Friday 1 August 2014

Flashback Friday - Portland Bill

Oh come with me to the rolling sea
While the weathers calm and still.
And we'll have some fun and laughter with
The adventures of Portland Bill.

This animation aired in 1983 (as I was only born in 1982 and remember it fondly I guess it was repeats that I remember). It featured 26 x 11 minute programmes, each programme consisting of 2 x 5 min episodes.
Portland Bill is the keeper of the Trinity House lighthouse, on Guillermot Rock, he is ably assisted (or not) by red-capped Ross and goatee bearded Cromarty. Lets not forget Dogger - Bill's pet pooch.

Life in the lighthouse is never dull, there is always repairs or cleaning to do, storms to weather and inspections to pass. Then throw in the visiting mermaids and ghostly penguins. However they still need to eat and live so every so often Bill takes his old rowboat, The Puffin, over to the mainland, and the seaside village of McGuillycuddy.  Here he would stock up on provisions from Eddy Stone's store, and catch up on all the village happenings with Grandma Tiree, the crofter Finisterre, Fastnet the fisherman and old Mrs Lundy.

It's only now I'm older that I can tell all the characters in the series take their names from the shipping forecast and/or British sea regions and nautical terms.

Some of the characters

Portland Bill is the light house keeper in charge of Guillemot Rock and responsible for the day to day running of said light house. He plays the Bagpipes loudly and is often seen rowing his boat called The Puffin.

Ross is the youngest member of the lighthouse crew. He is sometimes a
little absent minded but is honest and a good friend of Bills. He can play the drums and loves fishing. .

Cromarty is older than Ross and second in command. He always tries to do things quick and easy and often causes more trouble by trying to invent things. He plays the electric guitar

Dogger is Bill's dog and often goes with him to the mainland. He hates music especially when played badly by Cromarty and Co. 

Finisterre owns a croft on the mainland, he plays an acoustic guitar and tried to form a band with Cromarty.

Eddy Stone runs the village store, he is also the local electrician, postman, milkman, policeman, mayor, meterman and waterboard inspector!  How do you know which professional he is?  he changes his hats (which he happens to keep on the front of his bike).  If Bill isn't visiting him then he can be seen on board The Kipper, his boat, taking supplies out to the lighthouse.

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