Wednesday 31 October 2018

Happy Birthday Pauline Peart!

The actress Pauline Peart celebrates her birthday today. Many happy returns to her. Pauline is probably best remembered for her appearance in the 1973 film, Carry On Girls. Pauline played beauty contest entrant Gloria Winch and is featured in many iconic scenes from that film, suffering for her art along with the likes of Maggie Nolan, Barbara Windsor and Valerie Leon in the climatic contest which goes so horribly wrong!

Although only a small part player in the film, the statuesque Ms Peart definitely stands out. Pauline's career came to an end by the end of the 1970s however she also appeared in the classic Hammer Horror film, The Satanic Rites of Dracula and, the year after Carry On Girls, cropped up in the big screen version of the very successful sitcom, Man About the House.

Further credits include an episode of The Galton and Simpson Playhouse, the Sean Connery film Cuba and The Firechasers. And good news for Carry On fans, as Pauline will be making a very rare public appearance at The Film and Comic Fair this December. More details can be found here    .

Whatever Pauline is up to today, I hope she has a wonderful birthday. And you can read my blog on all the other Carry On Girls here

You can follow me on Twitter @CarryOnJoan and on Instagram

Monday 29 October 2018

Happy Birthday Angela Douglas!

A very happy birthday to Carry On legend Angela Douglas who celebrates her birthday today. Angela has long been a fan favourite thanks to her sparkling performances in four classic mid-60s Carry On films and is now a very welcome presence on Twitter.

Angela has had a long and prolific career in film, on television and stage since the late 1950s. She was married to the late film actor Kenneth More (always one of my favourite actors thanks to his roles in the likes of Genevieve, Doctor in the House and Reach For the Sky) and more recently has become a writer, having published her wonderful autobiography Swings and Roundabouts.

Angela first appeared in the Carry Ons as Annie Oakley in Carry On Cowboy, released in 1965. She returned the following year for a cameo appearance as Doris Mann in Carry On Screaming, uttering the famous line "there is something in those bushes!" before she was got at by Oddbod! In 1967 Angela co-starred with Jim Dale, Kenneth Williams and guest star Phil Silvers in Follow That Camel. I love Angela as the frightfully posh Lady Jane Ponsonby - I think it might be my favourite of her roles in the Carry Ons. Her final performance in the series came the following year, as Princess Jelhi in Carry On Up The Khyber.

Angela normally worked alongside the brilliant Jim Dale in the Carry Ons. I think they had terrific chemistry together and I wish they had appeared together more often (I have a soft spot for the children's film Digby, The Biggest Dog in the World which saw them reunite several years after the Carry Ons). 

Angela Douglas made a welcome appearance in the Carry On Forever documentary earlier last year, looking wonderful and still proud of her association with the films. It was great to see her back on location in Wales where Khyber was filmed. 

I had the great pleasure of interviewing Angela earlier in 2016 and you can read that here 
Whatever Angela is up to today, I hope she has a very happy, memorable birthday. Here's to many more.

You can follow me on Twitter @CarryOnJoan 

Happy Birthday Hugh Futcher!


Today seems to be quite a day for Carry On birthdays! Following hot on the heels of Angela Douglas and Margaret Nolan is the actor Hugh Futcher, who turns 81 today. Hugh has had a long career as an actor, still popping up regularly on our screens today.

Hugh made his first appearance in the series in Carry On Spying in 1964, playing the memorable "bed of nails native" in a small scene opposite Bernard Cribbins. Further roles followed included playing a guard in Don't Lose Your Head in 1966 and a Taxi Driver in Again Doctor in 1969. Hugh probably had his biggest role in the series in 1971's Carry On At  Your Convenience, playing factory worker Ernie alongside Geoffrey Hughes.


Four more roles followed in Peter Rogers productions. He played a Car Owner in Bless This House, a Jailer alongside Alan Curtis in Carry On Abroad, a citizen in Carry On Girls and finally, in 1975, a painter in Major Leap's new clubhouse in Carry On Behind. Away from the Carry Ons, Hugh has appeared in films such as Repulsion, Rattle of a Simple Man, Anne of a Thousand Days and Quatermass and the Pit.

On television, Hugh has appeared in several well known productions including The Sweeney, Minder, Doctor Who, The Saint, Casualty and Z Cars. He was even considered for the role of the seventh Doctor in Doctor Who but accepted another role before that one progressed any further. 

Whatever Hugh is up to today, I hope he has a wonderful birthday! 

You can follow me on Twitter @CarryOnJoan 

Anita Harris in Concert at The Pheasantry

The evergreen Anita Harris will be performing in London on 29 October. The singer, well known for two Carry On appearances in the 1960s and decades of stage hits, will be appearing at The Pheasantry in Chelsea.

Anita's website describes "Anita Harris in Concert" as a wonderful cocktail of song, glitz, chat, nostalgia and humour. With musical accompaniment from her pianist and musical director, Peter Gill, Anita reveals wonderful anecdotes from her life in showbusiness, the people she has met and the places she has been. 

Anita will perform the songs that have made her into one of the country's best loved stars including Memory, Just Loving You, The Anniversary Waltz, Fly Me to the Moon, Trains and Boats and Planes, After The Ball, Burlington Bertie and many more. 

Most recently, Anita has been seen on television in reality series such as Celebrity Masterchef and Last Laugh in Vegas. She will also be appearing in the upcoming series of Midsomer Murders for ITV. 

Anita's show at The Pheasantry is on 29 October, doors at 7pm with the show beginning at 8.30pm. Tickets are £25 and you can purchase them via Anita's website:

You can follow me on Twitter @CarryOnJoan and on Instagram

Happy Birthday Margaret Nolan!


Today we're wishing the lovely Margaret Nolan a very happy birthday! Margaret has been a fixture in British film, television and stage since the early 1960s and continues to delight fans at Film Conventions to this day. 

Of course to us, Maggie will always be best remembered for her six cracking Carry On appearances. Beginning with an eye catching scene in the 1965 film Carry On Cowboy, Margaret went on to appear in Henry, At Your Convenience, Matron, Girls and finally Dick in 1974. While always playing a certain type of character - usually glamorous and a bit ditzy, there was never any doubting how talented an actor Margaret was and is.

Margaret is also well remembered for her appearance not only in the classic Bond film Goldfinger (as Dink) but also for her work as a model in the wonderful Robert Brownjohn title sequences for the film. Other film appearances have included A Hard Day's Night and No Sex Please We're British. On television she has appeared in everything from Steptoe and Son and Crossroads to Budgie and The Sweeney. Margaret also worked a great deal on television with Spike Milligan in the 1970s.


These days Margaret is back in London, after living in Spain for many years. She promotes her film work and also her work as a talented artist. You can find out more about Margaret's life and career by visiting her website here

There is also a great fan Twitter account which is certainly worth a follow and you can find that here 

Whatever Margaret is up to today, I hope she has an excellent birthday! 


You can follow me on Twitter @CarryOnJoan 

Saturday 27 October 2018

Meet Julian Holloway at the London Film Fair

The next London Film Fair will be taking place on Sunday 18th November at the Royal National Hotel, by Russell Square in Central London. These fairs are rather an interesting experience to say the least and allow fans to meet a wide range of actors from the likes of James Bond, Hammer Horror and Carry On franchises. 

Attending this time is the brilliant Julian Holloway, who during a long career on stage and screen clocked up eight Carry On appearances. Beginning with a cameo as a ticket inspector in Carry On Follow That Camel, Julian went on to larger roles in Doctor, Up The Khyber, Camping, Loving, Henry, At Your Convenience and finally England. Julian also played several roles in the 1973 Carry On Christmas television special.

Julian is a familiar face from some of the very best in British television and film. During his career he has appeared in the likes of The Sweeney, The Professionals, Minder, Doctor Who, Elizabeth R and Whatever Happened to the Likely Lads. Film roles include the big screen version of Porridge, the horror Scream and Scream Again and even The Beatles' A Hard Day's Night in 1964. 

A long time resident of the United States, Julian is now back in the UK and I was thrilled to interview him for the blog earlier in the summer. You can read that here and here. Julian was engaging and very entertaining to talk to so do go along on the day to meet him if you can.

The London Film Fair will take place on Sunday 18th November at The Royal National Hotel, 38 - 51 Bedford Way, London, WC1H 0DG. 

You can follow me on Twitter @CarryOnJoan and on Instagram 

Misty Moon Presents: Peter Butterworth - His Untold Story

Now this sounds like a very special evening indeed. Peter Butterworth has always been one of my favourite comic actors and his performances in the Carry Ons were second to none. Sometimes overlooked in favour of the likes of Sid James and Kenneth Williams, Peter worked consistently for decades and in my view never quite got the recognition he deserved. Peter's son Tyler will be taking part in a very special event at London's Cinema Museum in March next year to tell his father's story.

With classic clips and rare photographs from his family’s private collection, Tyler Butterworth relates the extraordinary true story of his father’s war years, his time in the notorious POW camp Stalag Luft III, and early theatrical experiences which directly led to his success as a Carry On star. Tyler talks too about his parent’s marriage, as his mother, the impressionist Janet Brown, became famous for her uncanny portrayal of Margaret Thatcher.

Tyler Butterworth followed his parents into the theatre and spent twenty five years as an actor appearing in many television programmes including The Darling Buds of May(1992), Rumpole of the Bailey (1991), Bergerac (1998), Last of the Summer Wine (2008) and Casualty (1986 and 2002). He is now an audio producer, creating audio guides to cities round the world for private clients.

Tyler will be joined in on stage after the performance by Misty Moon’s Linda Regan for a Q&A with the audience.

After the Q&A Tyler will take part in a meet and greet with the audience and a paid autograph signing.

Tyler Butterworth will be in conversation at the Cinema Museum on Saturday 23 March 2019. Doors open at 18.30, for a 19.30 start.

Tickets in advance £14 (£13 concessions). On the door £15 (£14 concessions).
Advance tickets may be purchased from Billetto, or direct from the Museum by calling 020 7840 2200 in office hours.

And you can read more on why Peter is one of my favourite comedy actors here

You can follow me on Twitter @CarryOnJoan and on Instagram

Art & Hue Presents 1970s Cops!

Now this isn't strictly Carry On related, even if it does feature a pre-Carry On England Patrick Mower, but I just had to share this new range of pop art from the brilliant Art & Hue. I have a massive soft spot for the very best of British television from the golden age - the 1970s. Two of my favourite shows are The Professionals, starring Martin Shaw, Gordon Jackson and Lewis Collins and The Sweeney, which featured John Thaw and Dennis Waterman.

I don't think they make telly like that any more which is a great shame, however you can own your own piece of classic TV nostalgia with this great new range of art work.

Art & Hue presents 1970s Cops, stylish pop art illustrations of iconic Seventies police detectives, available in three sizes and 25 colour options.

Fast talking, thinking, and driving, 1970s cops leapt into action at a moment’s notice, catching bad guys unawares and foiling plots with skidding cars and a cocky swagger.

“The Sweeney”, “The Professionals”, “Special Branch”, and “Target” hooked British viewers with a captivating mix of rule-breaking and action. 

Capturing the spirit of the 1970s, Lewis CollinsMartin ShawGordon JacksonPatrick MowerJohn Thaw, and Dennis Waterman have been given the Art & Hue treatment in this group of six stylish graphic illustrations.

Exclusively by Art & Hue, all pop art prints are printed on museum-quality archival card of 310gsm, made from 100% cotton, using fine art pigment inks for longevity.

2018 marks 40 years since the final episodes of The Sweeney & Target and 35 years since the final episode of The Professionals.

Visit to see the full collection.

You can read my blog on the Carry On connections with The Sweeney here 

And you can read my blog on the Carry On connections with The Professionals here

You can follow me on Twitter @CarryOnJoan and on Instagram

Friday 26 October 2018

Bernie Carries On … As Brother Bernard!

Over the past year I have written a series of blogs covering each of the roles of some of our favourite Carry On stars. I began my looking back at each film role played by the three leading ladies in the series - Joan Sims, Hattie Jacques and Barbara Windsor - and most recently I've written about all of Kenneth Connor's Carry On performances in the run up to the great man's centenary. 

Today I am continuing a new strand of this series by turning the spotlight on that gentle giant of British comedy, the late Bernard Bresslaw. Probably one of the most under-rated actors in the main team, Bernard was a part of the series for ten years and fourteen films, tackling a superb range of crumbling villains and delightfully dimwitted foils to the likes of Sid James and Kenneth Cope. Bernard enjoyed a long career away from the Carry Ons and spent much of his later life wowing audiences in legitimate theatre. However he will forever to remembered for his clutch of hilarious Carry On supporting turns. 

Bernard joined the Carry On team in the mid 1960s and along with Peter Butterworth was the last main team member to join the gang. Along with Butterworth, Bernard played a series of smaller, supporting roles to begin with before graduating to major roles towards the end of the decade. Bernard fitted in effortlessly with the rest of the team and he's the kind of actor who is working hard but making it look oh so easy. A quiet, erudite, thoughtful family man away from the film studios, I often think Bresslaw has never received the credit he's due as like Connor and Butterworth, he didn't ever seek the limelight or splash his life over the front pages.

So today, we'll continue this new series looking at Bernard's role as Brother Bernard, in the 1972 package holiday parody, Carry On Abroad. 

Carry On Abroad sees a group of eccentric British misfits take off for a long weekend in the dodgy Spanish island of Elsbells. The series was once again tapping into the latest trends, this time for cheap and cheerful package holidays. They were all the rage by the early 190s so what better than sending it all up by sending the gang you'd more typically associate with Brighton off to Spain (well the Pinewood Studios car park). This really was the last classic adventure for the core Carry On team and it's been one of my favourites since I first saw it as a child, recorded late at night on ITV. I still have the original VHS tape somewhere...

Although I have a grudging love of the bargain basement 1975 film Carry On Behind, yet another holiday film, Abroad is the last to feature the full compliment of original cast members (minus Jim Dale who had departed in 1969). Abroad features knockout performances from a host of wonderful Carry On stars, with prime parts for Sid, Joan Kenneths Williams and Connor and a return to a major role for the brilliant Peter Butterworth. It also features one of the best guest casts in any of the Carry Ons - June Whitfield as the uptight Evelyn Blunt, Ray Brooks as the handsome Spanish waiterCarol Hawkins and Sally Geeson as two young holidaymakers on the look out for love, Jimmy Logan as the boisterous Bert Conway and Derek Francis as the stuffy old monk.  

The film also features the last role in the series for stalwart Charles Hawtrey. Sadly, growing problems in Hawtrey's personal life had made him increasingly unreliable. Following a spat about billing for the 1972 Christmas special, with top billing going to the main subject of this blog, Hattie Jacques, Charles left the series and despite making occasional theatre and television appearances until his death in 1988, would never make another film. Another Carry On star who was firmly ensconced as part of the gang was Bernard Bresslaw, who takes on one of his most gentle, sympathetic role as Brother Bernard in Carry On Abroad.

While receiving good billing for his performance in Abroad, Bernard's role is pretty unstated and in the background, despite the fact that his character gives up the priesthood and runs off with Carol Hawkins! Brother Bernard is meek, mild and under the thumb of his senior, Brother Martin, played by the brilliant Derek Francis. The pair bicker and moan throughout the film and I only wish Derek had taken on bigger parts in the series, he's superb. Bernard's first big moment, apart from being on the constant look out for the tomb of Saint Cecilia, is to rip off Sally Geeson's skirt in another one of Talbot Rothwell's typical misunderstandings! Sally's character Lily instantly takes again the bumbling monk even though her pal Marge develops quite a soft spot for him.

Bernard gets into another scrape while applying suncream to young Marge on the sandy beach by the Palace Hotel, otherwise known as the Pinewood Studios' car park. Caught in the act of some very mild flirtation, Bernard scrambles to his feet and sprays suncream over everyone within a five mile radius. Bernard's big moment comes later on in the film when the holidaymakers take off for a day trip to the local market. When Charles Hawtrey's Mr Tuttle pays a visit to the local red light bar, owned by a certain Madame Fifi, he encourages some of the other men to join him. Things get out of hand when Tuttle "insults the fine ladies" and all hell breaks loose as the holidaymakers get into a massive brawl and destroy the market! Brother Bernard keeps his distance until the police arrive and try to arrest Marge. A swift punch to the jaw and Bernie's monk ends up spending the night in the cells.

All this does not go down too well with his Brother Martin and when Bernard decides he wants to take Marge to Pepe's farewell party in the hotel, we finally get to see Brother Bernard in his civvies! Sadly the cast is so packed with fan favourites and superb guest actors that we don't get much character development for Bernard and Carol's characters however from what we do see they make a lovely pairing. Bernard's role in Abroad is quite unlike any other he plays in the series. Yes, there's a touch of bumbling and slapstick, but Brother Bernard is neither a snarling villain or yet another version of his stock in trade Army Game simpleton. 

It's a lovely role for Bernard and once again, he proves himself to be the everyman of the early seventies Carry Ons. 

Stay tuned for my blog on Bernard Bresslaw's next role in the series, in the 1973 film Carry On Girls.

You can follow me on Twitter @CarryOnJoan and on Instagram