Pickwick Papers

John Rees on Pickwick Papers. Photograph by Albert Sheard, no reproduction without permission

Pickwick Papers, Phil Hawkins, Frank Manning, Kevin Priestly, John Rees, photo by Albert Sheard, no reproduction without permission

















Thanks to Albert Sheard for sharing these photos from the 1985 adaptation of Dickens’s Pickwick Papers. The location was in Ludlow, Shropshire. Here is the entry from the Radio Times, courtesy of the BBC Genome project:


by Charles Dickens dramatised in 12 episodes by Jack Davies
starring Nigel Stock as Mr Pickwick with Clive Swift as Mr Tupman, Jeremy Nicholas as Mr Winkle, Alan Parnaby as Mr Snodgrass and Colin Douglas as Mr Wardle, Patrick Malahide as Mr Jingle
Charles Dickens was still only 24 when, in his own words, “I thought of Mr Pickwick…”
The Pickwick Papers soon became a national craze. Mr Pickwick, his friends Tupman, Winkle and Snodgrass, and his cockney servant the immortal Sam Weller, have been among the most popular characters in fiction ever since.
This week they begin their travels through the England of stage-coaches and coaching inns – in a new version of Dickens’s first and most-loved bestseller.
(Nigel Stock visits “Pebble Mill at One” tomorrow)

Author: Charles Dickens
Dramatised by: Jack Davies
Music composed and conducted by: Carl Davis
Lighting Director: Bob Chaplin
Script Editor: Terrance Dicks
Designer: Myles Lang
Producer: Barry Letts
Director: Brian Lighthill
Narrator: Ray Brooks
Mr Pickwick: Nigel Stock
Mr Tupman: Clive Swift
Mr Winkle: Jeremy Nicholas
Mr Snodgrass: Alan Parnaby
Sam Weller: Phil Daniels
Mr Wardle: Colin Douglas
Mr Jingle: Patrick Malahide
Mrs Bardell: Jo Kendall
Cab driver: Barry Linehan
Waiter (Bull Inn): Russell Denton
Doorman: Michael Godley
Mrs Budger: Mary Maxted
Dr Slammer: Gerald James
Lt Tappleton: John Patrick
Boots: Peter Richards

Pickwick Papers – Nick Stevens

Pickwick Papers 1 NS Pickwick Papers 2 NS Pickwick Papers 3 NS Pickwick Papers 4 NS Pickwick Papers 5 NS Pickwick Papers 6 NS Pickwick Papers 7 NS







































































(Last photo: Phil Daniels and Nick Stevens)

(Second photo: Dee Hall and Nick Stevens, Dee was the second wife of Terry Hall of Lenny the lion fame )

Copyright resides with the original holders, no reproduction without permission.

I worked a lot for the BBC as a support artist on many dramas in the 1980s and on one occasion did in fact get some photos, this was on the production of Pickwick Papers in 1985. We spent two days in London for rehearsals then back to Pebble Mill for the production. Phil Daniels was a pleasure to work with and so was the late Nigel Stock. There was a scene when the lady with a baby was meant to fall down in the Fleet prison this she did with her real baby, to the shock of the crew. The baby was substituted for a dummy, then cut back to the real baby after she fell. Also I nearly got knocked out by the camera crane! I was walking down a passage in the Fleet prison and the camera mounted on a crane was supposed to come up and follow me. The camera was at a high point as it came up behind me and was dropping to a lower position, but the brakeman on the camera dolly did not judge it correctly and the front of the dolly platform under the camera hit me on the back of the head and shoulders sending me sprawling up the set! It looked funny, but not for me. At the end of each day I travelled back to Burton upon Trent still, with makeup on and looking like a vagrant, if I had been stopped the police would not have believed me as to where I had been!

Nick Stevens

The following comment was left on the Pebble Mill Facebook group:

Stuart Gandy: ‘I remember this from 1985, one of the many period dramas that Pebble Mill was well known for.’

Pickwick Papers – photos by Tim Savage

Photos by Tim Savage, no reproduction without permission.

‘Pickwick Papers’ was a BBC drama series from 1985.  It was hosted at Pebble Mill.  The director was Brian Lighthill, the producer was Barry Letts and the script was written by Terrance Dicks. Bob Chaplin was the lighting designer, Sue Peck and costume designer, Gill Hughes the make-up designer and Myles Lang, the production designer.

The series starred Nigel Stock, Clive Swift (gardening presenter Joe Swift’s father), Jeremy Nicholas, Alan Parnaby, and Colin Douglas.

The first photo features Paul Higton from costume.  The subsequent photos show a horse drawn carriage hired for the shoot. The location was a stately home near Telford.

In the carriage photos (l to r): John Couzens (camera) in navy jumper, centre in blue short-sleeved shirt, Elson Godbolt, Dick Bentley, second from right, it is probably David Robinson, to the right of Dick.