Sixpenny Corner

1955 | United Kingdom

This was the first ever serial shown on Independent Television in the UK, and Britain's first daily TV Soap. 

Sixpenny Corner started on ITV's second day of broadcast. It was about the lives of two ordinary young newlyweds, Bill and Sally Norton (Howard Pays and Patricia Dainton) - he trying to make a success of a small garage business while she ran the home. All this took place at Sixpenny Corner in the rural town on Springwood. Their friends and relations helped-and hindered-them from time to time. Notable characters in the series included Sally's parents, Mr & Mrs Sharpe (played by Walter Horsbrugh and Betty Bowden), her sister, Yvonne (Shirley Mitchell), and Bill's brothers, Stan and Tom (Robert Desmond and Bernard Fox). Each episode ran for 15 minutes. The series ran until 1956. 

The series creators were Jonquil Antony and Hazel Adair - Adair went on to co-create (with Peter Ling) both Compact for the BBC and Crossroads for ITV. Howard Pays gave up acting in 1968 to become a talent agent, a career that proved to be hugely successful for him. Patricia Dainton, who was born in Hamilton, Scotland, gave up acting in 1963. 

Two of the actors in the series found television fame waiting for them in the USA. Shirley Mitchell (who was born in Toledo, Ohio) starred as Kitty Deveraux in Bachelor Father (1958-59) before playing running roles in The Beverly Hillbillies and Petticoat Junction. In 2006 she was heard in a video game of Desperate Housewives! Bernard Fox portrayed the warlock physician Dr. Bombay on Bewitched and the inept British Colonel Crittenden on Hogan's Heroes. He also appeared in The Man from U.N.C.L.E., Columbo and Murder, She Wrote.

Published on January 31st, 2019. Written by Laurence Marcus for Television Heaven.

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