For anyone who grew up in the 1980s, Bella Emberg was a television legend. As part of the team on Russ Abbot’s Madhouse, Bella became instantly recognisable, performing a range of comedy sketches in a variety of roles. Although this was what she was best known for, Bella had worked on many other programmes, including Grange Hill. She appeared in several episodes of Series 3, playing a school cleaner (see picture (thanks to these people)). She continued to work until her death in January 2018.
Grange Hill’s 40th anniversary year got off to a great start when Radio Times announced their 50 Greatest Children’s TV Shows of all time. A panel consisting of 30 luminaries from television, including David Walliams, Floella Benjamin and Russell T. Davis took time to consider what made up the very best children’s television. Each member of the panel chose their five favourite kids TV programmes, leaving Radio Times to compile the results, with Grange Hill coming in 2nd place!
You can read the full run down here (Grange Hill appears on page 5), and as Grange Hill comes second only to the legendary Blue Peter, fans need not be too disappointed with the result! What’s more, it means that Tucker Jenkins gets to appear on the cover of Radio Times!
As the first of our celebrations for Grange Hill’s 40th Anniversary, we are delighted to be able to provide visitors with an exclusive interview with Anna Home, the woman who first commissioned Grange Hill for the BBC, and was Executive Producer for the first 4 series.
You can read our interview with Anna here.
As 2018 arrives, Grange Hill celebrates its 40th Birthday. Here at Grange Hill Gold we have a range of celebratory features planned, and news of some very exciting events coming up. We launch the new year with our exclusive birthday logo (see above). Keep visiting GHG throughout 2018 to ensure you don’t miss out on any of the year long celebrations!
Wishing you all a very happy and healthy 2018.
It’s very rare that we mention a programme other than Grange Hill on GHG, but as it’s Christmas, and this has some GH links, we’ll make an exception…….. AND we have a special festive gift for our readers!
As part of our work to persuade DVD companies to release Grange Hill on DVD, we were delighted to discover that another contemporary children’s drama was being released; Jossy’s Giants!
Broadcast in 1986/7, the show is fondly remembered by a generation of football mad kids that grew up in the ’80s. Directed by Edward Pugh (Grange Hill / Byker Grove) and written by much-loved TV personality and darts commentator Sid Waddell.
As a special offer for GHG Readers you can receive a 10% discount when you order Jossy’s Giants on DVD from Simply Home Entertainment. Following the link will automatically take 10% off your order when you visit, or alternatively enter the code GRANGE10 at the checkout.
PROMOTION PROVIDED BY SIMPLY HOME ENTERTAINMENT
As if our interview with Paula Ann Bland wasn’t enough for you, you can hear more from Paula in her recent interview with Mad Wasp Radio’s ‘My 80s Show’. Originally broadcast on 30th November 2017, the show can be listened to on Mixcloud.
As well as picking her Favourite Five 80s Tracks, Paula talks about playing Claire, her love for Duran Duran and her own singing career! The interview starts around 17 minutes in.
Next year, Grange Hill celebrates its 40th anniversary and as part of those celebrations the BBC has gathered together some of the former cast for a special edition of Celebrity Pointless.
Michelle Gayle (Fiona Wilson), Gwyneth Powell (Mrs McClusky), Paula Ann Bland (Claire Scott), Lee Macdonald (Zammo Maguire), Erkan Mustafa (Roland Browning), Francessa Martinez (Rachel Burns), Stuart Organ (Mr Robson), Alison Bettles (Fay Lucas) and Todd Carty (Tucker Jenkins) gathered back at Television Centre in late November to film the special episode. Whilst Erkan, Lee, Gwyneth and Michelle have all appeared before, this was a new experience for the rest.
As well as celebrating Grange Hill’s anniversary, each cast member was aiming to win money for a cause close to their heart. Paula Ann Bland was representing her former co-star Linda Slater’s (Susi McMahon) charity The Good Grief Trust (Keep visiting GHG for a feature on this charity soon). As a result Linda Slater joined her co stars backstage!
A great time was had by all, and whilst we can’t reveal the result, we can reveal that one cast member gave another a pointless answer, whilst another was accused of cheating!
Celebrity Pointless – Grange Hill is set to be broadcast on BBC 1 in 2018.