Clarence (BBC-2 1988, Ronnie Barker, Josephine Tewson)

One of Ronnie Barker’s lesser known sitcoms but definitely up there amongst his most enjoyable, set in a wonderfully realised 1930’s Clarence, made in 1988 sees Barker playing the myopic removal man of the title who runs his own small scale business called Get a Move On.

His life changes when he meets down on her luck parlourmaid Jane Travers (Barker regular Josephine Tewson), the pair begin a hesitant relationship and when she inherits a run down cottage out in the Oxfordshire countryside the two of them move in together.

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Much of the humour across the six episodes stems from Clarence trying to persuade the demure Jane to hop into bed with him and also of course his shocking short-sightedness, very much a real life Mr Magoo; As well as Clarence and Jane coming to terms with their new country life style.

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This charming, albeit short lived sitcom, was written by Barker himself under the pseudonym Bob Ferris (actually the name of one of the lead characters in Clement and La Frenais classic The Likely Lads).

production details
UK / BBC-2 / 6×30 minute episodes / Broadcast 4 January – 8 February 1988

Writer: Bob Ferris aka Ronnie Barker / Production Design: John Bristow / Producer and Director: Mike Stephens

Ronnie Barker as Clarence Sale
Josephine Tewson as Jane Travers

Alastair James is the editor in chief for Memorable TV. He has been involved in media since his university days. Alastair is passionate about television, and some of his favourite shows include Line of Duty, Luther and Traitors. He is always on the lookout for hot new shows, and is always keen to share his knowledge with others.