Just a quick post to let everyone know that it was another great weekend There's some good photos of the locations that will be uploaded in due course. Some people stopped over Sunday night so it's going to take a while for the reports to come in.
I've had the day to reflect on another fantastic meet, expertly draughted as ever by the Guv. I got there nice an early on Saturday, or at least I thought so but not early enough it seems as Gene & Mr Steed had already departed to the local hostelry, which was not ready for them, "ha'way Arthur!" That was to be a recurring theme for the weekend - pub after pub was simply not ready ready to receive 17 or so thirsty souls, the look was always the same - like a deer caught in the headlights!
Once the squad were duly assembled, we set off for the first leg of a double handed weekend trip down memory lane. Into the early spring sun we headed, we knew not where as Gene had kept this part a closely guarded secret. Highlights for me included the site of the Extralite sales pitch - "‘into the light… shining bright… up your nose, fresh as a rose" and Bob & Thelma's house from the 1976 Likely Lads film. The afternoon session finished at The Manor, Elstree which was the site of "Randall & Hopkirk, Deceased", "School For Scoundrels" & "A Clockwork Orange" to name but a few. Before heading into the hotel, we got a taste of the weekend's main feature by taking in the site of the Motorbike & Sidecar jump from "On The Buses", a truly great piece of detective work by Gene to nail this. Appetite whetted for the main event, it was off into Potters Bar to scare more landlords
Sunday arrived with a frost but the skies were blue and we set off for breakfast before heading out on another 4:3 trip into the golden age of British film and TV. Borehamwood is rich in this regard. Within a few 100 metres, we had seen Bob drop brick ("not my fault Thelma, it's not my fault"), see him lament the passing of another of his childhood memories while he looked out over a "north east" building site, seen Dennis kiss goodbye to Vera and the kids as Alan whisked them away in his Capri, seen the where the Butler's kept the sidecar and observed the brickies hard at it on a German building site. Not a bad start the to the day!
We spent the next few hours following Stan, Jack, Arthur & Olive around the Hertfordshire countryside, all with our very own Blakey in tow, urging the drivers to "get this bus out" There was also the chance to take in the site of Hadrians Rest as used in the Likely Lads film, sadly no longer standing but still a real thrill for me nonetheless.
As usual, our antics always get the curtains twitching and a couple of times, those behind them ventured out to see what was going on. Again, as is customary, once we explained they were more than happy to discuss further and on one occasion the owners of the small stable yard where Stan crashed his bus gave us a little insight on the actual filming of the event, very interesting too and proof that these films have an enduring quality.
As is always the case on these meets, the weekend is over all too quickly and thoughts already turn to the next one. Before then though, there are lots of memories to look back upon until we're back with boys again.
It just remains to say thanks to all of those on the meet. I think I spoke to everyone and everyone was very welcoming and gave their time freely and enthusiastically. Special thanks to Carter for being a great wheelsman, shame the same cannot be said for my navigating! Thanks also to John Steed, Stan & DC Burtonshaw for your company & banter in the motor as we ate up the miles.
I'd like to say what a sport Del Boy, our very own Blakely is. You took on this role with aplomb mate and kept it going all day and took a right soaking in the dish for the the squad, this has to be your best yet, take a bow
Last but by no means least, thanks Gene for organising another top meet. Getting new locations and striking the right balance of walking/driving/pubs is not easy (I'd say almost impossible) but again, this was spot on. Keep the Likely Lads locations coming mate Hope you have a well deserved break before planning meet 009!!! You'll have to go some to beat this one.
The 8th 4:3tv Meet was, to put it as simply as possible, one of the best ever Meets that I have been on. Huge thanks to Gene for taking the Forum on the road once again, and directing us to locations familiar from our best loved omnibus based comedy films. The quality of the locations was truly extraordinary and I doff my hat to your expert knowledge on the subject.
Highlight of the weekend was Del Boy as the over officious Blakey – your funniest characterisation yet mate. The likeness was uncanny and the reenactments were hilarious.
I’ve never been to the Elstree area before, so the walkabout was a real eye opener for me as Gene revealed location after location at virtually every corner along a well-planned route. Plenty of pub stops on the way provided an opportunity for refreshment and relaxation in the amicable company of the Forum members. I really appreciate the good nature that lies at the heart of these Meets, and it was a pleasure to meet everybody again.
Thanks to Peter Picard for the lift to all the locations on both Saturday and Sunday, and thanks to Vienna for successfully navigating the route. Thanks also to Charles Bronson for being great company in the car down to South Mimms and back – the journey flew by.
An absolutely epic Meet. Thanks Gene
I'm going to say this once, and once only Gene. Stay out of Camberwick Green!
What a fantastic weekend the "On The Buses Meet" was. It started for me at just before 9am on Saturday when I arrived at Gene Hunt's house to get a lift down to the meet. That lovely sports car of yours certainly eats up the miles Guv … we seemed to get down to the meet in no time! We even had to wait for the first pub to open! A most enjoyable afternoon on Saturday with plenty of bonus locations and a few pub stops for liquid refreshment. Saturday evening was most enjoyable with yet more liquid refreshment and a nice meal too. Plenty of banter/laughs made for a brilliant evening which passed by way too quick! Sunday morning was an early start for breakfast before heading off for plenty more top locations. A few more pub stops to refuel along the way made for a relaxed, fun day again. Before we knew it Sunday's excellent itinerary was completed and it was time for our final pit stop. As with Saturday, the time just flew by. A few hours kip and it was Monday morning and time to head home.
Thanks very much Gene for the endless hours of work you put into planning these meets with military precision; the attention to detail amazes me and I am sure it amazes the rest of the squad too. Del …. you were such a good sport with your portrayal of Blakey for the day; non-stop entertainment which also amused members of the public and even a bus driver! Thanks to Carter for driving us about both days and also thanks to Stan, Steve Austin and DC Burtonshaw for great conversation/banter in the car. Finally, thanks to everyone who attended the meet and collectively made it the fantastic weekend that it was. Roll on the next meet!!
If you don't know where you're going, any road will take you there.
It was, once again, yet another brilliant meet organised by forum guvnor Gene Hunt. This particular one has to be my favourite thus far as it was often hilarious at times, especially with Del Boy dressed as Blakey - brilliant entertainment from you there, Derek!
The weekend got underway when Peter Picard and I arrived in South Mimms at lunchtime and quickly met up with the Saturday meet attendees at the hotel. We then headed to the White Horse in Shenley for the first of the 'bonus locations' scheduled for the day by Gene. I had been here before to look at stuff from a 1960s horror film and it was great to be back for the On the Buses finds. After a pint or two in the White Horse we headed off to other places of interest... the location highlight of the day for me was Bob and Thelma's house from the Likely Lads film, actually located in Bushey near Watford. We also decided on having a drink at the Laura Ashley Manor Hotel (formely known as the Edgwarebury) in Elstree, which featured in several TV shows and the 1968 horror film 'The Devil Rides Out'. It was then time to drive back to the hotel for a quick wash and then a walk over to South Mimms and Ridge for the evening meal and a few jars. Being a lightweight drinker these day, though, I went back to the hotel a little bit earlier for some much needed kip...
Despite a freezing start to Sunday morning, the sun had his hat on and we set off for Borehamwood to meet the Sunday members and have some breakfast at the Hart and Spool. We then started our On the Buses walkabout looking at several locations from the two films; I also had to explain to a resident why I was standing outside her house - but she was OK when I explained my suspicious behaviour to her! After a liquid lunch at the White Hart Inn back in South Mimms, we got back into our cars and went to seek out some more locations around Shenley and Borehamwood, including the amusing motorbike and sidecar scenes. Blakey getting soaked at the bus stop was the afternoon highlight, with Del actually getting a bucket of water chucked at him to recreate the scene from the two films - brilliant stuff for a Sunday afternoon! We eventually ended up at the laundrette location and then headed back to the pub for a decent Sunday roast dinner and some more ale before, sadly, it was all over for another six months.
As always, a big thanks to everyone who attended and made it such an enjoyable weekend, particularly Del Boy for his Blakey impressions; Peter Picard who kindly picked me up from Codsall station on Saturday and drove (very carefully) down to Hertfordshire; back seat passengers Windy Miller and Charles Bronson for their company during the driving parts; also Steve Austin for his printing skills. The biggest thanks - as always - goes to Gene. His fabulous knowledge and research into these locations, along with all his hours of hard work is amazing!
I'll hopefully load a few smudges in a few days time. Anyway, roll on the next 4:3tv meet in October...
The 'permissive society' doesn't exist. I know, I've looked for it - Rupert Rigsby