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Griff Rhys Jones, Dara O'Briain and Rory McGrath
Griff, Dara and Rory

Three Men in a Boat

Griff Rhys Jones, Dara O'Briain and Rory McGrath have been retracing the comic journey in Jerome K. Jerome's novel 'Three Men in a Boat'. They rowed from Kingston to Oxford, passing through Berkshire, and we spoke to Rory McGrath about the trip.


Did you have fun?

"Immense fun...it was very hard work, rowing 97 miles upstream is very, very hard work!"

People are fooled by rowing because most of us just see it on television when it's young able-bodied men who know how to do it!

"...the thought of rowing back to Griff's coq au vin, with no coq or vin, boiled away on a camp fire, didn't really appeal."
Rory McGrath

"Are you suggesting this is something different!"

Tell us more about 'incident at Sonning'...

"Yeah...Griff Rhys Jones is a very able camper, he loves the challenge, he's a bit of a boy scout, and he loves the idea of being on an island, cooking, rubbing sticks together etc.

"...he decided, having stopped off at Anthony Worral Thompson's house and stolen loads of vegetables, to prepare a meal and having taken a long time preparing it.

"We were in rowing distance of all the lovely pubs in Sonning and Dara and I suggested that we row to a nice pub in Sonning, have a few drinks and we'd row back in a couple of hours.

"...the thought of rowing back to Griff's coq au vin with no coq or vin, boiled away on a camp fire didn't really appeal.

"And we thought as it was getting darker and the beers were going down, we should stay there."

The test will be how many people will actually get up after watching this and go and buy the original book of 'Three Men in a Boat'...

"Well that would be a great thing if they did. It was considered a bit rude at the time and we've shown it scant respect and fans of the book might think who are these uncouth reprobates, but actually at the time the book was published, that's exactly what people thought about it - who was this uncouth, reprobate writing about the beautiful Thames."

Three Men in a Boat, 3rd and 5th January 2006, BBC Two, 9pm.

last updated: 03/01/06
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