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The Upper Crusts (ITV Sitcom, Charles Gray, Margaret Leighton)



In short lived sitcom The Upper Crusts Lord and Lady Seacroft (Charles Gray and Margaret Leighton) are forced to move into a high rise council flat when their elderly father (also Charles Gray) loses the family fortune. Besides the elder Gray Sr (and he was killed off in the first episode) the other members of the family were daughter Davina (Lalla Ward) and son Gareth (Martin Neil).

This reverse Beverly Hillbillies was written by the always excellent Keith Waterhouse and Willis Hall. There was only the one run of six episodes, later the same year Waterhouse and Hall had a much bigger success with the sitcom revival of their 1963 movie Billy Liar.

Reliable comic characters like Richard Davies and George A. Cooper made appearances as did up and coming talents like Gareth Hunt and Christopher Timothy.

The TV Times covered the shows upcoming premiere in it’s 24 Feb 1973 edition with an interesting feature on real life peers who had changed social standing such as Lord Treviot and Lady Mary who met whilst working as a bus driver and bus conductress. There was also a look at Lord Vere Frederick Cecil Hobart-Hampden who gained a title but absolutely nothing else. He moved to Australia and became a sheep farmer.

Again this is another show that was not fully networked across the ITV regions at the same time, ATV for example beginning their showing of it a month later than Anglia.

Cast: Margaret Leighton as Lady Seacroft; Charles Gray as Lord Seacroft and Lord Seacroft Sr; Lalla Ward as Davina Seacroft; Martin Neil as Gareth Seacroft

Writers: Keith Waterhouse, Willis Hall / Producer and Director: Mark Stuart

UK / ITV – London Weekend Television / 6×30 minute episodes / 25 February – 1 April 1973 Sundays at 9.30pm