amazing, in a national newspaper, that was kind of cool!

Did Anita and Cleggy end up together?  I certainly wasn’t told that.  What I was told which is a little secret, was what was going to happen, well the idea was, they were all going to try to sign up for the war but none of them got in due to illnesses, like could be flat feet or heart, or whatever.  And I think the idea, which I felt was a really good idea, which I think was in Roy’s mind, was they were going to run a lighthouse, ala Dad’s Army, like the Home Guard, during 1939-1940, so it would have moved on to them running this lighthouse, as young lads running this lighthouse, so a kind of a crossover of a Dad’s Army type show, so I think that would have been kind of interesting, all failing to get in as soldiers.  But I didn’t know about the Anita thing, but Linda may be right, she might have talked to Roy.  

  1. What have you been doing since FOTSW ended?

Well I did a couple of films, I did The Krays, I played the young Dr Barnardo, and then I basically did all the soaps, did lots and lots of telly, the general stuff you do, lots of theatre, I did a great play with Sarah Miles, lots and lots of theatre, and cutting it short because you’re talking about twenty years.  I moved up to Leeds to try to get into a northern soap, which is what I wanted to do, really to try and do Emmerdale or Corrie, at that time, by the time I was 30, I just wanted to buy a big house and kind of be in something for 10 years.  I ended up doing all the soaps, I did Emmerdale three or four times, I did Corrie about two or three times, so I did the whole circuit of the northern soaps.  So I worked quite a lot and when I got to be in my forties I’d done other stuff, like we all do, as actors it’s very difficult to actually make a living, so I learnt computers and I worked for a bank and I did all kinds of officey stuff, temping stuff, because I wouldn’t have known how to use a computer, I wouldn’t have known how to type, you know I went to drama school when I was 17, I came to London when I was 16, all my things were about theatre and now you have to be so up with technology and everything.  I know a lot of actors who get jobs through Twitter.  There was a wonderful sitcom, one of my favourites, called Catastrophe, and the two writers who are the co-leads in it met through Twitter.  And certainly through Facebook I’ve met actors from 20 years ago or 30 years ago, you just would have lost touch forever with those people who suddenly find you and suddenly you get back together.  The general stuff that actors do, lots of theatre and TV, so I’ve been around, I’ve had my hand in commercials and voiceovers, yes everything, for a long time.  Radio, I think one of the best radio ones I did was on a submarine, imagine this as a radio play, it was called Close Enough to Touch, it was about the war years, and it was a real submarine in Liverpool docks with Malcolm Hebden who was in Coronation Street as Norris and an amazing cast, and it was all done for a radio play on a submarine which was amazing, so all kinds of weird stuff!

A bit of a black comedy moment when it was repeated on UK Gold about five times a day, I was at my mum’s funeral, this was in Yorkshire, and I was in this corridor and as you line up and your family’s there, and people would come up and say I saw you this morning on First of the Summer Wine and it was just really bizarre on something that had been twenty years before or fifteen years before, talking about they’d seen you in a comedy on the day of my mother’s funeral, that was very bizarre.

I think also the whole DVD release, you know everything gets put onto YouTube, everything.  Somebody is always uploading something.  You know, my first telly was in Grange Hill, I was the heroin pusher, Shane the heroin pusher, in the Just Say No Campaign, which I wasn’t allowed to be in.  That was my first telly before Summer Wine and I’m sure you can find that somewhere on YouTube, you can find everything on YouTube.  So somebody had started to upload, may be about ten years ago, whenever YouTube started and somebody had uploaded all the episodes of Summer Wine and I was like that’s really odd, and I thought this is ridiculous, I’m not making any money out of this and this is going on, maybe there is an interest in this, and there always is.  For instance I’ll give you a little story.  I was in the bank in Hackney about 5 years ago and I am quite chatty, chirpy chap, and the cash machine was not working properly in this bank, and this girl, I said it’s not working, I just talked to her and said it’s not working properly or whatever, and she just kind of smiled and I never thought anything about it.  About two months later I got a four page letter from this woman, through my agent, who said you completely made my day because I remembered being a child with my family, all five of us, sitting round on a Sunday night at 7.15 on BBC1.  And I thought that was so bizarre that something so little as talking to somebody in a bank, had had such an impact.

Another really funny one!  My parents lived on a hill in Bradford and I think it was after the pilot, I went out for a drink with my brother down the road, and I was living in London but was visiting my mum and dad, as was he, he’s older than me.  You know you can see through people’s windows as you’re walking down the road and I think it was summer , or it might be dark so everyone’s lights were on, so you can see the telly in the corner and I think one of the most bizarre things ever was me walking down this hill, looking to my left in each person’s window, which had a close up at the time of me as Clegg in Summer Wine, which was really bizarre for me, but I thought how weird it would be if they turned around and looked out of the window, so that was something that sticks in my head.

We never figured out what character Sherbet was, that was the amusing thing.  What character is he from later on?  There was a guy in Last of the Summer Wine, with a different name, who was the car mechanic guy, Wesley, so I thought maybe he’d become him, but also there was talk about he would have been the only one that died in the war, so that was may be what was talked about as well, that would have been very interesting as well if all that had been…  It did have that wonderful element, which I really like about comedies, that sadness and lightness about it.

I was disappointed that the series finished,  although I think at the time, when you’re very young and somebody says to you, we’re going to do this for 7 years, when you’re 23, you kind of go, hah, I’ll be 30, that’ll be ridiculous.  It terrified me because I was 23 and I thought I could be doing movies by the time I’m 32!  Which is all rubbish, but is what you believe when you’ve gone through drama school, etc, etc.  Now of course you go, yeah, give it me for 25 years, that’s just the way it goes, just the way life is.  But I think, this is my personal opinion, I love Roy Clarke for his other stuff and I had the most fantastic time playing that character and I would have loved to have played it more, but I think it was because of the timing of when that show was around, this is me being serious now, one of the reasons I think it got cancelled, which is nothing to do with Roy Clarke or whatever, was the timing  When you think of the late 80’s, was a change and a shift in comedy, and people were watching ‘Allo ‘Allo and commercial comedy, and the whole of comedy was changing it was becoming alternative comedy, it was becoming Ben Elton and French & Saunders, and a lot more political, and it was the Thatcher years, and comedy had to go through all that until now, we’re talking 30 years later, we’ve got Open All Hours back again, we’ve got Miranda, which is a very commercial old fashioned sitcom, but at the time those young people, in their early 20’s, political animals, would be going this is rubbish, what old people watch,  it’s not what we want, we want to watch The Young Ones, we want to watch alternative comedy, we don’t want to watch commercial comedy like this.  And I think that’s why a lot of those series went, which of course never got forgotten about but got brought back on UK Gold and whatever, why the release of this came on DVD.  So my favourite sitcom of all time is Steptoe and Son, because I think that’s the most beautiful bit of tragi-comedy you can have and I’m now watching on ITV3 in the afternoons the early mid-60s black and white versions of Steptoe and Son, and how brilliant that was.  Because now that’s come back people are going, this is genius, this is amazing.  So even with our series, Summer Wine, you can go, the quality’s so beautiful and the performances are really lovely, and it’s taken time and effort on it, it’s not been thrown together.  I think that now people kind of appreciate that and I think that’s how things have changed, but as I said it had to go through that political movement of the late 80’s and the whole of the 90’s and now coming back on itself with comedy.  And without sounding intellectual about it, that’s just what happened, and people in the early 90’s thought things like Bread, or Summer Wine, or ‘Allo ‘Allo, or Dad’s Army even, which was always classed as genius, were what their parents watched or what their grandparents watched, not what they watched, not the change, the anti-Thatcherite world was going to be.  And of course now they’ve got older and we’ve now gone back to that kind of comedy again, and now there’s room for a lot more different kinds of comedy and I watch a lot of American comedy, it fascinates me, I love it.  But I think that’s what happened at that particular time, it was 1989, 1990, and you think about what was happening comedy wise, just when alternative comedy was taking over.  I’ve always liked word comedy, I used to like Ronnie Barker in The Two Ronnies because it was word stuff, it was using the English language brilliantly, whereas slapsticky kind of humour, hitting each other over the head is childish, what a 5 year old would laugh at, not what a 25 year old would laugh at.  Same thing with the Carry On movies, they became so kind of pastiche but my best friend, has got his son, who’s about 7 or 8, into the Carry On movies, because its wordplay, double entendre, it’s clever stuff.  So comedy fascinates me in that kind of way.


Many thanks to David for providing this contribution and supporting the site.


3 thoughts on “David Fenwick on playing Clegg

  1. Audrey Blackwell says:

    If i could contact Roy Clarke i would ask him if he would make more fist of summer wine or even middle of summer wine i think you all did brilliantly and i do not think you can beat that kind of comedy,so how do i contact him?.


    1. Simon Copley says:

      It was the BBC which ended First of the Summer Wine. Roy Clarke wanted it to continue. Likewise, any other prequel series would need not only the involvement of the writer, but a TV company to commission it.


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