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David Troughton is the new Tony Archer

Thursday 2 January 2014, 10:46

Keri Davies Keri Davies Web Producer, The Archers

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David Troughton is the new Tony Archer
There’s a big change afoot at Bridge Farm. Having played the part of Tony for more than four decades, Colin Skipp has decided to retire on health grounds. David Troughton (pictured above) will take on the role from 7 January.
David is an enormously experienced actor. As well as numerous television appearances, his illustrious stage career includes leading roles in the Royal National Theatre and Royal Shakespeare Company.
Archers editor Sean O’Connor paid tribute to David’s predecessor: “We’re so sorry to say goodbye to Colin Skipp, who has been at the core of The Archers family for so many years. He has created a vibrant, warm and iconic character. He’ll be hugely missed by everybody working on the programme and, I’m sure, by listeners too. However, we’re thrilled to welcome David Troughton to fill Colin’s wellies and very excited to see where he and the writers will take Tony and the Bridge Farm Archers in the future.”
Colin said: “I’m sorry to be leaving The Archers after more than 40 happy years in the programme. But sadly ill health has made it extremely difficult for me to continue playing Tony. While at 60 years of age, Tony quickly recovered from his heart attack, I had more problems at 74 coping with several real-life heart attacks, resulting in major heart surgery. 
“I shall miss my trips to Ambridge, working with a superb cast, directors, everyone in the office and studio – and my lovely radio family, Pat, Louiza and Tom. However, I’m looking forward to spending time with my own wife, daughter, son-in-law and granddaughter. I send best wishes to David Troughton, the new Tony, and hope the part will give him as much pleasure as it gave me.”
David has been thrown in at the deep end but took a moment during a busy recording schedule. He said: “This came totally out of the blue but I was extremely pleased and privileged to be asked to take over such an important part in the longest running series in the world. I wish Colin all the best in his retirement and I’ll do my very best to fill his muddy wellington boots.”
In a strange coincidence, David is a cousin of Judy Bennett, who plays Shula Hebden Lloyd. And in the programme Tony and Shula are also cousins!
Keri Davies is an Archers scriptwriter and web producer.
Learn more about Tony – and David Troughton – in our Who’s Who
Clips
Tony discovers John after the accident (Feb 1998) p019py6q
Tony can't be happy that Helen is pregnant (May 2010) p018qfxt
Tony meets his new grandson Henry (Jan 2011) p018qg0g
February 2012: Tom and Tony disagree about produce p016qzkg
Patricia Gallimore (Pat Archer) and Colin Skipp (Tony Archer) p00dcbxx
How the big scenes are the easiest to play. Meeting the business ends of real cows.
David Troughton (Tony Archer) David Troughton (Tony Archer)
David Troughton (Tony Archer) David Troughton (Tony Archer)

There’s a big change afoot at Bridge Farm. Having played the part of Tony for more than four decades, Colin Skipp has decided to retire on health grounds. David Troughton (pictured above) will take on the role from 7 January.

David is an enormously experienced actor. As well as numerous television appearances, his illustrious stage career includes leading roles in the Royal National Theatre and Royal Shakespeare Company.

Archers editor Sean O’Connor paid tribute to David’s predecessor: “We’re so sorry to say goodbye to Colin Skipp, who has been at the core of The Archers family for so many years. He has created a vibrant, warm and iconic character. He’ll be hugely missed by everybody working on the programme and, I’m sure, by listeners too. However, we’re thrilled to welcome David Troughton to fill Colin’s wellies and very excited to see where he and the writers will take Tony and the Bridge Farm Archers in the future.”

Colin said: “I’m sorry to be leaving The Archers after more than 40 happy years in the programme. But sadly ill health has made it extremely difficult for me to continue playing Tony. While at 60 years of age, Tony quickly recovered from his heart attack, I had more problems at 74 coping with several real-life heart attacks, resulting in major heart surgery.

“I shall miss my trips to Ambridge, working with a superb cast, directors, everyone in the office and studio – and my lovely radio family, Pat, Louiza and Tom. However, I’m looking forward to spending time with my own wife, daughter, son-in-law and granddaughter. I send best wishes to David Troughton, the new Tony, and hope the part will give him as much pleasure as it gave me.”

David has been thrown in at the deep end but took a moment during a busy recording schedule. He said: “This came totally out of the blue but I was extremely pleased and privileged to be asked to take over such an important part in the longest running series in the world. I wish Colin all the best in his retirement and I’ll do my very best to fill his muddy wellington boots.

Tony - storylines

As Tony, Colin Skpp has starred in numerous memorable storylines. He was something of a lad-about-Ambridge in his younger days. But he found stability with Pat, until she became more politically aware in the 1980s - famously cancelling his Daily Express for The Guardian and becoming involved in the women's movement and CND. Tony's suggestion that they convert Bridge Farm to organic production gave them the common purpose that salvaged the marriage.

Tony's most dramatic moment was when he discovered the body of this son John after a tractor accident in 1998 (audio clip below). More recently, he has fought hard not to be sidelined by younger son Tom over the future direction of the farm.

Some memorable performances from Colin Skipp as Tony Archer:

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Tony discovers John after the accident (Feb 1998)


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Tony can't be happy that Helen is pregnant (May 2010)


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Tony meets his new grandson Henry (Jan 2011)

 

Colin and Pat discuss being in The Archers. Includes how the big scenes are the easiest to play, and meeting the business end of a dairy cow.

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Patricia Gallimore and Colin Skipp discuss who wears the trousers in the relationship between Pat and Tony Archer and how they bring to life ordinary events in the drama.


David Troughton - credits


David's television appearances include Outnumbered, New Tricks, Holby City, Casualty 1909, Doctor Who, Jericho, All the King’s Men, Madame Bovary, The Last Detective, Midsomer Murders, Sharpe’s Rifles, Sharpe’s Eagle, Trevor’s World of Sport, Drop the Dead Donkey,Bob Buzzard in  A Very Peculiar Practice, The Winslow Boy, Cider With Rosie, and Stan in The Cafe.

David is an Associate Artist of the Royal Shakespeare Company, for whom his credits include Bottom in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Kent in King Lear, Ross, the Porter and Duncan in Macbeth (not in the same production), Caliban in The Tempest, Bolingbroke in Richard II and the title roles in Henry IV Parts One and Two and Richard III, for which he received the Globe Theatre Best Actor Award.

For the National Theatre his stints have included Don Juan, Sergeant Musgrave’s Dance, Martin in Fool for Love, Captain Hook in Peter Pan, George in Playing With Fire, the Duke in Measure for Measure and Uncle Harvey in Season’s Greetings. 

The son of Patrick Troughton, David has played his father's role in Doctor Who audio adventures.
David is a cousin of Judy Bennett, who plays Shula Hebden Lloyd. And In a strange coincidence, in The Archers Tony and Shula are also cousins!

Keri Davies is an Archers scriptwriter and web producer.


Learn more about Tony – and David Troughton – in our Who’s Who

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Comments

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  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 1.

    Best wishes to Colin Skipp who has played the part so well for many years. An alternative might have been to kill off Tony when he had his heart attack and see how the family managed without him.

  • rate this
    +5

    Comment number 2.

    Best wishes Colin. Will miss you

  • rate this
    +8

    Comment number 3.

    I will really miss you Colin, and The Archers won't sound the same without you being there. All the best and good luck. A very warm welcome to David Troughton to be the new Tony Archers.

  • rate this
    +7

    Comment number 4.

    Colin, so sorry to lose you and I hope your health will improve with retirement. I shall miss your very human voice in the series. Best wishes. Welcome David to your new role.

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 5.

    I've been listening to Colin as Tony for almost as long as he has been playing the part! Enjoy your retirement Colin. I'm glad the character is not going to be killed off - it's a tribute to Colin, and David is also rather gorgeous!

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 6.

    All the very best Colin and David, welcome to the family !

  • rate this
    +6

    Comment number 7.

    Wishing Colin years of better health and life, and looking forward to the 'new' Tony getting to grips with the role. Thanks for all your years at it, Colin.

  • rate this
    +4

    Comment number 8.

    Colin, you showed me round the old Archers studio at Pebble Mill many years ago when I was a young reporter from your home town. You were kindness itself, and I'm still a fan 25 years later. Thanks for being Tony for 40 years, you deserve to enjoy a happy retirement. And welcome to David - here's hoping for some great storylines for you!

  • rate this
    +6

    Comment number 9.

    Thank you Colin for all your years as Tony. As 'LilianFred' said above, yours was a very human voice in the series - very real and very believable - like a friend known over many years. Best wishes for health and happiness in your retirement.

  • rate this
    +3

    Comment number 10.

    I have always adored Tony Archer, and will miss Mr Skipp's voice very much. Thank you for all the pleasure your performances have given (though I wish you had married Mary... I bet she would have stayed true to her principles!). And for the gracious remarks you have made about my favourite programme.

    You will be missed.

    But welcome to Mr. Troughton.

  • rate this
    +3

    Comment number 11.

    It's such a shame to be saying goodbye to Colin Skipp - I hope he enjoys a long and happy retirement. OTOH, welcome to David Troughton. May he enjoy being part of TA as much as Colin has.

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 12.

    THank you Colin for making Tony such a memorable character. I remember the days when you were a bit of a "Jack the Lad" - didn't you drive a sports car? Enjoy your retirement and I hope it brings you better health.

    Welcome to David Troughton and I hope you get some good story lines. I at least want you to stand up to that son of yours. Pretty please Scripties?
    JPBS

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 13.

    Thank you Colin for making Tony so believable, its great to listen to old tapes and here how much like tony Tom became! We hope you enjoy your retirement.
    Welcome to David Troughton, you are joining a wonderful group.

  • rate this
    +4

    Comment number 14.

    I'm very sorry to hear Colin Skipp has been unwell and hope very much he enjoys better health and a long and happy retirement. Tony has always been one of my favourite characters (since he saw the light about organic farming) thanks to Colin's interpretation of the character and so while I'll miss his voice I'm very glad the character is being recast rather than being retired together with Jack Woolley (rip).

    I'm very excited about David Troughton taking on the role as he oughtn't to need any scripts to take up his role as an umpire for the Ambridge cricket team. Good luck, and I hope Tony doesn't remain a martyr to Helen and Tom.

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 15.

    Thank you, Colin Skipp, for your wonderful portrayal of Tony over the decades. I hope you enjoy your well-deserved retirement. You will be a hard act for David Troughton to follow though I'm looking forward to hearing him. All the best to the old and the new Tony.

  • rate this
    +4

    Comment number 16.

    I wish Mr Skipp a very happy retirement and would like to thank him for his sterling work on the show as Tony Archer over all these years. I've been listening for decades, so I remember the young, fun-loving Tony of the past. Poor old Tony's had to put up with a lot since, and I'll never understand why he had to apologise to Helen for his very reasonable concerns regarding her donor insemination baby, instead of Helen apologizing to him for being so hostile. I look forward now to David Troughton's portrayal of the character; an excellent choice, I think.

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 17.

    I would just like to say Thank You to Colin Skipp. I have been listening to the Archers forever and will miss hearing Colin in the part of Tony. Best wishes for a happy and restful retirement Colin. I have seen David Troughton in several stage productions. He is an excellent actor with a super voice and I'm sure he will fill the part of Tony in his own way. Reading his interview he is aware of the 'big boots' he will have to fill but I'm sure he will fit into the Archers family and I wish him well.

  • rate this
    +3

    Comment number 18.

    Will miss you Colin - my earliest memories of the Archers are when Anthony William Daniel was born...
    (we had to listen to the Archers as babies in those days) It's funny that Peggy never calls you that now. You're still her baby.
    Look forward to David following on and let's hope Tony has a long and happy life

  • rate this
    +2

    Comment number 19.

    Best wishes to Colin Skipp for his retirement. He leaves many memories of good times and bad in Ambridge and at Bridge Farm.
    David T will be a welcome addition - looking forward to hearing him

  • rate this
    +1

    Comment number 20.

    Joining in to wish Colin Skipp a very happy retirement and to say how I've enjoyed his performances over the years. Welcome to David, who is joining at a very interesting time and hoping that Tony will finally stand up to Helen and her uber-controlling ways!

 

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