Thursday, 3 November 2011

What We're Gonna Do Right Here Is Go Back - #1 Grange Hill Honeys

I've been watching the whole of the legendary BBC1 kids drama, Grange Hill since the early part of this year. But more importantly my daughter has become a confirmed fan and relishes each episode.
We've just finished series 9 which - as many agree - is regarded as the Golden Age of GH.
Yes, the school fire, asbestos, fibre-glass attacks, Imelda and her Terrahawks gang, Ant Jones' singling-out by Mr Bronson, Miss Partridge the single mother (shock, horror), Fay and Mr King's exra-curricular liasons, the return of the school magazine, the Speaking Wall, Danny Kendal, Gonch & Hollo, new boy Ziggy Greaves, Gonch's Toast Bar, and course this series was the one that followed Zammo's downward spiral as he fell victim to a heroin addiction and subsequently found by Ro-land in the video arcade back room.

Ahhhh. Them were the days.
My daughters' eyes are constantly out on stalks whenever the scene is set in the school canteen as back in those days schoolkids could quite happily munch on crisps, Mars Bars and sip on Coke without being told to 'eat more healthily'. There was even salt, pepper, vinegar and a bottle of Heinz on them dinner tables!

For me though I must've stopped watching Grange Hill by about the 12th series in 1989. I know that later on it all went a bit poncey and I can recall that one teacher walked around the halls with some sort of early version of an iPad - this would've been in the early 2000's. The show always seemed to be banging on about softer subjects and the importance of being eco-friendly and 'green'. Never again would the 'Hill feature as hard-hitting a subject as drug abuse ever again.

Tell 'em about the honey, mummy.
Now, while I've been watching Series 12 I've noticed that there have been quite a lot of easy-on-the-eye ladies moreso than in earlier episodes. I remember harbouring a secret crush on Julia Glover (her dad was a busybody PTA member) as well as Georgina Hayes who was the love-interest of new-boy Ant 'Quiff/Mullet' Jones.
Of course I fancied Zammo's squeeze, Jackie Wright - who didn't? But then there was Caroline 'Calley' Donnington who really blossomed in later years (and subsequently dated film director Michael Winner!). And of course, before this there was Claire Scott who was going out with Stewpot. Who remembers what became of her? She did some modelling I seem to recall....

Watching Grange Hill seems to have been a rite-of-passage to most of us in that late 30's/early 40's stage. I couldn't say if it was as important to teenagers during it's last few years in the 2000's as it was to me when I was originally watching Series 9 aged 15. Probably not.

Anyhoo, I found a batch of pictures of some of the cast of GH at some reunion recently and thought I'd do a 'then and now' of some of the laydeez.
So below I present some of the Grange Hill Honeyz. Can you remember them all?
I didn't include Georgina as I couldn't locate a current pic of her, sadly.
And Imelda....? Hells yeah!


ramses said...

Ah, the Hill. I think I must've watched almost every episode when I was growing up (as I remember I stopped watching round about the time of the Grid Irn crew), I remember watching an episode a few years after and it had INCIDENTAL MUSIC for God's sake!

Yeah Jackie was the one for me (and still is by the look of your pic!), there was another girl that I used to like too but I can't remember her name - Lisa springs to mind but I'm not sure if that was her character name or real name.

Great memories!

Danny Kendles Counsillor said...

Dear sirs

Van Damn! Homeys STILL be crack-a-lackin' about Jackie from GH vs Ice T's DARLENE! She looks gooo-oood in them pictures... However, I have to open a debate. Due to the fact that we were roughly the same age as the characters in GH at the time it was broadcast, in our 40ish minds LOOKING BACK we still fancy them. Are we NONCES??? Holy internet grooming batman he said NONCES!!!

Let's see who's brave enough to say the old pics of GH SCHOOL GIRLS still cause panic in their pants!!!

On a side note I have imagined a world where Mr.Bronson & Danny Kendall are in a "well hidden by constant arguments" torrid man-boy love affair. I have discussed this with the lads from the Big Fat Hip Hop Radio show and we all concur that Mr.Bronson was regularly kicking Danny's back doors in.

What else? Yep, the shocking scene where Zammo is desperately trying to pick his gear up off the floor is seared into my napper to this day... I shall revisit the series soon (*ahem, Cough, after you Repo!) and no doubt put my views on one of those internets they're selling down Woolleys at the moment, next to the 7 inch singles.

GH Babes, please sir, a request... A Hi res PDF of that copy of Mayfair "For research purposes only".

PS, Funny how the opening sequence in Grange Hill has an aspect in it which has been regularly repeated in many videos I've seen since, namely a random sausage entering the scene. That is all.

Lord Summerisle said...

@ Ramses - Grid Irn Crew? Incidental music??? Chrrrist, looks like we got out at the right time!
The girl in the 5th box along is called LISA York (character name: Julie Marchant).

@ Mr Kendall's Counsellor - Don't think for one moment this same thought hadn't crossed my mind. This is a real humdinger of a situation and no mistake.

After much thought I would venture that it IS okay to say we fancy them. That is to say that we KNOW they were kids then but we fancied them when we too were kids and as such we are looking at them now through teenage eyes....or something... Gaaahhh! Nonce alert!

I'm not sure I concur with the illicit Kendall/Bronson beast with two backs imagery you are conjuring up, sir. I'm imagining a dans toupee, bald Maurice Bronson gently yet forcefully beckoning young Danny over to his double-divan whereupon he whimpers at him cries of sorrow and remorse as he bends over and receives 6 of the best with a rubber love-toy from the pug-faced midget.

I'm on the lookout for a PDF of the aforementioned bongo mag but so far no dice. Will of course spread the word if ever I become successful.

Sausages in videos are indeed commonplace these days thanks to the 'Hill. And furburgers, too - though sadly far less fur than 'back in the day'.
On a related note, are we soon to see not only the disappearance altogether of 'muff' itself but the name also? I mean, you won't be able to say 'hmmm, nice muff' when she plainly doesn't even own one.

ramses said...

Lisa York, of course! While we're on the GH tip, do you remember that Give Us A Clue used to have the same theme? (Incidentally the theme was written by library music legend Alan Hawkshaw, who played the keyboards on The Champ. Fact!)

And yes, it is a shame that there isn't more "fur" in the world today.

Dice said...

Where are you getting the series from i have ony ever seen series 1 and 2 for sale would love to watch them all again my fav is when they go to the zoo on the school trip. happy days

Lord Summerisle said...

I grabbed most of them from a file-sharing site earlier in the year

For some reason my Grange Hill bookmark now links to a page for flowers on this site....

Anonymous said...

Hey.. Who is the girl in the seventh picture

Anonymous said...

That's Julia Glover played by Saran McGlasson

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