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Chuckle Brothers

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"Paul Elliot" redirects here. For Paul Elliott, see Paul Elliott (disambiguation).
The Chuckle Brothers
Alice 2008 and Chuckle Brothers 028.jpg
Paul (left) and Barry (right) in 2008
Born Barry David Elliott
(1944-12-24) 24 December 1944 (age 70)
Paul Harman Elliott
(1947-10-18) 18 October 1947 (age 68)
Rotherham, West Riding of Yorkshire,
Medium Television and stage
Years active 1974–present
Genres Slapstick and parody
Notable works and roles ChuckleHounds (1985–86)
ChuckleVision (1987–2009)
To Me... To You... (1996–98)
ChuckleMaths (2009)

Barry David Elliott[1] (born 24 December 1944) and Paul Harman Elliott[2] (born 18 October 1947), better known as Barry Chuckle and Paul Chuckle as part of the double-act the Chuckle Brothers, are English children's entertainers. They are best known for their work on their BBC show ChuckleVision, which celebrated its 21st series in 2010 with a stage tour titled An Audience with the Chuckle Brothers. The comedy of the Chuckle Brothers usually derives from slapstick and other visual gags, and their catchphrases include "To me, to you" and "Oh dear, oh dear".

Early life[edit]

The brothers were born in Rotherham to Amy and James Patton Elliott, in 1944 and 1947. Their father was a well-known Gang Show performer whose stage name was Gene Patton; he worked with the 18-year-old Peter Sellers in 1943 in The No. 10 Gang and gave performances in London, Orkney and the Hebrides, Iceland, the Far East, India, and Burma. They have elder brothers called Jimmy and Brian, who are known professionally as the Patton Brothers and who have appeared in Chucklevision, Jimmy as the nameless character known colloquially as "No Slacking", and Brian as another unnamed character known as "Geroutofit".[3]

Prior to becoming an entertainer, Paul's first job was working in a Sheffield steelworks.[4]



The Chuckle Brothers won the television talent show Opportunity Knocks in 1967, followed by success on New Faces in 1974.[5] In the late 1970s and early 1980s, the four brothers appeared as a quartet on TV. They did not have further success until the launch of the BBC television show, Chuckle Hounds, in 1985. These short programmes, which were aimed at pre-school children and contained no dialogue, had the brothers dressed up in giant dog costumes. In 1987, the Brothers began their most famous show, ChuckleVision, which lasted for twenty-one series over twenty-two years. The series ended its run in December 2009. In 1998, ChuckleVision was nominated for a Children's BAFTA Award in the category "Best Children's Television Series". Jimmy and Brian Patton, the Chuckles' real-life brothers, made regular appearances in the show. [6]

From 1996 to 1998 the Chuckle Brothers also presented a children's game show titled To Me, To You!, named after their signature catchphrase. The format, which incorporated a "treasure island" theme, involved two teams who participated in rounds competing for prizes on a shopping trolley (which was made to resemble a bamboo structure). By rolling a die, the teams had to draw the trolley to their end of the playing board; the "squares" on the path to both ends represented challenges. When this was achieved, new prizes were added to the trolley, which was reset to the middle of the board.[7]

In May 2008, the brothers appeared in the BBC documentary series Comedy Map of Britain. They appeared in the TV series Celebrity Coach Trip in November 2010 and won the show, lasting the whole trip.[8] In November 2011, they starred in a series of TV advertisements for the UK-based van insurance comparison website, Van Compare.[9] In October 2012, they appeared on Comedy World Cup on Channel 4. On 15 March 2013, they were featured in David Walliams' sketch for Comic Relief, in which Walliams knocked on the brothers' door with important information to give to them; Paul responded with "To me?"[10]

In the 2013 Christmas special of Still Open All Hours, Barry appeared as the dog owner Mr Marshall.[11]


As well as regular TV appearances, Paul and Barry have appeared on stage in venues across the UK. Their past comedy and parody shows have included The Blackpool Tower Circus (1974), a pantomime based on Aladdin (1985), The Adventures of the Chuckle Brothers, The Chuckle Brothers in – Trouble at Sea, Raiders of the Lost Bark, Barry Potty and his Smarter Brother Paul in the Chamber of Horrors, Star Doors, Pirates of the River Rother, Doctor What & the Return of the Garlics, Spooky Goings On and Spooky Goings On 2. Live recordings of Pirates of the River Rother and Spooky Goings On 2 were released on home video in 2007, the latter under the title The Chuckle Brothers – Spooky Goings On Live![12]

From November to December 2006, they completed a nationwide tour of their Aladdin pantomime; Barry starred as Aladdin and Paul as brother Wishie Washee. The pantomime also starred dancing group The Chucklettes and illusionists Safire, with Simon Harvey appearing as Abanazar, Luke Jasztal as Widow Twankey, Charlotte Sullivan as So Shi and Amanda Poyner as Princess Jasmine. Choreography for the show was devised by Debbie Baggott, the Chuckle Brothers' niece and director of the Debonair Dance Academy,[13] of which the Chucklettes are members.[14]

The brothers' 2008 tour, Indiana Chuckles and The Kingdom of the Mythical Sulk, set in Ancient Egypt, was a parody of the Indiana Jones films. Safire joined them again, making it their sixth outing with the brothers; the Patton Brothers also returned. It was released as a DVD, as with Pirates of the River Rother and Spooky Goings On 2.[15] For Christmas 2008, the brothers appeared in Aladdin at the Cliffs Pavilion in Southend-on-Sea.[16]

A new show – Chuckle Trek – The Lost Generation, a science-fiction parody – toured in 2009.[17] For Christmas that year, the Chuckle Brothers toured with the pantomime A Christmas Chuckle. In 2010, the brothers toured the UK with a special 21st-anniversary show, An Audience With The Chuckle Brothers, which contained a selection of comedy sketches and a question-and-answer session with the audience. In 2011, the brothers, along with the Patton Brothers and Safire, toured with Barry Potter and his Full Blood Brother Paul in The Ghostly Shadows, another Harry Potter parody. In December 2011, they starred in the pantomime Cinderella in Hull. On 7 April 2013, they opened The Chuckle Brothers Meet The Phantom at the Theatre! at Cliff's Pavilion, Southend.[18]

Television appearances[edit]

Live performances[edit]

  • To You, To Me (1995)
  • Live And In Trouble (1996)
  • The Chuckle Brothers Summer Roadshow (1997)
  • The Adventures of the Chuckle Brothers (1998)
  • Trouble At Sea (1999)
  • The New Adventures of the Chuckle Brothers (2000)
  • Spooky Goings On (2001)
  • Raiders of the Lost Bark (2002)
  • Aladdin (Christmas pantomime, Stoke-on-Trent, 2002)
  • Star Doors — The Chuckles Strike Back (2003)
  • Barry Potty and his Smarter Brother Paul in The Chamber of Horrors (2004)
  • Pirates of the River Rother (2005)
  • Doctor What & The Return of the Garlics (2006)
  • Spooky Goings On 2 (2007)
  • Indiana Chuckles and The Kingdom of the Mythical Sulk (2008)
  • Aladdin (Christmas pantomime, 2008)
  • Chuckle Trek  — The Lost Generation (2009)
  • A Christmas Chuckle (Christmas pantomime, 2009)
  • An Audience With ... The Chuckle Brothers (2010)
  • The Twelve Days of Christmas (Christmas pantomime, 2010)
  • Barry Potty And His Full Blood Brother Paul in The Ghostly Shadows (2011)
  • Cinderella (Christmas pantomime, Hull, 2011)
  • Phantom At The Theatre (2013) (The Phantom of the Opera)
  • Aladdin (Christmas pantomime, Darlington, 2013)
  • In A 2014 Space Oddity (2014)
  • The Chuckles Of Oz (Christmas Pantomime, Darlington, 2014)

The 2005 tour, Pirates of The River Rother, the 2007 tour, Spooky Goings On 2 and the 2008 tour, Indiana Chuckles and the Kingdom of the Mythical Sulk, have all been released on DVD. An edited version of the 1996 tour was also released as The Chuckle Brothers In Trouble; the DVD features a rehearsal performance of the show. Pirates of River Rother was revived in 2012 as Pirates of River Rother 2: In Stranger Tights. The 2010 tour, "An Audience With ... The Chuckle Brothers", adopted the format of a variety show with classic sketches, audience questions, musical performances, puppetry, film clips, magic and an audience participation version of To Me... To You..., in commemoration of 21 years of the ChuckleVision TV series.

Other appearances[edit]

More recently, the Brothers have been making appearances at various nightclubs and student events, signing autographs and posing for photographs. On 3 October they attended a freshers event at the University of Leeds students' union.[19] On 5 October, they attended the Halo Nightclub in Bournemouth[20] and on 9 October, they attended the Kasbah Nightclub in Coventry.[21]


In October 1995, the Chuckle Brothers released an album entitled To You to Me featuring eleven tracks.[22] Many of the tracks were based on their catchphrases, such as 'To me, to you' and 'Silly You, Silly Me'. The album was originally released onto CD and cassette, before being sold digitally on the Chuckle Brothers' website prior to its demise.

In October 2014, the Chuckle Brothers collaborated with Tinchy Stryder to release a charity single "To Me, To You (Bruv)" to raise funds for the African-Caribbean Leukaemia Trust.[23]

In September 2015, the Brothers performed for twenty minutes at the music festival Bestival, citing it as the biggest crowd they had ever performed in front of.[24]

Critical reception[edit]

In November 2005 Jacques Peretti, an investigative reporter for The Guardian, remarked on how 'the appeal of the Chuckle Brothers remains a mystery to anyone over eight, but to anyone under eight, they're the ultimate entertainment experience'. 'The little people think they're hilarious, and if you add up all the little people across the country who think they're hilarious, you'd think it's ChuckleVision that should have the 28 comedy gongs, not Little Britain or The Office'. [25]

On 31 January 2007, Rotherham United chairman Denis Coleman announced that the brothers had both been made honorary presidents of the football club.[26] In November 2007, Loaded magazine launched a campaign for the brothers to be knighted, calling for its readers to write to the Queen. This was picked up by a group on the social networking website Facebook. In 2008, they were honoured with the Special Award at the Children's BAFTA Awards.[27]

In Series 5, Episode 5 of Charlie Brooker's Screenwipe broadcast 16 December 2008, Kirsten O'Brien dedicated a segment of the programme to the Brothers' most well-known series ChuckleVision. In this, she professed to liking the Chuckle Brothers as there 'aren't that many people doing what they do anymore. It's real end of the pier, completely innocuous, fun, innocent stuff. The way they look is not your standard kids telly fodder, these two people look like they've been on remand in 1989'.[28]

Personal life[edit]

The brothers regularly appear at events and openings, a recent example of which was the unveiling of the Tropical Butterfly House, Wildlife and Falconry Centre in North Anston in July 2013.[29] They are supporters of Rotherham United Football Club.[30]

Both brothers are married – Barry’s wife is called Ann and Paul is married to Sue.[31] At one time both Brothers seem to have been smokers, although Paul had stopped the habit by 2000.[32]

In April 2007, while on holiday on the Greek island of Cephalonia, Paul broke his nose and suffered cuts and bruises when he lost control of his motorcycle after suddenly braking to avoid a goat herder and his flock. Instead of helping him, tourists who stopped at the accident shouted the Chuckle Brothers' catchphrase, "To me, to you."[33]

An urban legend surrounding Barry Chuckle's supposed death from a heart attack has circulated since at least 2008. In 2010, the brothers issued a statement on their website stating that the story was "complete and utter rubbish".[34] The BBC reported that the death hoaxes had upset young viewers, and had shocked Barry when they re-surfaced.[35] The hoax was said to have initially spread via Facebook in 2008, but re-surfaced in 2010 via Twitter.[35]

In December 2010, Barry announced his support for a proposal that one of the Conservative–Liberal Democrat coalition government's planned free schools, a taxpayer-funded school independent of the local authority, should be established in Rotherham.[36] In January 2011, it was announced that Barry had planned to incorporate a 100-pupil free school named Rotherham Central Free School in his hometown of Rotherham. His son's partner was to serve as the head teacher of the school.[37] By February 2012, no premises, staff or pupils for the school had been confirmed, despite announcing an intention on opening in September of that year.[38] In March 2012, plans on opening the school were halted by educational ministers, citing that it was not 'progressing sufficiently'. After the decision was announced, Stephen Twigg MP jokingly stated 'Michael Gove should have thought twice about approving plans being fronted by one of the Chuckle Brothers'.[39]

In January 2011, it was reported that Paul possessed four properties outside of the UK and stated that he would gladly part with any of them to permanently live on the Greek island of Cephalonia. It was revealed that he owned a flat in Calabria, southern Italy, a three-bedroom cottage in the village of Boderel, near Pontivy in Brittany and two holiday homes in Cephalonia itself. He also possessed a five-bedroom property in Hatfield near Doncaster. Paul had expressed apparent difficulty in selling his French property, which at that time had been on the market since 2009.[40] In December 2013, he began marketing his five-bedroom home in Hatfield, South Yorkshire as for sale. He had purchased the property 'Half Acres' in 2002 for £300,000, spending £50,000 on various refurbishments since that time. He had similarly received difficulty in selling the property, and had to reduce the asking price of it by at least £150,000 before doing so.[4]

In February 2014, the Chuckle Brothers attended the trial of Dave Lee Travis, who had been accused of molesting a stage hand whilst performing at a theatre in Crawley during the early 1990s. The trial had been part of Operation Yewtree. Travis had been performing with the duo when it was said the incident had occurred; however, the brothers could not recall such an attack taking place.[41] Paul stated that it was a "complete shock" that such an attack had occurred in their presence.[42] In September 2014, it was reported that the attack had been 'interrupted' by the Brothers as they walked by a dressing room, containing Travis and the victim.[43] After giving evidence, the Brothers posed for a selfie outside of Southwark Crown Court with Paul tweeting it[44] to thousands of followers on his Twitter account.[45] The Brothers had smiled whilst taking the photograph, and later some deemed their actions as inappropriate.[46]

In a February 2015 meeting of Prime Minister's Questions, Prime Minister David Cameron referred to the leader of the opposition, Ed Miliband and Ed Balls as The Chuckle Brothers.[47]

Paul is understood to have had his moustache since the age of 23.[48]


  1. ^ "MR BARRY DAVID ELLIOTT director information. Free director information". Company Check. Retrieved 16 October 2015. 
  2. ^ "MR PAUL HARMAN ELLIOTT director information. Free director information". Company Check. Retrieved 16 October 2015. 
  3. ^ Harman, Len (7 December 1981). "A Showbiz Dynasty". The Stage. Retrieved 12 February 2009. 
  4. ^ a b "Welcome to Chuckle Towers: Paul Elliott's five-bedroom mansion". Mail Online. Retrieved 9 October 2015. 
  5. ^ "Preview: The Chuckle Brothers at the Apollo, Oxford – April 19". The Oxford Times. 18 April 2001. Retrieved 18 April 2011. 
  6. ^ "Chuckle Brothers". World Public Library. Retrieved 5 November 2015. 
  7. ^ "/cv/ Chucklevision General #1: Oh dear, oh dear". 4plebs. Retrieved 5 November 2015. 
  8. ^ Alex Fletcher (16 September 2010). "Celebrity 'Coach Trip' lineup revealed". Digital Spy. 
  9. ^ "Chuckle Brothers Help Make Cheap Van Insurance a Wheeze!". Van Compare. Retrieved 7 November 2011. 
  10. ^ Nye, James. "Why does the devil in 'The Bible' look exactly like President Obama?". Mail Online. Daily Mail. Retrieved 5 November 2015. 
  11. ^ Martin, Simon. "Customer Review". Amazon. Retrieved 5 November 2015. 
  12. ^ "The Chuck Brothers: Spooky Goings On Live!" (Press release). Liberation Entertainment. Retrieved 28 October 2007. 
  13. ^ Debonair Dance Academy official website
  14. ^ "HSGA- Hawaiian Steel Guitar Association". Facebook. Retrieved 5 November 2015. 
  15. ^ "Spring Tour". Official website. The Chuckle Brothers. Archived from the original on 12 November 2007. Retrieved 26 October 2007. 
  16. ^ "The Chuckle Brothers". World Public Library. Retrieved 5 November 2015. 
  17. ^ Doolan, Lita (16 April 2009). "Chuckle Trek". Daily Information, Ltd. Retrieved 14 December 2011. 
  18. ^ "Chuckle Brothers". Spokeo. Retrieved 5 November 2015. 
  19. ^ "It's Freshers' Finale this Saturday... - Leeds University Union | Facebook". Retrieved 9 October 2015. 
  20. ^ "Halo Bournemouth on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 9 October 2015. 
  21. ^ "CHUCKLE BROTHERS (Kinky) - Kasbah Nightclub, Coventry". Kasbah Nightclub, Coventry. Retrieved 9 October 2015. 
  22. ^ "The Chuckle Brothers - To You To Me". Discogs. Retrieved 9 October 2015. 
  23. ^
  24. ^ "Chuckle Brothers had a 'brilliant' time at Bestival and can't wait to do it again!". Retrieved 9 October 2015. 
  25. ^ "Jacques Peretti: Down with the Kids". the Guardian. Retrieved 10 October 2015. 
  26. ^ "Millers Make Two Big Signings". The Chuckle Brothers Official UK Website. 7 February 2007. Archived from the original on 23 August 2007. Retrieved 4 September 2007. 
  27. ^ "Bafta honour for Chuckle Brothers". BBC News. 1 December 2008. Retrieved 26 January 2010. 
  28. ^ "Charlie Brooker's Screenwipe S05E05". YouTube. BBC. 16 August 2011. Retrieved 17 October 2015. 
  29. ^ "Chuckles at new Zoo Exhibit". Family Days UK. 10 July 2013. Retrieved 7 August 2013. 
  30. ^ "Famous Fans: The Chuckle Brothers". The Football League. 27 November 2008. Retrieved 18 April 2011. 
  31. ^ "Whatever Happened To... The Chuckle Brothers?". Now Magazine. Retrieved 25 October 2015. 
  32. ^ "Paul Chuckle on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 28 October 2015. 
  33. ^ "Chuckle brother hurt in crash". CBBC Newsround (BBC). 27 April 2007. Retrieved 31 March 2010. 
  34. ^ "News On Barry". The Chuckle Brothers. 2010. Retrieved 14 April 2010. [dead link]
  35. ^ a b "Barry Chuckle's shock over death rumours". BBC News. 8 June 2010. Retrieved 8 June 2010. 
  36. ^ "Free school "a brilliant idea" says Barry Chuckle". The Rotherham Advertiser. 7 December 2010. Retrieved 19 February 2012. 
  37. ^ "Barry Chuckle to set up Rotherham school". Digital Spy. Retrieved 9 October 2015. 
  38. ^ "Exclusive: Mystery of a Chuckle Brother’s ‘ghost’ school with no staff or pupils". Yorkshire Post. Retrieved 9 October 2015. 
  39. ^ "You're having a laugh: Chuckle Brother’s bid to open school collapses after Government U-turn". Mirror. Retrieved 9 October 2015. 
  40. ^ "This Chuckle Brother would be laughing... if he sold up and built in Kefalonia". Mail Online. Retrieved 9 October 2015. 
  41. ^ "Chuckle Brothers arrive to give evidence in trial of Dave Lee Travis". Mail Online. Retrieved 9 October 2015. 
  42. ^ Association, Press. "Chuckle Brothers' 'shock' at Dave Lee Travis sex assault claims". the Guardian. Retrieved 9 October 2015. 
  43. ^ "Dave Lee Travis 'interrupted by Chuckle Brothers as he sexually assaulted panto stage-hand'". mirror. Retrieved 9 October 2015. 
  44. ^ "ITV News on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 31 October 2015. 
  45. ^ "Chuckle Brothers take selfie outside DLT court". ITV News. Retrieved 31 October 2015. 
  46. ^ "Is this the most inappropriate selfie of all time?". i100. Retrieved 31 October 2015. 
  47. ^ "David Cameron mocks Ed Balls over failure to name a single business leader who backs Labour". Telegraph. Retrieved 9 October 2015. 
  48. ^ "@paulchuckle2". Twitter. 25 July 2014. Retrieved 25 July 2014. 

External links[edit]