Malcolm Stent – Radio WM Photocard

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Malcolm presented on both Radio Birmingham and Radio WM, with ‘Folk Scene’ and ‘Malcolm Stent in the Barmaid’s Arms’.  He was often accompanied by his guitar, and never relied on scripts or running orders!  He was described on the BBC website as a ‘folk-singing humorist’.

Thanks to Stuart Gandy for making this Radio WM photocard available.

The following comments have been left by people who remember Malcolm’s show:

Lynn Cullimore: We were lucky enough to be able to pick up the Barmaid’s Arms from WM and do a TV version.  I
did several series with Malcolm Stent. He is still working and often does things with the comedian Don Maclean who I have only recently met up with again, as I also worked with Don. John Clarke was the producer for Regional TV. Malc is great fun and a lovely person.  I was the production assistant on barmaid’s arms for regional television and I loved it. The sets were fantastic – Mary Spencer was the designer and we had “customers” who had to have little tokens to get drinks as of course they were restricted! Malc and Rosie – yes her name was Mary Lloyd were brilliant. Oh happy days.

Andrew Langstone: Memories of ‘The Barmaid’s Arms’ with Malc and Rosie – those wonderful sound effects of a pub – clinking glasses and jolly background chatter. I think Rosie’s real name was Marie Lloyd [it was actually Mary Kendall]. The whole concept of a lunchtime in a pub with gentle banter and music ”from the juke box” was inspired – another of Mr Pickle’s ideas? It’s a pity BBC WM has such a different sound now – but that’s another story!

Tim Manning: The Barmaid’s Arms was a big success for Radio WM and for Malcolm, a daily chat show with its stereo pub sound effects in the background, and a cast of fictitious regulars (like Simon the Crisp Man). People used to turn up at Reception at the weekend asking for directions, and it’s one of very few local radio shows to have been turned into a regional opt-out TV series. All the music played was supposedly on the jukebox, although Rosie the barmaid did say she liked “those copulation albums”!  Yes, it was very much a John Pickles concept. He once said to me that he thought of that WM schedule as being “a bit like a street”, starting the day over the breakfast table with news and the papers, followed by coffee with friends and neighbours (The 206 Team), popping into the pub at lunch time (Barmaid’s Arms), then a quiet time after that before picking up the kids from school, or coming home from work in the rush hour. One of his most inspired ideas was the “romance” between Stuart Roper and Viv Ellis, which was only ever really mentioned in other programmes, until the surreal and wonderful fake OB of the wedding on April Fool’s Day.

Pete Simpkin: Malc bless him is still at work in his favourite medium the stage and regularly writes produces and stars in the Solihull Arts Centre Annual Traditional family pantomime. I was honoured to help him with the technical side of his early days at Pebble mill where he presented Folk Club on Radio Birmingham. We also shared some stage talent shows which I produced at the Old Rep theatre and I produced his famous album ‘Malc Stent is not a working class Millionaire.’ After the tragic axing of the Barmaid’s he went onto be the ‘Warm up’ man for ‘PM at One’.


3 comments on “Malcolm Stent – Radio WM Photocard
  1. The Barmaid’s Arms followed right on from our show – 206 Team – they were both such fun to work with. It was great to see Malc at the 40th ‘do’ though I was seated up in the ‘Gods’ & never managed to get his attention for a catch up! My sister bumps into him at dos around Redditch though.

  2. It was due to the Barmaid’s Arms and Malcolm encouraging Ivor and myself to have a drink at the bar together – the floor manager at the time Dave Brazier thought the scene looked and sat us together (I was waiting for my Mum who was in the audience, and Ivor had heard there was a ‘free drink’ going in Studio A) to make it look like ‘a practical bar’. After a few drinks we got chatting and the rest is history!

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