Richard Lumsden has kindly shared his memories of playing Foggy:
- How did you come to be cast in the series?
Through an audition arranged by my agent. It was my first tv casting and I dressed up in period clothes and did the meeting in a Yorkshire accent hoping they would think it was authentic. At the end of the interview I left via the wrong door, accidentally bashing it into my face, which probably didn’t do me any harm.
- How did you go about emulating Brian Wilde’s performance as Foggy? Did you meet him?
I’d enjoyed seeing him in LOTSW and Porridge, and used those to try and capture his voice & mannerisms. I only met Brian once very briefly after we had shot the first series. He was very shy and very charming.
- Which locations did you film at and what are your memories of location filming?
I remember all of us having a blast in Huddersfield. Lots of very late nights in Johnny’s nightclub. Being from Derbyshire I’ve always loved a good mountain, so filming up in the Dales was a delight.
- What are your memories of studio filming?
I only did a few episodes in the tv centre in Shepherds Bush as most of my scenes were out on location in Yorkshire. Working at tv centre was bizarre as the building felt strangely familiar from a childhood spent watching Blue Peter, Record Breakers, etc.
- Can you tell us a bit more about the costumes, sets and vehicles used?
There was Seymour’s three-wheeler that kept breaking down. I can vouch that the 1945 infantry uniform was not at all comfy to wear, and the sets were amazing – walking into the shop, and house interiors was like stepping back in time.
- Foggy’s mishaps, from going camping to seeing a dead body, formed the basis of many plots. Were these fun to film?
I liked to grab the opportunity for some physical comedy wherever possible, so they were a lot of fun to film. Mike Stephens (the director) would say, “The episode’s running a few minutes short. What if you try and put the campfire out with your foot and your shoe catches fire?”. The stunt co-ordinator would fix me up with a safety suit under the costume and Mike would let the camera roll for a minute or two… (Don’t try this at home kids!)
- What are your memories of working with the older cast members? Peter Sallis, Maggie Ollerenshaw, Derek Benfield.
They were rude, bitter, unfunny… Of course I’m joking – they could not have been more helpful. Peter & Maggie were always inspiring to work with. Derek ruled the shop with a firm stick. Then there was Joe Belcher as the terrifying Picture House Kommandant (I think), as well as the gorgeous Linda Beckett as Foggy’s mum, who’d turn up with a picnic when the boys were out on ‘manoeuvres’.
- Do you keep in touch with any of the cast?
I’ve just been working in Belfast this year with Judy Flynn while filming a new series for the BBC. I always kept in touch with Paul Pearce, the manager at the Huddersfield Hotel where we (& the LOTSW cast) all stayed. Paul was a true legend in the area, very popular, with a wicked sense of humour. He’d look after everybody and was a huge part of the whole Summer Wine family. Tragically Paul died way too young in 2013, though if he was writing this he’d probably make a joke about it.
- Do you have a favourite memory and/or favourite episode?
The Huddersfield Hotel could probably tell a few tales… I enjoyed The Way of The Warrior episode where Foggy stands up to local bully Chunky Livesey – and fails. And I loved the end of the series when World War Two breaks out during Dilys’ wedding and the future suddenly looks very bleak.
- What have you been doing since FOTSW ended?
After Summer Wine finished I worked on another Roy Clarke series ‘Sharp End’ with Gwen Taylor, James Cosmo & Gaynor Faye, playing a dodgy two-timing skinhead called Nutter. I’ll always be grateful to Roy for giving me my first tv roles. Other favourite tv shows over the years include Sugar Rush, Is It Legal, Wonderful You & feature films like Sense & Sensibility & last year’s indie cult hit Downhill (www.downhillthemovie.com). If they decide to remake Last Of The Summer Wine now I’d almost be the right age to play the older Foggy, which comes as something of a shock.
Many thanks to Richard for providing this contribution and supporting the site.
Richard’s website is www.richardlumsden.com