Slapstick festival returns with a look back at The Young Ones

December 20 2016

The world’s biggest festival of vintage screen comedy – Slapstick – will be back in Bristol from January 18 to 22 chasing away wintry blues with a five day programme showcasing 100 years of stand-out film and television hilarity.

the young ones

The world’s biggest festival of vintage screen comedy – Slapstick – will be back in Bristol from January 18 to 22 chasing away wintry blues with a five day programme showcasing 100 years of stand-out film and television hilarity.  

The  13th annual Slapstick festival will be taking place at the Arnolfini, Bristol Old Vic, Colston Hall and Watershed from Wednesday 18 to Sunday 22 January 2017.

Slapstick 2017 is assembling a cast of today’s top entertainers -  including Rory Bremner, Marcus Brigstocke, Simon Callow, Barry Cryer,  Roy Hudd, Shazia Mirza, Bill Oddie and Lucy Porter -  to host salutes to Charlie Chaplin, Laurel and Hardy and other funny stars of the silent film era; favourite British comedies, and the newly-lost but unforgettable talents of Rik Mayall and Victoria Wood. 

Marcus Brigstocke is introducing a  look-back at The Young OneS at BOV on Sunday 22 January. This is regarded as the UK’s first ‘alternative’ sitcom – much of which was filmed in and around Bishopston and Westbury Park.  

It will be 35 years in 2017 since THE YOUNG ONES reached the screen, changing the British comedy landscape and helping to establish the reputations of many of the entertainers who are household names today, among them Ben Elton, Dawn French, Stephen Fry, Hugh Laurie, Jennifer Saunders.

Joining Marcus on stage at Slapstick will be the series’ co-writer Lise Mayer; actor Nigel Planer (who played Neil the hippie), and the comedian, actor and author Alexei Sayle, who popped up in every episode as different members of the Belowski family, landlords of the house occupied by the students - 1 Codrington Road, Bishopston.

Other notable places around the area are the newly relaunched Westbury Park Pub and Kitchen which, in its Cock O' The North days, stood in as the gang’s local - the Kebab And Calculator. The zebra crossing on Northumbria Drive was the one they crossed to get to the pub and where they recreated the image used on the cover of The Beatles’ Abbey Road album!

Bristol North Swimming Baths on Gloucester Road was used in several guises, including once as a police station and in another episode as the bank the boys attempted to rob. Different shops near the Gloucester Road Baths served as an Army careers office and a launderette. 

For more info, a full programme of events, or to book, see www.slapstick.org.uk