Hello people and pooches. Joe the Cocker here again. While we are in a lockdown situation due to the pandemic, we are staying close to home to do our walks. My human told me that a TV comedy series was based in our town before I was born. He suggested that we go for a wander around some of the filming locations one Sunday morning in November. So, that’s what we did, and this is our story.
2 Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps is an irreverent sitcom that ran from 2001 for nine seasons. The name of the programme comes from the 1980’s single B side of the same name recorded by Splodgenessabounds. It was written by local girl Susan Nickson about a group of friends living in Runcorn. It starred Sheridan Smith, Ralf Little, Will Mellor, Natalie Casey, Kathryn Drysdale, Beverley Callard and Luke Gell. Susan Nickson was 18 years old when she first started to write the series. She has also written Grownups, Twisted Tales and Carry on Doctors plus episodes of Birds of a Feather. She has also produced some of these TV shows.
The opening credits featured a view of the iconic Silver Jubilee Bridge that spans the River Mersey and Manchester Ship Canal from Runcorn to Widnes. Fiddler’s Ferry Power Station on the Widnes side of the Mersey is also shown. Halton Castle ruins also feature in the opening sequence.
We started our walk from home and headed to Top Locks where the first the filming location is situated. The pub known as The Archer was at the time of filming actually called The Waterloo Hotel. Nowadays it is a Buddhist Temple known as Wat Phra Singh. The exterior of the pub is used in the series with the indoor scenes being recorded at the BBC studios in London.
We walked through some of the side streets until we arrived at another pub that was used in the first series. In Egerton street is The Wellington pub. In the series it was known as ‘The Mayhew’. The pub lost favour in the early days, maybe because The Mayhew served the worst lager imaginable being two thirds froth.
My human likes to sing when we are walking but, this time, all he kept mumbling was ‘2 Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps, Please! He is unbelievably annoying. Learn some lyrics, dad!
Our next destination took us under the railway bridge and into Dukesfield. The car workshop, Brindley Auto’s, that Gaz worked in is situated ‘under the arches’ of the railway bridge on Brindley Street. Nowadays it is known as Arch Motors and is still a car repair business.
Bridges Chip Shop was located on the corner of Brindley Street and Cawdor Street a few hundred yards from the garage. It was for a long while a Chinese Takeaway but, is currently empty and up for sale.
A short walk from Arch Motors along Lord Street is the town centre bakery where Janet worked. It is currently a Pound Bakery located at 30 Church Street.
Across Church Street is Alcock Street by the Market Hall where Gaz and Donna’s flat was located in the series.
From Alcock Street we crossed High Street to Bank Chambers, the nightclub where Janet and Jonny met for the first time.
For our next filming location visit we cheated a little due to its distance from the ‘old town’. Janet and Jonny’s house was located at 9 Clarks Terrace in Weston Point.
It had been a short walk into town and my human seemed to enjoy checking out the locations of one of the town’s more unusual sides. Till nest time!