Saturday, 4 June 2011

Please Sir!

Please Sir! was a situation comedy from London Weekend Television created by writers John Esmonde and Bob Larbey and featured the actors, John Alderton, Derek Guyler, Joan Sanderson, Noel Howlett, Erik Chitty, Richard Davies, David Barry, Peter Cleall and Malcolm McFee. Please Sir ran for 55 episodes between 1968 and 1972.
The programme was set in the fictional Fenn Street school, and starred John Alderton as Bernard Hedges, a young teacher fresh out of training college. The supporting cast included Deryck Guyler, Joan Sanderson and Richard Davies. The students of class 5C were played by Malcolm McFee (as Peter Craven; played by Leon Vitali in fourth series episode "Old Fennians Day"), Peter Cleall (as Eric Duffy), Peter Denyer (as Dennis Dunstable), David Barry (as Frankie Abbott), Penny Spencer (as Sharon Eversleigh; played by Carol Hawkins in fourth series episode "Old Fennians Day" and in the movie), and Liz Gebhardt (as Maureen Bullock), Bernard Hedges and the 5C pupils were replaced by a new teacher and pupils for the final series in 1971–72. Several well-known character actors and actresses formed the supporting cast, including Barbara Mitchell as Frankie Abbott's mother and Ann Lancaster as Mrs. Rhubarb in a 1968 episode.
A spin-off series, The Fenn Street Gang, followed the adventures of the former 5C members (see above) in the adult world after leaving their schooldays behind them; for this series Carol Hawkins took the Sharon Eversleigh role and Leon Vitali took the role of Peter Craven, replacing Malcolm McFee for half of the first series episodes with McFee returning for the remaining series. It ran for 47 episodes between 1971 and 1973. Bowler (1973) was a spin-off from the spin-off – following The Fenn Street Gang crime boss Stanley Bowler, played by George Baker; there were 13 episodes.
Like many situation comedies of this era, a film version was released in 1971. This was set in an outdoor pursuit centre and starred most of the TV cast and was crap!.

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