Need a good brickie? Just give my mate Prince Wil­liam a call

Daily Mail - - Television -

Come the rev­o­lu­tion, brothers and sis­ters, the Royal Fam­ily will be first up against the wall — that was the clar­ion catch­phrase of Wolfie, rev­o­lu­tion­ary leader of the Toot­ing Pop­u­lar Front, in Cit­i­zen Smith.

Well, here’s news for Wolfie. To judge by DIY SOS: Gren­fell (BBC1), give them a wall and the Roy­als will make a pretty good job of it.

Prince Wil­liam turned up at the half-built boxing gym un­der a dual car­riage­way bridge in West Lon­don, grabbed a paint roller and started slap­ping on the emul­sion. He looked com­pletely at home. maybe it’s all the ren­o­va­tions they’ve been do­ing at Kens­ing­ton Palace.

or maybe it’s the Wind­sors’ emer­gency plan: if the Luvvies and the Lefties ever com­bine to oust Her majesty and fam­ily, the Firm will turn their en­er­gies to loft ex­ten­sions and kitchen re­furbs.

Af­ter all, europe is full of des­ti­tute aris­to­crats and ex­iled princes, in debt up to their tiaras. But you’ve never seen a starv­ing plas­terer, have you?

I’d hap­pily hire the Duke and Duchess of Cam­bridge to retile our bath­room. Wills got straight to work, with­out spending 20 min­utes on his mo­bile to dis­cuss an­other job. And he didn’t dis­ap­pear to ‘just fetch some­thing from the van’ and show up three days later.

In fact, all the builders on this Gren­fell project, the first of two, de­serve medals — not only for get­ting the work com­pleted on time but for do­nat­ing all their labour and skills. Faced with a near im­pos­si­ble task, to con­struct a world- class gym­na­sium on a tight plot of dis­used land un­der the West­way in North Kens­ing­ton, they went to work with pro­fes­sional de­ter­mi­na­tion.

There was lit­tle room for the larks of pre­sen­ter Nick Knowles and his band of hi- viz clowns. Daffy labourer Billy staged a boxing match with a lo­cal lad, world su­per- mid­dleweight champion Ge­orge Groves, but most of the work­ers were too busy to take much no­tice.

Ge­orge is an old boy of the gym, the Dale Youth Boxing Club, which had moved in to a new home at Gren­fell Tower just seven weeks be­fore the hor­rific fire. Among the young­sters who treated the club as a sec­ond home were many who lost friends and fam­ily in the in­ferno.

one reg­u­lar, a teenager named Luana, es­caped from the 21st floor only to be placed in an in­duced coma be­cause of smoke poi­son­ing. She and all the com­mu­nity de­served this gym. much more than a ges­ture, it was proof of tele­vi­sion’s power to unite peo­ple and make Bri­tain a bet­ter place.

Corona­tion Street’s DNA Se­crets (ITV) was unit­ing peo­ple in a dif­fer­ent way, as it un­picked the ge­netic his­tory of the stars and worked out who their an­ces­tors were.

Un­sur­pris­ingly, half the cast were Lan­cashire lads and lasses since time im­memo­rial. Quite a few were re­lated: Sally Ann matthews, who plays Jenny Bradley, and Amanda Bar­rie (she who was Alma Sedgewick), were fourth cousins. Their great-great-greats used to live on the same old­ham street, Cor­rie-style.

The ac­tors gath­ered in the Rover’s Re­turn to hear the re­sults, and pre­tended to be de­lighted when in­tro­duced to soap fans who shared their DNA. That seems to take stalk­ing to an un­com­fort­able new level: it’s one thing to want an au­to­graph, quite an­other to claim kin­ship.

The same thought oc­curred to Amanda and Sally Ann. ‘Now I’m so old,’ mused the 82-yearold miss Bar­rie, ‘you might have or­gans to spare.’

‘You’re not hav­ing a kid­ney,’ re­torted her cast-mate. ‘I might buy you a cup of tea.’

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