Last Of The Summer Wine: 50th anniversary of legendary sitcom being celebrated this weekend

A festival of memories is being held in Holmfirth this weekend to celebrate the sitcom synonymous with the town.
Actress Kathy Staff (Nora Batty) during filming for Last of the Summer Wine in Homfirth.Actress Kathy Staff (Nora Batty) during filming for Last of the Summer Wine in Homfirth.
Actress Kathy Staff (Nora Batty) during filming for Last of the Summer Wine in Homfirth.

This year is the 50th anniversary of Last of the Summer, with the pilot show being broadcast in January 1973 and the series starting in November of that year.

And so the town’s businesses have decided to run with the theme of 50 Golden Summers and go with a special weekend in the much-loved show’s honour.

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There will be a smattering of famous faces, including stars from the programme, including comedian Tommy Cannon and actors Jonathan Linsley, Stuart Fell and David Fenwick, who will be on stage at the Civic today at 2pm when they will be interviewed by broadcaster Bob Fischer.

Jonathan, who played Ivy’s gormless nephew Crusher, will also take part in An Audience with today at 6.30pm.

And local greengrocer Andrew Bray will recount stories of his friendship with Bill Owen, who played Compo, in a session at the Holmfirth Tavern today at noon. It started with Bill borrowing the then 11-year-old’s fishing rod in 1972 and ending with Andrew helping to arrange Bill’s funeral in Holmfirth.

There is a performance of Summer Winos tomorrow afternoon, with the live stage show of two men’s obsession about Last of the Summer Wine, which has played at Edinburgh Fringe Festival and in a national tour.

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Tomorrow there will also be a gala screening of Getting Sam Home, the 1983 Last of the Summer Wine movie which has been digitally remastered for the first time.

It will be shown at the Civic and tickets are free but must be booked in advance, with all proceeds going to Children in Need at the request of the BBC.

There will also be photo opportunities a-plenty with Edie red Triumph Herald being brought up for the weekend by its owners, along with the front end of Wesley’s pickup truck, while models dressed in characters’ costumes will be outside Sid’s Cafe and Nora and Compo’s cottages.

A new Last of the Summer Wine walk around the town has been organised by Holmfirth Library and Walkers Are Welcome Group, and there is also a treasure hunt for children throughout the weekend.

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