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Tickle on the Tum

1 9 8 4 – 1 9 8 8 (UK)
118 x 10 minute episodes

Former folk singer Ralph (Streets of London) McTell settled town in a town called Tickle on the banks of the River Tum and set up shop in the General Store-cum-Post Office where he was assisted by Danny (Danusia Harwood).

Various eccentric inhabitants of Tickle visited the shop to buy something or post a letter and tell stories about their jobs and lives.

A smorgasbord of guest stars appeared as “residents”, including Dora the bus driver (Penelope Keith), Dr Dimple (Bill Oddie), post woman Winnie Walker (Madge Hindle), laundrette owner Bessie Bagwash (Mollie Sugden), policewoman Connie Caper (Carry On legend Joan Sims), pet shop owner Bunny Brown (Nerys Hughes), bargain builder Barnie Bodger (Tim Healy from Auf Wiedersehen Pet), Chip shop owner Willie Wok (Bert Kwouk), Mike the Milkman (Kenny Lynch) and village dustman/part-time inventor Bobby Bins (Billy Connoly).

When Connolly left after just two episodes, his character was replaced by the similar Tommy Tidy (William Rushton).

Following the conclusion of each story, there was a quick round of jokes sent in from school children (“What do you a give a pig when it’s ill?” “Oinkment!”) and Ralph would pull out his guitar – or occasionally a banjo – to perform a song relating to that week’s story.

Danny was eventually replaced by Jacqui (Jacqueline Reddin), and by the final series, Ralph had gone and Jacqui now worked at the new Tickle Broadcasting Corporation studios where she was joined by Dexter, a puppet cat (John Eccleston).

A total of four series of Tickle on the Tum were produced by Granada Television. The show was broadcast as part of the Children’s ITV schedule with episodes airing in both the lunchtime and late afternoon slots.

Ralph McTell
Danusia Harwood
Jacqueline Reddin
Barney Bodger
Tim Healy
Dr Dimple
Bill Oddie
Farmer Field
John Wells
Roland Crust
Billy Dainty
Lily Lolly
Bertice Reading
Bobby Binns
Billy Connolly
Tommy Tidy
William Rushton
Bessie Bagwash
Mollie Sugden
Dora the Driver
Penelope Keith
Winnie Walker
Madge Hindle
Connie Caper
Joan Sims
Miss Marker
Susan Wooldridge
Freddie the Fireman
Graham Stark
Bunny Brown
Nerys Hughes
Miss Dibbs
Patricia Brake
Mike the Milkman
Kenny Lynch
Mrs Cravat
Barbara Lott
Mayor Choudhury
Zia Mohyeddin
Mickey Moon
Adam Sunderland
Gary Ball
Brian Bovell
Willie Wok
Burt Kwouk
Dexter the Cat
John Eccleston