BEDPAN-WIELDING BEDROCK of early ITV schedules, running twice-weekly for nigh on a decade before The Right Reverend Lew Grade pulled the plug (“one of the biggest mistakes of my career” he moped). Action based at fictional Oxbridge General Hospital, initially concentrating on fortunes of Nurse Pat Roberts (ROSEMARY MILLER) before cast bloated with stars-to-be including DESMOND “ALL TIME GREATS” CARRINGTON, RICHARD “EMMERDALE” THORP, RAY “TROUBLESHOOTERS” BARRATT and JOHN “…AND PAULINE COLLINS” ALDERTON, while roll call of “celebrity” sickies threw up ALBERT FINNEY, IAN HENDRY, JOANNA LUMLEY and countless hundreds more. Strict rules regarding corpse count: five per year to begin with, later revised – downwards – to a crappy two. Dependable ratings-winner and source of, inevitable, spin-offs including Call Oxbridge 2000 and 24-Hour Call plus big screen cash cow Life In Emergency Ward 10. Revived in selfless gesture by Uncle Lew as GENERAL HOSPITAL.