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Tune your telly to ‘Wight Gold’

Cat James

These days we hoover up TV programmes via satellite boxes, on our smartphones, or at our convenience with an on-demand subscription. Binge-watch along with me, as I bang the side of your bakelite telly to tune it into ‘Wight Gold’ vintage sitcom channel.

The Young Ones. Arthur Mullard and Hylda Baker spend their twilight years at Bembridge – living with her grandparents.

It Ain’t Half Hot, Mum. Chortles aplenty as Shanklin’s well-deserved status as Sunniest Place in Britain is challenged. Episode four: Eastbourne declares war.

Mind Your Langbridge. Each week, leisure cyclists run the gauntlet as Newchurch’s steam train enthusiasts campaign for the return of the railway on the Red Squirrel Trail.

Last of the Summer Whine. A day trip for the County Press commenters club turns to farce as they run into the On The Wight nay-sayers.

Mrs Brown’s Boys. Matronly Queen Victoria meddles in the lives of her many sons. We are not amused.

Downenders. Intergenerational mayhem, with woodcutter Michal happily going about his daily life until grandson James Dove comes to live with him. Then events take a darker turn.

Up Pompey. After the rumour that Hampshire County Council might withdraw support for Island services, locals unite and raise two giant wicker fingers on Appley beach.

The Cream T Crowd. Moss and Roy open a computer repair business in Godshill.

The Lukely Lads. Tackle-based funnies as extreme fisherman Terry (played by Robson Green) teams up with Bob (Ross Kemp) on the hunt in Carisbrooke for an elusive trout they have nicknamed Thelma.

The Fall and Rise of Reginald Barry.

Love Thy Neighbour. Culture-clash comedy as teens – one from East Cowes, one from Cowes – fall in love on the floating bridge.

Closed All Hours. A Cranmore pensioner goes on a fruitless and exhausting mission to buy some milk and a scratch card in West Wight on a Wednesday afternoon.

Hancock’s Half Hour. Curmudgeonly middle-aged Tony pontificates on life while stuck in various Island log-jams. Episode two: After spending thirty minutes trying in vain to find a parking space at St Mary’s Hospital, Tony drives to Cowes – only to see the floating bridge draw away.

Father Ted. Beloved children’s character, Sailor Ted, gets shipwrecked on the Isle of Wight. Discovering heathens he swaps his sailor suit for a dog collar and becomes a missionary.

Are You Being Served? Episode thirty: Ronnie is overwhelmed by the attentions of overall-clad assistants when he pops into Hursts to buy four candles.

Off the Buses. Hilarity ensues as animated skeletons wait expectantly at a rural, yet long-decommissioned, bus stop.

Ferry and June. Laughs aplenty as efforts to cross the Solent during the annual Isle of Wight pop festival are sorely tested.

Both Feet in the Grave. Victor Meldrew retires to Freshwater.

Til Heath Do Us Part. Political squabbling as Ryde Town councillors are divided over whether or not to fund the community hub at Aspire.

Rising Damp. Set fifty years hence. Residents of Thorley regret campaigning against wind turbines as the rising sea approaches.

This article first appeared in print in the Isle of Wight County Press on 5 April 2019, and also online.

Cat James

Graphic designer, creative director of Pinkeye Graphics, Isle of Wight County Press columnist, Cat out of Matt and Cat

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