Roy Hudd

Roy ex­plains why he’s not a fan of cars – and why he never passed his driv­ing test!

YOURS (UK) - - Contents -

Some friends of mine, and some who aren’t, con­stantly ac­cuse me of liv­ing in the past. Rub­bish! says I.

OK, so nearly all the songs I know were first sung by Al­bert and Vic­to­ria and my favourite dance is the min­uet. I en­joy a haunch of veni­son for my Sun­day din­ner (I leave the antlers for the dogs), I hand­write let­ters with a quill pen and find Bar­bara Cart­land’s books far too raunchy for my del­i­cate taste but… I am in the process of in­vest­ing in a bi­cy­cle in keep­ing with to­day’s ob­ses­sion with ex­er­cise (a penny far­thing of course). I spend my time think­ing about hol­i­days, long­ing to re­turn to Tresco – a Scilly is­land where get­ting around is bless­edly car free. Me and cars have never got on. I have owned a few but have never sat be­hind the steer­ing wheel of any of them. In my youth, my con­stant quest to im­press the ladies stirred me to think about driv­ing. I’d al­ways taken my fe­male friends home on the bus (well I did so en­joy the clip-clop of the horses) but most of the girls were just dy­ing to be whisked away in a mas­cu­line model T.

I did have one les­son; af­ter ask­ing the teacher, ”Where is the per­son who’s sup­posed to walk in front with the red flag?” (I only said that to get a laugh. It didn’t!) the grim-faced in­struc­tor pressed some sort of but­ton and it started. We moved and soon we were mer­rily bowl­ing along a coun­try lane. Oh the thrill of it. “This is more like it,” I shouted, as a herd of very old cows and a three­legged dachs­hund over­took us. Open­ing his eyes the in­struc­tor sug­gested, “You can go a bit faster you know.” “No thank you,” I said through grit­ted teeth with the wind ruf­fling my hair. “You’re go­ing less than 12 miles an hour,” was his com­ment. “Quite fast enough,” I snapped and si­lence pre­vailed for an­other 12 miles. The in­struc­tor sank lower in his seat so no one could see he was with me. His im­pa­tient, con­stantly re­peated, “Gawd ‘elp us!” forced me to de­clare, “I tell you what. Why don’t we change places and you drive me home?”

He was in the driv­ing seat faster than a Kwik Fit fit­ter and I tried to look like his teacher. He was a good driver and we were out­side my digs in 30 sec­onds flat. I got out my wal­let to pay him but, as he ran down the road, on the wind came a sti­fled cry, “On the house!” My first and last driv­ing les­son was over. Some­times, when I tell that em­bar­rass­ing truth, a doubter will say, “Not true. I’ve seen you be­hind the wheel of a car on the telly.” Then I re­veal they usu­ally put me in a car on a trol­ley to cre­ate the il­lu­sion that I am a right Lewis Hamil­ton. “In the Den­nis Pot­ter film Karaoke, I had to be seen driv­ing Al­bert Fin­ney around. I steered while Al­bert, sit­ting next to me, changed gear, stopped and started and did all the proper car things. What a trooper. So you see I don’t live in the past – I live for ev­ery day ‘cos my mis­sus Deb­bie loves driv­ing and, while she does, I sit knit­ting and back­seat driv­ing. Home please, Deb­bie!

‘Me and cars have never got on. I’ve owned a few but never sat be­hind the steer­ing wheel of any of them’

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.