Tuesday, November 2, 2010

On The Buses

London Weekend Television, which was part of the ITV network in the UK, launched a must see TV comedy series in 1969 called "On The Buses" that ran with HUGE popularity through to 1973. The comedy series involved  Bus driver Stan, played by Reg Varney, and his constant adventures to get the girl or to out wit his Inspector Blakey, gentle comedy but well written by  Ronald Wolfe and Ronald Chesney who tried to sell the idea to the BBC, but failed, so LWT took it on and it mad household names out of all the characters and even inspired the programme going to a cinema version too.
Stan lived with his family, and those characters provided great comedy, especially his relationship with his sister Olive and her husband Arthur.

This was the Christmas Day special in 1970, and I still remember sitting down and watching this must see TV programme.

The Main Cast

Reg Varney played Stan Butler  born in 1916 and died in 2008 aged 92. He was the man that opened the first ATM in the UK in 1967. In the 70s he made three "On The Buses" films and a series called "Down The Gate".

Doris Hare MBE played in most of the series the mother, she was born in  1905 and died in the year 2000.
She turned down the part in Coronation Street of Ena Sharples, which is a character edged in Britain's mind now.

Anna Karen played  Stan's sister Olive, she was born in South Africa in 1936. Karen in 1976 played Olive again in the 70s version of Rag Trade, where in the original run starred Reg Varney.

Michael Robbins played Arthur the wife of Olive, he played this role with great sarcasm, and for me he was my favourite character. Michael died in 1992 from cancer.
He appeared in numerous 70s TV shows including "Z Cars","Return of the Saint","The Sweeney" and  "Man About The House".

Stephen Lewis played Blakey the inspector, Stephen born in 1936 also starred in "Dont Drink The Water" and "The Fosters".

Bob Grant played Jack Harper in the series. Bob died in 2003 he killed himself. 

Here the cast get together in 1987 talking about their time on the show.

No comments:

Post a Comment