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Carry On Loving

Straight off the bat one is inclined to recall this as being not amongst the best in show as Carry On’s go – there’s something rather unwholesome about seeing Terry Scott having anything to do with any woman who isn’t June Whitfield – but then one starts to recall Sid and Hat running their Marriage Bureau, Charles Hawtrey as a private eye, Bernard Bresslaw as the wrestler Gripper Burke (was there no bounds to that man’s talents?) and Kenneth Williams and Patsy Rowlands at the Marriage Guidance Council and one thinks…actually, this is quite a good ‘un.



  1. Tom Ronson

    March 31, 2022 at 7:57 pm

    The late David Kavanagh’s Terry Scott anecdote…

    It is a very hot, sweltering summer’s day in 1989.

    Waterloo Station. I’m trying to get a train to Portsmouth to see REM at The Guildhall that night. It’s Friday, 5pm-ish, and one train has already been cancelled. Now another is cancelled. The heat is ferocious.

    So three lots of commuters are running for the train to Portsmouth, and my mate and I get to a carriage near the front, plonk ourselves down in opposite seats and feel pretty good that we’re finally going to get moving, and may even reach Portsmouth in time.

    After the train has been moving for about 10 minutes, I hear a voice complain loudly: “Innit marvellous! There he is, with a sign behind him saying ‘Please give up your seat if somebody needs it’, and what does he do? Nothing. Absolutely nothing.”

    I look round. It’s a crowded carriage. Terry Scott is glaring at me. He is standing up, wearing a light blue short-sleeved shirt, with a huge belly, and he’s holding on to an overhead strap with one hand, while clutching a huge bunch of flowers with the other. He is sweating profusely – I mean waterfalls of perspiration just pouring down his face.

    I look behind me. Sure enough, there is a sign – I hadn’t noticed it when I sat down – asking me to give up my seat to someone who needs it more than I do.

    I look at Terry Scott. “Er, would you like my seat?” I ask.

    “Well, if it wouldn’t be too much trouble,” he replies, “YES I WOULD.”

    So we swap places. I hold on to the overhead strap while he takes my seat (with a resounding “Ooooomph!!” as he sits down).

    People are slightly embarrassed. Me and Terry Scott have made the cardinal error of talking out loud on a busy train. Fuck it, I think, in for a penny, in for a pound.

    “Can I ask you something?” I say. “Do you ever watch those Carry On compilations that they have on telly?”

    (This was 1989. These compilations were relatively new at the time.)

    “Me, son? Nah, nah, nah….”

    I decide to push the issue.

    “They’re very good. I don’t suppose you earn any money from them?”

    Suddenly he’s off. Telling me what a huge rip-off the Carry On franchise was. How he got paid a derisory one-off fee and has had to watch, appalled, as a load of no-talents make money out of his work. The crowded carriage is now hanging on his every word. I have Terry Scott in the palm of my hand. He is clutching on to his flowers and a lifetime’s bitterness is coming to the surface.

    My questions take a fatalistic turn.

    “Such a shame, though, that Sid James and Kenneth Williams are dead now…”

    “All dead, son, all dead,” he says. “There’s only me left now.”

    “Well… you and Jim Dale,” I point out.

    “No, he was never in them, son.”

    “Yes he was.”

    “No he wasn’t, son.”

    “He was in Khyber. And one of the Doctors.”

    “No, son, he wasn’t. No no no. He was never one of us. No no.”

    I clear my throat.

    “Look… sorry… Jim Dale was DEFINITELY in some of the Carry On films.”

    “No, son. No no no. He was never one of us. There was Sid, me, Charlie, Ken, Babs, Joanie, Bernie, Jack and Liz. That’s all. No one else, son. There was no one else.”

    He got off two stops down the line, after explaining that the flowers were for his mother who was very ill in hospital. He thanked me for the seat — there were people between us, so it wasn’t possible to shake his hand — and he sweated his way off the train.

    “He’ll be dead within a year,” said my mate as I sat down opposite him again.

    (Kavanagh’s mate was five years out.)

    • Richardpd

      October 12, 2022 at 10:21 pm

      Interesting anecdote about Terry Scott, in actual fact the Carry On Team changed quite a bit over the years, with the likes of Eric Barker only in the early ones, & Kenneth Conner oddly being in the early & late ones.

      Late in life Terry admitted his drinking & smoking had taken a toll on his health.

  2. Droogie

    October 11, 2022 at 3:36 pm

    Only just read Tom’s post above. What a cracking anecdote!

    One attempt at a double-entendre in this film has always baffled me. Sid needs to go to Joan Sim’s apartment so hails a taxi. “Where to, Guv?” says the cabbie. Sid says the address “Rogeringham Halls”. An incensed cabbie shouts “ Don’t you swear at me!” and drives away. I don’t get the gag! I know Rogeringham Halls sounds a bit like Rogering Them
    All, but don’t get why someone would be offended my mishearing this. Anybody?

    • Tom Ronson

      October 11, 2022 at 8:34 pm

      It’s Rogerham Mansions, as in ‘roger ’em.’

      • Droogie

        October 11, 2022 at 9:30 pm

        But why would a taxi driver drive off in disgust at hearing Rogerham Mansions?

  3. George White

    October 13, 2022 at 7:08 am

    And it were Roy Castle in Khyber.

  4. Glenn Aylett

    October 14, 2022 at 8:33 pm

    Terry Scott’s comments about the stingy pay the actors received for the Carry Ons was a well known gripe among the regulars, causing some of them to quit in the early seventies. Typically a regular like Charles Hawtrey would receive £ 3000 a film, and make three films a year. Obviously £ 9000 a year in 1970 was good money, but pitiful considering how popular the Carry Ons were and when the producer, Peter Rogers, was making £ 50,000 a film and swanning around in Rolls Royces. Also many of the actors were scared of being typecast, but also knew their Carry On fees weren’t enough to have a lavish retirement, so many stuck out the series.

  5. Richardpd

    October 14, 2022 at 10:47 pm

    Kenneth Williams used to claim that some of his better paying advert voice overs would earn him more than doing a Carry On, normally for a day or so of work.

    It’s interesting that he stuck with the series in spite of often considering them beneath him, & had plenty of other work.

  6. Glenn Aylett

    October 15, 2022 at 12:20 pm

    The Carry Ons did have some actors who went on to other great things. There was a repeat of Carry On Teacher on Film 4 yesterday and it starred a young Richard O Sullevan and Leslie Philips, who moved on to other things. Also Hattie Jacques managed to jump ship from the Carry Ons to a very successful run in Sykes.

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