Steve Weddle remembered by Steph Silk

Marian Foster with Steve Weddle

Today [8th April 2020] is Steve Weddle’s funeral and from a distance I mourn the shocking devastating loss of a lifetime friend. In 1976 we were both new researchers, desk to desk in the hairy scary Dobson days of PM@1. All the producers and directors were male and all the researchers except Steve were female – that’s what it was like in those days. Never macho, Steve quickly became one of the girls to the extent that his name was on the office PMT wall-chart.

First and foremost, Steve was fun. He was of course talented and creative, wacky and wonderful and super sociable but he also had great empathy and kindness and was friends with one and all. He gave my daughter her TV break and passed on his Spurs programmes to my grandson.

Recently we had two lovely holidays at the Exotic Marigold Hotel in Menorca. Steve, a great holiday companion, suggested that we should travel as Hinge and Bracket.

Post Beeb we met up every month with our fellow Sagalouts to wine and dine down Memory Lane. In January we celebrated his 70th birthday. In February Steve talked about his latest book, not an autobiography exactly but drawing on his life in television.
That would have been a good read.

Stephanie Silk

Steve Weddle by John Williams

Daytime Live special 1990, ‘My Name is Jane’, audience photo. Copyright resides with the original holder, no reproduction without permission.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The whole country is in a state of shock, but shock associated with the sudden loss of losing someone close concentrates the mind wonderfully and I recognise all the comments that have poured out on Facebook regarding Steve Weddle’s death. They do tick all the boxes. This is what happened to me when our son had a stroke and ended up in Worcester hospital fighting for his life.  As a therapy I used the time to write, “Shoot First No Ordinary life,” the story of my BBC career at Pebble Mill which many of you have read.

What a character Steve was and yes taken far too young, for he had much more to offer this life. There were things about him I could never get my head round, like rushing off to London with only the flimsiest of reasons to find time with Hot Spurs or some name like that. There were his books of course, and BBC pensioners meeting every month will certainly not be the same without him, especially as he always dominated the Raffle presentations. But there was much more to this larger than life character than meets the eye, especially for me personally.

As editor of Daytime Live behind all the facade and bonhomie was someone who was deep, showed great courage in his work, often moving where many ‘feared to tread’, even prepared to gamble. Continue reading

Working in Television – Steve Weddle

Copyright resides with the original holder, no reproduction without permission

This interview with Steve Weddle is from a 1980 book called ‘Working in Television’, by Jan Leeming. It gives a fascinating insight into the life of a researcher on Pebble Mill at One.

Thanks to Jonathan Dick for sharing the excerpt.

The following comment was added on the Pebble Mill Facebook page:

Steve Weddle: ‘I do remember writing this for Jan’s book, Working In Television. She very kindly said a few positive things about me in the preface, without money changing hands, for which I was most grateful. There were a number of ex-Pebble Millers featured in the book, including Mike Bloor, who I discovered from his piece, used to be a postman. It was really a guide on how to get into television in the 1970’s, when oopprtunities were limited, mainly becuase there were only three channels, and no such thing as indies. Jan Leeming used to present on the original Pebble Mill at One, before going on to find even more fame and fortune as a Newsreader on the BBC National Bulletins. She was a lovely lady who is still going strong, most recently on I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here.’

Goodbye to Pebble Mill

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

Goodbye Pebble Mill was transmitted on BBC1 in 2004, as a tribute to production at Pebble Mill, as the building closed prior to demolition. It is introduced by Toyah Wilcox and features highlights from Pebble Mill programmes and interviews with many stars.

Robert Hardy dies aged 91

All Creatures Great and Small 1989. Copyright resides with the original holder, no reproduction without permission.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Actor, Robert Hardy, who played Siegfried (centre in the photo above) in All Creatures Great and Small’ died 3rd August 2017, he was 91. Hardy was born in Cheltenham in October 1925. He gained a BA from Oxford in English Literature, after being conscripted into the RAF during the war. He became an actor who could play a wide range of parts. Below is an excerpt from his obituary on the BBC website:

‘In 1978, Hardy took the part of the irascible but good-natured Siegfried Farnon in All Creatures Great and Small, the long-running BBC series based on James Herriot’s best-selling books.

As the senior vet of the small Yorkshire Dales practice, Robert Hardy became one of the best-known faces on British television.

Full of animals, nostalgia and rural scenery, the show became a massive hit, attracting audiences of up to 20 million.

The original run ended in 1978 but the series was revived 10 years later after the BBC obtained permission to write new storylines, having exhausted the original James Herriot books.

But the new scripts failed to meet with Hardy’s approval and he rewrote large parts of his dialogue. “All they did was make Siegfried explode and be bad-tempered. I kept changing things.”‘

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-13783739

The following comments were left on the Pebble Mill Facebook page:

Keith Brook (Scouse): ‘What a bloody brilliant actor. Never forgot a line, could always find his light or see when he was shadowing someone, and could hit a mark in the middle of nowhere, every time. Occasionally, he’d even hold a line until the camera was ready! His rhythm and pacing were wonderful and repeatable. A true delight to work with.’

John Evans: ‘You suspect he was playing himself in All Creatures Great and Small.What a great part he played with such presence and humour.I always liked to watch him.’

Steve Weddle: ‘One of the greats of British acting, and a great advocate for Pebble Mill. He always approved of All Creatures being made at PM. He was one of us.’

Robin Sunderland: ‘You always knew when Robert was in a scene…. consummate professional!’

Andy Tylee: ‘ I recall him in Age of Kings playing prince hall opposite Sean Connery as hotspur. Also he was a leading authority on the English longbow.

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