1 9 6 9 – 1 9 7 2 (UK)
26 x 30 minute episodes
3 x short specials
Three years after the end of The Likely Lads Rodney Bewes again tasted sitcom success.
This time it was with a series which he not merely starred in but also (with Derrick Goodwin) wrote and produced. He also sang the theme song which he co-wrote with Mike Hugg.
The concept came from Bewes’ real-life letters home to his mother, reporting on recent events in his life.
Correspondingly, the series – which debuted on Monday 15 September 1969 – cast him as bemused Albert Courtnay, a 24-year-old innocent northern lad – dim but cunning enough to get by – who moves to London and manages to scrape a living but romanticises and exaggerates his success and experiences in euphemistic letters home to his mum.
Sheila White played Vivian, Albert’s landlady’s daughter, sharp and smart, rapping out her backstreet repartee and horrifying her genteel mother (Geraldine Newman).
Albert eventually found work with a confectionery company, and at the end of the second series, he moved into a flat with two dolly birds.
At the start of the third series, he was in love and about to become engaged to Doreen Bissel (Liz Gebhardt).
Unusually, Dear Mother . . . Love Albert switched production companies from Thames to Yorkshire TV during its run.
It also spawned a 1972 sequel – titled simply Albert! and made by Yorkshire Television – by the end of which Courtnay had been given the sack from the confectioner, and Doreen had severed their engagement.
Garfield Morgan co-starred as Albert’s boss, A.C.Strain.
A C Strain