Camberwick Green

BBC (ended 1966)




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Camberwick Green

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For Brits of a certain age, Camberwick Green is a programme guaranteed to spark nostalgia. At the start of each episode, we saw a tall, hexagonal box sitting on a table. This was to be our way in to the charmingly old-fashioned world of Windy Miller, Mrs Honeyman the gossip, PC McGarry ("number four! five! two!") and the rest. Here is a box, a musical box, Wound up and ready to play. But this box can hide A secret inside. Can you guess what is in it today? And from the box would emerge one of the residents of Camberwick Green. Following a brief chat between the narrator (Brian Cant) and the character (who would respond to Cant's questions silently with nods, shrugs and shakes of the head), the scene mixed through into Camberwick Green itself - a quiet country village with all the basic amenities (bakery, butcher, garage) and, in the land surrounding it, Windy Miller's windmill, Jonathan Bell's farm and the army fort commanded by Captain Snort, whose personnel seemed to spend most of their time doing odd jobs for the villagers. Although Camberwick Green was looking back to a bygone era even in 1966, its olde-worlde charm still stands up well today. The animators, Bura & Hardwick, were shrewd enough to film the whole series in colour (even though British TV was still resolutely monochrome at the time), ensuring regular repeats for the series for over twenty years. Two generations grew up with the characters of Camberwick Green and its sequels, Trumpton and Chigley, and it remains one of the true classics of British television.moreless