Auf Wiedersehen, Pet stars to reunite at convention
Stars of the ‘80s classic Auf Wiedersehen, Pet are to appear at a fan convention in Newcastle.
Several events are planned across a weekend in September to mark the 30th anniversary of the broadcast of the first series of the TV show.
Fans will be able to buy tickets to a dinner attended by writers and stars at the Hilton Hotel, next to the Tyne Bridge, in September.
Series creator Franc Roddam and writers Dick Clement and Ian Le Frenais, also known for classic sitcoms The Likely Lads and Porridge, will take part in a Q&A session at the Tyneside Cinema following a screening of an episode selected by fans. Executive producer Allan McKeown will also be on the panel.
The weekend also includes a treasure hunt around local pubs in Newcastle and Gateshead, and also a bus tour of filming locations from Auf Wiedersehen, Pet, Spender, The Likely Lads, and Our Friends in the North.
Proceeds from the dinner and the auction will be donated to the Sunday for Sammy Trust, established to support emerging talent in the region.
The charity was set up in the memory of actor Sammy Johnson, a personal friend of many of the show’s stars, who appeared in a second series episode of Auf Wiedersehen, Pet.
The series, which was first screened on ITV in November 1983, followed unemployed Geordies Dennis, Oz and Neville (played by Tim Healy, Jimmy Nail, and Kevin Whately) as they found work on a German building site.
Tim Healy, who played Dennis Patterson, said the show “was such a good statement of Thatcher’s Britain. There were 30,000 Brits working over there that time because the [British] construction industry had collapsed.”
The series also starred Gary Holton as Wayne, Christopher Fairbank as Moxey, Timothy Spall as Barry, and Pat Roach as Bomber.
A second series followed in 1986. Holton died during filming, leading to the series being completed using stand-ins, rewriting, and clever camerawork.
The remaining six members of the group, known as the ‘Magnificent Seven’, decided to reunite following a sketch performed for a benefit concert in aid of Sunday for Sammy.
Two further series, in 2002 and 2004, were broadcast on BBC One, with a final two-part special broadcast at Christmas 2004.
All of the surviving members of the cast have performed Auf Wiedersehen, Pet sketches especially written by Clement and Le Frenais at the biannual Sunday for Sammy concerts, mostly held at Newcastle City Hall.
Precise details of the stars expected to attend have yet to be announced.
The Auf Wiedersehen, Pet convention takes place from 20-22 September 2013. Tickets for the events can be bought from Tyne Idols. The next Sunday for Sammy concerts will be held at Newcastle City Hall on 9 February.