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Clarence (British TV series)

  (Redirected from Clarence (1988 TV series))

Clarence is a 1988 BBC situation comedy starring Ronnie Barker and Josephine Tewson, written by Ronnie Barker under the pseudonym "Bob Ferris" as an acknowledgement to Dick Clement and Ian La Frenais, creators of Porridge. It was Barker's final sitcom appearance before his retirement.

Clarence title card.jpg
Created byRonnie Barker
Written byBob Ferris
StarringRonnie Barker
Josephine Tewson
Country of originUnited Kingdom
No. of episodes6
Running time30 minutes per episode
DistributorBBC Studios
ABC (Australia, home video)
Original networkBBC2
Original release4 January (1988-01-04) –
8 February 1988 (1988-02-08)

Barker had previously faced some criticism over his employment of a stammer for comedic effect in Open All Hours. However, the slapstick potential of a short-sighted furniture shifter must have seemed irresistible. The series was inspired by "The Removals Person" by Hugh Leonard,[1] an episode in the 1971 LWT comedy anthology series, Six Dates With Barker. The pilot episode has the same plot and a very similar script, even to the extent of Tewson reprising her earlier role. The only significant difference is that in "The Removals Person" Barker's character is named Fred.

Only one series of Clarence was made, which is now available on DVD. The series is also available in Region 4 Australia with the same cover art. The house of Jane Travers, which inspired the opening titles, is located on Malvern Road in Cheltenham [2]



In 1937, on the day of King George VI's coronation, Clarence Sale, a myopic removal man is clearing the house of a snooty upper-class lady who is moving abroad. There, he meets Jane Travers, her maid. The pair are mutually attracted and soon Clarence proposes to her. Jane decides that they should have a trial period of living together in a small cottage she has been given in an inheritance to see if they are compatible, with a bolster in the bed to preserve her chastity. The series followed this unconventional relationship, as well as Clarence's attempts at his furniture-moving profession.


Clarence region 2 DVD cover.


This list is ordered by the original air dates on BBC2 in the United Kingdom.

No.TitleOriginal air date
1Episode 14 January 1988 (1988-01-04)
Coronation Day 12 May 1937 While the rest of the nation celebrates, Clarence Sale continues his removals business. He enlists the help of ladies' maid, Jane Travers, a move which changes his life.
2Episode 211 January 1988 (1988-01-11)
After a marriage proposal from Clarence, Travers decides it may be advisable to have a trial period living together first. They leave London for the Oxfordshire countryside.
3Episode 318 January 1988 (1988-01-18)
Clarence and Travers continue their trial period living together in the Oxfordshire countryside. A chance meeting with the vicar's wife opens up new opportunities for Clarence to test his removal skills.
4Episode 425 January 1988 (1988-01-25)
Travers is determined not to rush into marriage with Clarence. As they settle into their cottage in the Oxfordshire countryside she decides that keeping chickens might be a good idea. Clarence sets about rebuilding the run.
5Episode 51 February 1988 (1988-02-01)
Clarence and Travers continue their trial period living together before deciding on marriage. Money is getting short and Clarence is forced to the labour exchange to find work.
6Episode 68 February 1988 (1988-02-08)
Clarence is beginning to get frustrated, not only by the bolster which separates him and Travers in bed, but by her lack of decision about marriage. They both find work at a big house in the village and Clarence decides on a walk in the country.


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