Saturday, July 12, 2008

Radio Fun

Walked to town and back this morning. Found this old 1941 Radio Fun annual on the cheap book stall in the undercover market. It has lots of old stars of BBC radio in comic strip form- some I've never heard of like Duggie Wakefield and a double act Ethel Revnell & Gracie West. I shall have to do some searching on the internet and see what I can find.

Duggie Wakefiled was in a film called The Penny Pool. Here's a review from a BBC website-

"Duggie Wakefield was a music-hall comedian who made his living playing dolts who, against all the odds, eventually came good. Released by Mancunian Films, which specialised in broad comedies with a distinctly regional feel, this hopelessly dated picture has our gormless hero getting mixed up with factory worker Luanne Shaw just as her winning pools coupon goes missing. Directed by George Black, the film was produced by John E Blakeley, who would go on to work with comedian Frank Randle on a series of vulgar farces in the 1940s and 1950s."

On the website about panto It's Behind You! under the double acts section it describes Ethel Revnell & Gracie West thus-

"Ethel Revnell and Gracie West were a popular female double act. Ethel was just over six feet tall, while Gracie was considerably shorter, at just under five feet. They began their career in Concert party. Their most popular variety characters were “Ethel & Gracie”, malevolent cockney schoolgirls. As a result of this they appeared as comic “Babes” in “Babes in The Wood”, and later as The Ugly Sisters in the Drury Lane pantomime, “Cinderella” in 1934. In this production the Baron’s name was changed to accommodate the “Long & The Short” ladies playing sisters. Instead of being Baron Hardup, he became Baron Mumm. That way his “Daughters” could be called Maxi and Mini!

Gracie retired in 1953, but Ethel continued in variety, and played female Dame in pantomime. Ethel died in 1978 and Gracie in 1989."

So now you know.

It's a horrible dull rain spattered day again and we are sick of it. Hopefully the weather will improve next week but looks like the rain has spoiled our trip to the annual Steam Fair - the ground will be far too soggy for those huge steam engines.

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