Last month we were fortunate enough to be able to interview Ricky Simmonds who played the legendary Ant Jones between 1986-7. The character’s constant clashes with Mr Bronson and his romance with Georgina kept viewers glued to Grange Hill. In our exclusive, feature length interview, Ricky reveals which part he originally auditioned for, which co-star he was best-man for, his thoughts on the Just Say No record and the truth behind his infamous hairstyle! He also talks about how he moved from acting into music, and how he even tempted Mr Bronson to make a record with him!
This is Ricky’s first interview about Grange Hill for many years, and we were delighted to be able to finally secure an interview with him. Huge thanks to Ricky for taking time to talk to us, and for being reminiscing with us about his great times at Grange Hill.
Read our brand new interview here.
As part of our new content for 2017, Grange Hill Gold visitors can look forward to a brand new and exclusive interview with Ricky Simmonds who played Ant Jones between 1986-1987. Ricky talks about his Grange Hill memories, including revealing the part he originally auditioned for, and tells us about his career in the music business. He also talks about his role in the CFF movie Pop Pirates and the legendary Ant Jones hair!
Keep visiting Grange Hill Gold to read this interview as soon as it goes on-line in the next few weeks.
Throughout the 1980s, Grange Hill was one of the most popular television programmes broadcast before 6pm on BBC1. A high number of viewers meant that the cast would receive a lot of fan-mail and so the BBC put together a set of promotional cast cards, that the cast could autograph and then send out in response to any fan-mail. It is thought that this began with Series 4, but became a mainstay of the production from Series 6 onwards. Depending on the popularity of a character, some cast cards were produced in larger numbers, whilst it is thought that some cast did not have a cast card at all!
Some are easy to find and relatively common, whilst others were produced in smaller batches and are much harder to track down. There is in fact no complete list of which cast cards were actually printed. Here at GrangeHillGold we have spent huge amounts of time trying to locate these cast-cards and include them on our site.
Earlier this year we were fortunate enough to be given scans of lots of missing cards from Series 6 and Series 9 , by the amazing Scott Frankton, which you can find by clicking on the links. As an end of year treat have put them on-line for you to enjoy.
If you have any cast cards you think we might be missing and are happy to scan them for our collection, please do not hesitate to contact us.
As promised many years ago, our interview with Graham Wynn aka Mr Graham ‘Sooty’ Sutcliffe finally went on-line earlier this year. If you haven’t read it yet, you can find it here.
Other ‘lost’ interviews we hope to publish soon include Margo Selby (Julie Corrigan), Chris Jury (Mr Knowles) and Anna Holme (The head of Children’s Television who commissioned Grange Hill). Keep your eyes open over the next year as we finally unleash these gems.
Grange Hill legends Robbie Wright and Ziggy Greaves made a dynamic duo during their time at Britain’s favourite secondary school. In November this year, actors John Alford and George Christopher were reunited for a Grange Hill event in Great Yarmouth.
Organised by friends of George Christopher, the event took place at the Pier Tavern on November 4th, and featured a live Q&A session with John and George, as well as autograph and photo opportunities with the pair.
What was clear from this enjoyable event was how George and John’s friendship, developed on screen in the 80s, was just as strong today.
Happy to discuss their memories of
working together at Grange Hill, the duo were keen to make the event a success and chatted to guests throughout the evening, as well as having photos taken by the professional photographer.
During the Q&A subjects up for discussion, besides Grange Hill, included John’s music career (and George’s cameo in his video), George’s time on Brookside and John’s feelings about the recent conviction of the ‘Fake Sheikh’ who sabotaged John’s acting career.
The success of the event was mainly due to George and John themselves; their lively and warm personalities made everyone feel welcome, whilst their own delight at being reunited was shared by all who attended.
On Saturday 16th July, the Misty Moon Film Society held one of their events in London; this time focusing on Grange Hill’s Zammo (aka Lee McDonald). Discussing his career, in particular his time on Grange Hill, Lee was surprised on stage when ex co-stars Nadia Chambers and Mark Savage arrived.
Simon Streek was fortunate enough to attend the event and you can read his report here.
We are very excited to finally be able to preview our exclusive interview with James Wynn who played teacher Mr Graham ‘Sooty’ Sutcliffe, throughout Grange Hill’s early years. Regular visitors will know that we have been promising this for years; ever since we were fortunate enough to interview James way back in 2007!
Recording the interview on a C90 cassette, we had every intention of publishing it…… until the un-labelled cassette disappeared during a house move! Now, years later, we have finally tracked down the tape (and something to play it on)in the Grange Hill Gold vault! Expect the interview to hit your screens very, very soon!