When Mrs Caroline Bates turned up as Alan's "temp" secretary in 1984, nobody suspected that this was the beginning of one of the show's best-loved comic partnerships. But with Mrs Bates ever-ready to see through Alan's bluster to the wally underneath, great fun was had by we lucky viewers.
And many of us actually began to like Alan as a result - which was a tremendous change as, since his arrival in 1982, he'd aroused feelings of irritation and even, sometimes, vehement dislike amongst viewers.
"You've taken a bit of stick in real life as the 'JR' figure, haven't you?" said Richard Whiteley to Richard Thorp on the 1,000th episode celebration programme.
"Yes, I have - and particularly at home," replied Richard Thorp. "My wife always insists Alan Turner leaves the room before she has a chance to chat to Richard Thorp!"
Richard Whiteley: "But I hear that when you go into restaurants, people have left the restaurants and taxi drivers wouldn't give you lifts?"
Richard Thorp: "Oh, yes, yes - 'Not you, you walk!' they say!"
Richard Whiteley: "What we all want to know, really, are you two going to get it together ever do you think?"
Richard Thorp (suddenly becoming Alan Turner): "That's down to you, Mrs Bates. I think you can answer that one."
Diana Davies: "Well, we don't know, we just think it's probably not a very good idea because it's good fun the way it is now."
Richard Whiteley: "What about just something for now on this special occasion?"
Diana Davies: "All right."
Richard Thorp, after the kiss, becoming Alan Turner again: "That's in lieu of a rise - you don't get everything for nothing!"