Ground Zero

Popped to Brum on Wednesday night for Miriam’s leaving drinks. Miriam has been on Doctors a lot longer than I had been and being frustrated with the lack of opportunities to move up she’s taken the decision cut loose and have a well deserved break. The evening was partly about remembering the good times and making it clear that everyone would miss her but also about celebrating the next phase of her career, and indeed life, now that the world of Letherbridge (the fictional Midlands town that the GP’s inhabit – it’s all on the website) is behind her. It was a bit like a New Orleans street funeral where people are sad and sombre and then explode into wild and euphoric dancing. There was drinking, and then there was more drinking. And then there was karaoke. I had actually got the courage up to sing but the song I had chosen wouldn’t play. Which at the time, seemed a shame but the next morning had a been a cause for rejoicing.

On the way to Selly Park from the city centre I was awestruck as we drove past Pebble Mill…

Or at least, where Pebble Mill had been. This mammoth (albeit profoundly ugly) building had stood for about 33 years and now it was reduced to a few modest banks of rubble, waiting the developers who are soon to move in and begin work on the science park that will eventually appear in its place. I can remember that anyone new to Pebble Mill always got an overwhelming sense of the history of the place. The BBC in Birmingham had facilitated a vast host of great programmes of every genre that helped to reflect the midlands and give programme makers a way of showing viewers that not everyone in BBC in England was London-centric and that people in the regions could have there own voice and, to some extent, identity in the same way that people in Cardiff, Glasgow and Belfast had enjoyed. I had only worked there for a few years before it was closed but I still remember being impressed by the many pictures that adorned the walls including Warren Clarke in Dalziel and Pascoe, Richard E. Grant in The Scarlet Pimpernell, Pete Postlethwaite in Martin Chuzzlewitt and of course the assembled casts of Doctors and The Archers, and that was just the drama. I’ve yet to visit the guys in the new Drama Village in Selly Oak and it really does sound comfortable and well designed but won’t ever be as remarkable in the way that Pebble Mill was. And it probably struggles to double for an ancient and neglected hospital exterior. But anyway, enough of all this moping – best of luck Miriam! Enjoy Palm Springs and enjoy the future!

4 thoughts on “Ground Zero”

  1. It’s possible Richard wheeled her in there while she was sleeping and then stood back as the jcb’s pulled rubble on top of her. Unless of course you subscribe to my theory that they’re both just slightly more sophisticated glove puppets.

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