Raymond Allen (scriptwriter)

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Raymond Allen (born March 1940, Ryde, Isle of Wight)[1] is a British television writer best known for creating the 1970s sitcom Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em.

Early life[edit]

He attended Ryde Secondary Modern School on the Isle of Wight, where he started to want to write. When he left school, he started out as a cub reporter for the old Isle of Wight Times at the age of 16. After service in the RAF, he returned to the Island and took low-paying menial jobs washing dishes in hotels and cleaning at Shanklin's Regal Cinema, so that with some financial help from his parents, he could continue to write.

He wrote around 40 serious plays – and was knocked back with 40 serious rejections – before turning "in desperation" to comedy sketch writing. His first sit-com was rejected by ITV, but he had another sit-com script already written, which he sent to the BBC which was Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em. His one-off script was bought by the BBC – who instantly asked him to write six more. Two more series followed.

Subsequently Allen sold some one-off plays, but found his one sit-com success had cast too big a shadow over any new ones he tried.[2]

Filmography[edit]

He also contributed writing to 9 episodes of The Little and Large Show.[1]

Current life[edit]

He lives in Ryde (on the Isle of Wight),[3] no more than a mile from where he was born.

He is a regular at the Wight Writers Group, and likes to attend writers’ weekends.

He has been working on a stage play for a couple of years, but is not currently writing for television.

From time to time he still gets asked to do talks on the series.[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Information from IMDB http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0020934/
  2. ^ a b “Comedy is someone else’s embarrassment or tragedy” Jackie McCarrick talks to Frank Spencer creator Raymond Allen http://www.isleofwight.net/article.asp?id=26
  3. ^ Letter received from Raymond Allen, dated 1 June 2009, with his address on it – his reference: RA/SM/09