Explore Holmfirth - Home to The Last of the Summer Wine.

posted by cw on Friday, August 27, 2010

As the world's longest-running sitcom, The Last of the Summer Wine, comes to an end on BBC television this weekend, why not download one of ViewRanger's GPS guided walking routes around Holmfirth - home to the show.

Routes include "A Taste of the Summer Wine" from AA Publishing, and "Holmfirth - Last of the Summer Wine Country" from Walkingworld.

Walkingworld's "Holmfirth - Last of the Summer Wine Country" is a fantastic short circular walk focused on the Last of the Summer Wine village of Holmfirth. It allows you to see some of the landmarks made famous by the long-running programme and also takes you through the varied, deeply valleyed countryside for which the area is famous.

The AA's "A Taste of the Summer Wine" tells us that Holmfirth and the Holme Valley have been popularised as "Summer Wine Country". The whimsical TV series, starring the trio of incorrigible old buffers Compo, Foggy and Clegg, has now been running for a quarter of a century. These larger-than-life characters, going back to their second childhoods, have proved to be an irresistible formula in the hands of writer Roy Clarke. Last of the Summer Wine was first seen in January 1973, as a one-off Comedy Playhouse episode. The response was so good that a six-part series was commissioned. The rest is history, with Summer Wine becoming the UK's longest running comedy programme. The cast have become familiar faces around Holmfirth. So much so that when Londoner Bill Owen (lovable rogue 'Compo') died in 1999 at the age of 85, he was laid to rest overlooking the little town he had grown to call home. Bill Owen's real-life son Tom joined the cast to play Compo's long lost son, and together with plenty of newcomers, the series seems to have plenty of life in it yet. Visitors come to Holmfirth in their droves, in search of film locations such as Sid's Cafe and Nora Batty's house. But Holmfirth takes its TV fame in its stride, for this isn't the first time that the town has starred in front of the cameras. In fact, Holmfirth very nearly became another Hollywood. Bamforths - better known for its naughty seaside postcards - began to make short films here in the early years of the last century. They were exported around the world to popular demand. Local people were drafted in as extras in Bamforths' overwrought dramas. Film production came to an end at the outbreak of the First World War and, sadly, was never resumed.

To discover these routes in ViewRanger, search for "Holmforth" under Routes > Search by Text.


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