Dads’ Army with­out Ian Lavender? Un­think­able

Harefield Gazette - - OPINION -

IAM sorry, but tele­vi­sion chiefs will have to ban any more show­ings of my favourite po­lit­i­cal sit­com. The other day I was in the area that is home to the Houses of Par­lia­ment and (sev­eral times) heard it called ‘West­min-is-ter’.

This got me think­ing about the Dads’ Army episodes, which are com­ing back.

Did they ever go away, you ask? Aha, but not as reruns this time.

A cast of age­ing ac­tors is lin­ing up to shoot a new ver­sion of the 1970s Sec­ond World War com­edy.

I was sorry to hear that Ian Lavender, who played the young Pike, is not in­cluded. Couldn’t he have played his own fa­ther or grand­fa­ther this time around?

Ian went to the same school as me in Birm­ing­ham but as the boys and girls were caged in sep­a­rate build­ings, we didn’t share any drama lessons.

I do re­mem­ber see­ing him in Pyg­malion, though, at the boys’ school, play­ing Pro­fes­sor Hig­gins. He was ex­cel­lent. Shame he will al­ways be re­mem­bered as dopey Pike.

One ac­tress who can def­i­nitely take a bow is Anne Ger­rard (a mem­ber of Prosce­nium The­atre Company), who took over a part at short no­tice in Rel­a­tively Speak­ing at the Com­pass The­atre last week.

She had to take a script on stage, but did such a good job that we for­got she was read­ing her lines.

It is very dif­fi­cult to han­dle props while not bump­ing into the fur­ni­ture or los­ing your place on the page. I’m in awe.

Well done also to the Beck The­atre for bring­ing fab folk group Show of Hands to Hayes. We are very lucky to have them here as they have sold out the Royal Al­bert Hall four times and are triple win­ners at the BBC Ra­dio 2 Folk Awards. Catch them if you can on Mon­day, Novem­ber 17 at 7.30pm. TALK­ING of show­ing your hand, Rus­sell Brand, who re­gards him­self as in­tel­li­gent, says proudly that he has never voted. I sug­gest he goes to live in a dic­ta­tor­ship, like North Korea. Then, when he finds he prefers our free­dom of speech (which he cer­tainly makes good use of), he will un­doubt­edly back our sys­tem which – pay at­ten­tion Brand! – needs vot­ers to keep it afloat.

As jour­nal­ist and film-maker Michael Moore once said: “Democ­racy is not a spec­ta­tor sport.’ It should be tat­tooed on our fore­heads at birth.

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