TV Cream

Bric-a-Brac: B is for...

Barratt Homes

Building firms don’t tend to make memorable adverts, but Barratt’s long-lived 1970s campaign, in which a helicopter zoomed over the majestic expanses of link detached residences on Orchard Mews and Fairview Drive struck a chord. This was down to the none-more-actorly voice of the chopper’s passenger, Patrick Allen. His rich tones (even his voice seemed to wear a cravat) somehow imbued the mundane talk of double garages and double glazing with the stamp of fruity authority. Point of confusion: Allen also voiced the infamous Protect and Survive nuclear fallout films – did that mean a Barratt home could survive a ten megaton attack?



  1. Sarah Hall

    December 11, 2013 at 2:47 pm

    My dad worked for them for a while.

  2. Nick

    September 11, 2015 at 1:10 pm

    Jerzey Balowski: “We don’t need to use some old actor flying upside-down in a helicopter to sell you a Jerzey home.”

  3. Glenn Aylett

    January 2, 2016 at 12:20 pm

    My dad was a quantity surveyor( before my parents split up in 1973) for Barratts and got a preferential deal on a three bedroomed Barratt house in Crawcrook, County Durham, on the sort of housing estate Bob Ferris would feel at home. It did seem that Lawrie Barratt was rapidly taking over every small village and bit of green land in the Newcastle commuter belt to build his ranks of semis and bungalows that people aspired to around 1972.

  4. Glenn Aylett

    November 6, 2021 at 11:20 am

    In the North East, in the seventies, as well getting that all important Cortina company car, a sign you’d made it was you’d moved to an all new Barratt estate on the edge of Newcastle. Central heating, three bedrooms, fitted kitchen, garden front and back, drive for the Cortina, these were huge talking points back then and for people who had left behind their Victorian terraces in Wallsend, a massive leap forward.

  5. THX 1139

    November 6, 2021 at 1:29 pm

    Wasn’t there a comedy sketch show character who spoofed Sherlock Holmes called Barratt Holmes? Anyone recall? Was it Russ Abbott? Sounds like the sort of thing he would do.

    • Richardpd

      November 6, 2021 at 4:37 pm

      Yes that’s right THX1139 with a Dr Watson like sidekick called Wimpey.

      My family’s first house was on a similar development in Heaton Mersey.

      • THX 1139

        November 7, 2021 at 12:02 am

        Thanks for the confirmation! I’d forgotten about Wimpey Homes, a quick Google reveals they’re still around. As is Barratt Homes. I hope at least one of their houses has a blue plaque on it dedicated to Patrick Allen.

  6. Droogie

    November 7, 2021 at 2:33 am

    They built a bunch of Barratt homes on a new housing estate when I was a kid. This was at exactly the same time we were shown the scary public safety movie Building Sites Bite in school warning kids not to play near them.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

To Top