Email & FeedbackMany thanks to everyone who sent in email. Shown here are some of the best of those email replies collected over the years. How many of the comments do you identify with ?
Who was your favourite character ? (& does this tie in with your occupation ?)My favourite character was Mr Munnings the printer for no particular reason, I guess I still like DTP and journalism.
The whole fire-brigade of course :-)
Windy Miller, Miss Lovelace and Mitzi, Daphne & Lulu
Seargant Major Grout (I later became a soldier!).
The youngest fireman is my favourite character, probably because he seems a bit stupid but is sweet with it.
Chippy Minton was my favourite character because I thought it was a great name. Honourable mention goes to Brackett because I admired his stately pace.
I suppose (vaguely) that in Trumpton the fire brigade in general was the interesting bit and (even more vaguely) that in Camberwick Green my favourite may have been Dr Mopp. This would be a clear father-figure case. My father was a fellow in Virology (now a Professor), and at age four I probably had a dim idea of his being a doctor, though not of the ordinary GP kind. My father wears glasses, but he has never had a beard and did not grow a moustache until much later. He has also never, to my knowledge, worn a top hat.
Probably the chap at the end winding the credits up. Distinct lack of scientists in Trumptonshire.
Chippy Minton - I remember being fond of his wonderfully late 60s pick-up truck. I am a graduate student in applied mathematics so no obvious connection!
I would say that my favourite characters were definitely Pugh, Pugh, Barney McGrew, Cuthbert, Dibble and Grubb (and _I_ never had any trouble with their names). I think my favourite song is the steam-train (``time flies by...''). Neither of these has much to do with my present occupation (as a graduate maths student), but there you go.
Windy, of course, sticks out, though I don't think that as a child he was my favourite. Even then, I think I thought he was a bit weird.
I have several favourites, but the main one has to be Mr. Dagenham from Camberwick Green. I'm an inner city kid who found the likes of Farmer Bell a bit confusing and alienating when I was young, so a well-dressed man with flash city ways was the one I could identify with the most from that programme.
I think my favourite character must be all of the firemen, and their incredibly slow fire-engine.
My favourite characters were Pugh, Pugh, Barney McGrew, Cuthbert, Dibble and Grubb - although I was never interested in becoming a firefighter. This list of names was one of the first things my mother taught me to say, so it is still with me today.
I'm not sure if this qualifies, but my favourite "characters" have always been the puffs of steam from Lord Bracket's train. As a child, I used to sit in absolute fascination in front of the telly watching those puffs.
My favourite character was Lord Belborough - it might have been his steam-train that prompted me to become a Signalman.
My favourite character is Chippy Minton because my late dad was a joiner. I remember playing in his workshop (approx 4-5yrs old) in among the wood shavings singing "I like my job as a carpenter......". Happy days...
I always liked Windy Miller. Kept himself to himself, didn't say much, although I always had a sneaking admiration for Lord Belborough because he owned his own Loco. I don't think it had any enduring effect on my chosen career, although I do like to tinker with old cars.
My favourite character was Farmer Jonathon Bell because he was surely the most progressive thinker in the programme. In hindsight, however, I wonder if a large capital investment in a dairy herd and mechanical milking equipment was such a good long term investment. (What with milk quotas and BSE !)
My favourite character was Windy Miller and I blame him for my love of cider. I liked Paddy Murphy and I had a little plastic model of the bakers shop with Paddy ( and his sister). I also had a Trumpton book, in it was a story of how the mayor sat on a seat that had been freashly painted and he got strips on his bum ( not that the book said bum). I loved this story, it made me laugh until I cried when I first read it ( or to be truthful had it read to me).
What do you remember from the early showings ?I remember Trumpton + Camberwick Green most clearly. I dont know if Chigley stopped being shown sooner, but I didn't remember some of the main characters.
A lot of people have said that they do not remember Chigley so well...
The butler fella who used to answer the phone, and of course, windy miller and the noise of his windmill.
The big foam feet, the set endings (tea-dance, fire-brigade band and the magic box)...
Pippin fort, Windy Miller, PC McGary (including his number for some stange reason). The humpety bumpety army truck (actually I was truck driver in the army!).
Lord Belborough's train. Trumpton town centre. The butler's walk. After that it's a bit fuzzy. I seem to remember some annoying woman with lots of dogs - did she get stuck down a manhole at some point?
I remember being traumatised by the episode where the young PO engineer misconnects Trumpton's telephone system. He seemed to be subjected to an inordinate amount of wrath for what was, as I recall, an innocent mistake. Even aged 4, I really felt for the poor man!!
It's hard to say, having watched the series for so many years, what you remember from early viewings, and what from later ones. I do remember thinking that the Wharf was particularly fascinating when I was young (perhaps because it was totally outside of my experience??); that you could transfer things from a train to a boat: wow!
What sticks in my mind the most clearly is the Trumpton clock being repaired - as a kid the workings seemed amazingly complex!
I especially liked the mechanical things: the windmill, the fire engine, the steam train, the biscuit factory, printing press, wharf etc...
Chippy Mintons car that seemed to take forever for it's engine to come to a stop. (A bit of a pre-ignition problem?)
In another, Mrs Honeyman leaves baby outside the post office while the sign above is being painted - little red spots form on baby's face, and puts her into a terrible panic. Of course, the spots turn out to be paint. (I seem to remember trying something similar when I didn't want to go to school once, but it didn't work!)
Oh and I didn't like those dogs that looked like a collection of up-right vacuum cleaners.
Why did Barney McGrew always drive the Fire Engine with his eyes shut? He played cymbals in the band and always looked like he was going to get his nose caught.
Why did the train never have any flat wagons though, they always had to balance the crates in those small open passenger cars they had? How did the barge turn around?
My biggest remembrance of them all was Lord Belborough saying to Bracket when they had to go somewhere in Bessie "Come on Bracket, let's get changed".
Did you have any weird thoughts about the Trumptonshire programmes ?I cannot recall any strange thoughts prompted by any of these programmes, apart from the fact that none of the characters had a mouth or discernible fingers. Some years after the fact, listening to the Trumpton LP back home, I did wonder why the fire brigade band played the same piece at every single concert. Now, of course, I realize that it must have been their standard encore -- like the Radetzky March at the Vienna New YearConcert or Rule Britannia at the Last Night of the Proms. It never occurred to me to wonder how on earth a band consisting exclusively of wind instruments could manage to sound like an acoustic guitar.
Just the usual one about the imminent Windy Miller/whirling sails catastrophe. I used to wonder why it took the butler so long to get anywhere.
I remember thinking it was weird the way the biscuit factory just stopped work when the whistle blew. I used to think all the biscuits that were left out would be stale by the next morning.
Yes, why was Pippin fort apparently equipped for a Napoleonic war (with the glaring exception of the soldier boys' lorry) and why did the workers in the biscuit factory dress up as rustic Romanians for their end of the day dance?
I remember asking my mother what would happen if there was a fire while the Fire Brigade were playing in the bandstand and never really getting a reasonable answer.
Apart from bringing back childhood memories, it affords a new insight into the mysterious depths of some of the characters. The fact that Windy Miller is an almost supernaturally-gifted telepathic alcoholic was particularly interesting. A film-maker friend of mine made an interesting observation about Windy: he wonders whether the reason why he was a bachelor, was because he feared that on his wedding night his bride might--in a cider-induced stupour--be de-capitated by the sails as she stumbled out of the mill? An interesting point I'm sure you'll agree.
1. why did the fire engine driver apparently
have no eyes, and how did he manage to drive blind?
A friend of mine confided that he always envied the guy at the start of Camberwick Green and wished he had his job!
I can also remember trying to figure out how the music box was powered.
How did all of the men get out of such a tiny (biscuit) factory, they were about half the size of the whole building ?
Another thought that came to mind was I used to wonder whether, if Mrs Honeyman's skirt got blown about by the wind (well, they must have had some, or Windy would have been down the Job Centre), she'd be wearing rollerskates, the way she glided around.
Wasn't life difficult without fingers, especially using old style dial phones? I was also completely fascinated by the 3 dogs who appeared to move on wheels. One thing that's always stuck with me is that the music box seemed to be made from a J-Cloth box. I always wondered if one of the characters would pop out of my Mum's J-Cloths under the sink.
I always wanted to know what was around the back of Dutch Organ and how it worked. I found the musical box very hard to believe. I always wanted to know how that worked so smoothly too, but I really couldn't make a mental connection between life in the episodes and the way characters would appear out of the box in an apparently different world.
I had a colleague who couldn't wait to start work having left school because he could attend the six o'clock dances! Keeep up the good work.
I always wondered why the famous Trumpton roll-call left the two Pughs undistinguished, yet gave Barney McGrew's first name (unless, of course, it was double barrelled, though as he was a working-class archetype this would have been unlikely)...
Was Philby, the Mayor's Driver, a reference to the KGB spy? Chauffeurs are well known for their access to sensitive information thanks to indiscreet conversations in the back of their vehicles.
I was puzzled by the paramilitary organization that was housed in Pippin Fort. For starters, how did they all fit in? That fort was bloody tiny! And what were those uniforms all about? Were powdered wigs an advantage in a fight?!?!
The clown at the end who used to roll the credits up used to scare the hell out of me!!!!(I was very young)
I was greatly worried each time the bell rang in Trumpton fire station in case it was a real fire, I think I had doubts at their competence to deal with a real emergency.
I don't know about anyone else, but Windy Miller scared the sh*t out of me when I was a kid. When that music box span round and Windy appeared I would hide behind the sofa - never mind Dr. Who - I was frightened of Windy.
There is nothing more relaxing than watching the train, with lord and butler chugging off to the same destination each episode to deliver/collect some box or other.
I always thought that Mrs Honeyman looked far too old to have a young baby
And finally...The videos I have are from Longman, and they are simply called Camberwick Green, Chigley and Trumpton. I bought them years ago (when I used to work for RollsRoyce in an old _biscuit_factory_ :-)
One of those classes, where I was in the un-caring under-achievers bracket was MUSIC. Being tone deaf wasn't a help either. However, the one thing I remember from all those tortuous lessons (when we weren't listening to Peter and the Wolf) was the few weeks where we learned to play the Trumpton fire-brigade tune en-masse. Imagine twenty sullen teenagers starting to play things, turning into happy smiling (well-adjusted) young adults as we got the hang of it. I must admit that I seem to remember us playing it VERY well :-) There you go, my one musical achievment in thirty years is from Trumpton!
Another, more recent anecdote, is to do with my numerous (work related) visits to the USofA. A trick used by myself upon meeting other Brits of similar age, whilst in the company of US Americans is to say "Pugh, Pugh,...". It usually gets a good response.
You really haven't lived 'til you've seen an office-full of thirty-something engineers all geefuly singing "Time flies by when I'm the driver of a train", and pretending to be Windy Miller - "you've done what Windy? Messed up the system test *again*" ("Windy" nods sadly) ...
I have this horror that one day some misguided Trumpton fan with too much money is going to come up with the idea for TRUMPTON! the musical. This is one thing that needs to stay on the small screen, with BC's voice and FP's two guitar and assorted percussion music with that grainy sixties look to it. Sorry - but I'm a traditionalist.
One can certainly say that the Trumptonshire Web "justifies the licence fee on its own" (though I won't be selling my house and all its contents to help the corporation I'm afraid).
Wow! I have just accessed the trumptonshire web pages - this must surely be why the internet was created! Forget about US military requirements - all that tosh is just a cover - the internet was created for TRUMPTON!
Thanks for bringing back some cool memories.
PS God bless Brian Cant