1 9 5 8 – 1 9 6 0 (UK)
24 x 30 minute episodes
1 9 6 3 – 1 9 6 4 (UK)
15 x 30 minute episodes
Builder’s clerk Fred Robinson created The Larkins for an amateur dramatics group at a boys club in Haringey, North London, but the irrepressible Cockney family soon became national favourites when they were introduced to television.
Ada Larkins (Peggy Mount) was the ruler of the family, a hard-as-nails battleaxe outwardly but really kind-hearted and always ready with a helping hand.
Hen-pecked but shrewd husband Alf (David Kossoff) worked in the canteen at a plastics factory and was always complaining and suffering, and ready for any excuse to slip down to the local pub with the boys.
The couple lived at 66 Sycamore Street, somewhere in the London suburbs, with unemployable son Eddie (Shaun O’Riordan), daughter Joyce (Ruth Trouncer), and her American husband, Jeff Rogers (Ronan O’Casey), an out-of-work writer of cowboy comics.
Also seen were snoopy neighbour Hetty Prout (Barbara Mitchell), her husband Sam (George Roderick), and their daughter, Myrtle (Hilary Bamberger).
Together they found themselves in a variety of farcical situations that proved popular with viewers at the turn of the 1960s, so much so that a spin-off film, Inn For Trouble, was released which saw the Larkins in charge of a country pub.
In the last series, shown three years after the main run, Sycamore Street had been demolished, Alf and Ada (now alone) took over a nearby cafe and gained a lodger, Osbert Rigby-Soames (Hugh Paddick).
Produced by Alan Tarrant for the ITC television organisation.
Major Osbert Rigby-Soames