We wish you a merry Christmas and a happy New Year! Sorry posts are slow at The Bugle at the moment. There are important things to attend to behind the scenes which mean that posting will remain sluggish throughout January and possibly into February. But rest assured our 1989 retrospective will continue!
At the top of this post are a couple of piccies of the glorious Alan Turner (Richard Thorp), who made his Emmerdale Farm debut in episode 0723, broadcast in March 1982. On the right, he can be seen with his wonderful secretary Mrs Bates (Diana Davies) - teaching her the gentle art of bowls. Of course, she was much better at the game than he was!
Alan was a truly groundbreaking Emmerdale character. All the permanent characters before 1982 were nice - some even lovable - and, although none of them were saints, they all had the best interests of the community at heart.
Alan Turner, quite frankly, couldn't give a damn, as long as his own nest was feathered. He blustered, bullied, and drank his way into Beckindale's bad books.
Of course, Alan was never a straightforward JR Ewing type baddie - although the popular press of the 1980s liked to label him as such. The character had a deeply lonely and unhappy side to his nature, along with a strong desire to be liked. As time went on, Alan's occasional thoughtful acts, and Richard Thorp's twinkling benevolence, helped to mould Beckindale's first full-time Mr Nasty into a fascinating and multi-faceted character - certainly not all bad, but no fully paid up Mr Nice Guy either!
Below is a doodle drawn by Richard Thorp for charity a few years ago - "A Happy Alan Turner at Christmas".
I wonder if he ate the whole Christmas pudding?!