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Nigel Pargetter - share your memories

Wednesday 12 January 2011, 15:11

Keri Davies Keri Davies Web Producer, The Archers

Jack Firth (Freddie), Graham Seed (Nigel) and Georgie Feller (Lily)

We're very aware of what the character of Nigel Pargetter meant to many listeners, and how much they will miss him.

Between 4pm and 8pm tomorrow (13 Jan), we'll be running an online event here on The Archers blog. This will coincide with the episode featuring Nigel's funeral. We'll be sharing moments from the character's history, and inviting listeners to contribute their own memories and tributes.

It will be a sort of online Book of Condolences, a permanent tribute to this much-loved character and to Graham Seed, the actor who played him.

It will take a similar form to the live online coverage of the 60th anniversary day, during which Radio 7 broadcast classic episodes, and interviews with current cast and production staff.

Do please join us as we say goodbye to Nigel.

Keri Davies is an Archers scriptwriter and web producer.


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    Comment number 21.

    er... the murderer arranges a memorial event. Bit grisly, no?

    Dear SWs, producers et al... I'm guessing from last blog and this one that you have been advised, or you're assuming, that we're all grieving for Nigel. If so, I think you might be wrong.

    I for one am very very sorry to have lost him. But if there's grief, it's for the loss of the delicious pleasures of the subtlety of small and big events which = The Archers to me. Like the superb writing and acting of Phil's death, for example.

    You'd placate a lot of people by acknowledging that you misjudged the anniversary episode, rather than glossing over it, and getting back to brilliant small stuff like Susan and Vicky's gossipy scene, which was vintage.

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    Comment number 22.

    Amazing. Still no answers from the ivory tower and then this.

    Keri - you write :
    It's been very busy with 60th anniversary stuff, as you can imagine.

    Yet you can find time to answer selective posts and ignore the flood of deeply felt criticism.

    I suggest that the editorial team gets together, reviews their unacceptable performance in the last two weeks (in the view of your listeners), and addresses the complaints of your customers.

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    Comment number 23.

    And so it looks as though the Headmistresses ticking off gets buried even deeper into the bowels of Ambridge.

    I would however like to thank Keri for putting this blog up and giving me the opportunity to personally thank Graham Seed for the years of pleasure he has given to both of the ex-listeners in our home.

    I was hugely impressed by Graham’s professionalism in the interviews and newspaper articles in which he appeared after the broadcast of the 60th ‘Calibration’. Given that he was left to stew with the news of his termination all over the Christmas period while being contractually unable to tell anyone what was on his mind I think he has come out of this shining, while the editorial team seem to be wallowing in something nasty in Ruth and David’s yard.

    Bless you Graham and all the very best for the future. I feel sure something good will be coming your way very soon.

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    Comment number 24.

    [A pleasant, amusing, kindly character who deserved much better.]

    I don't see how a character can "deserve" anything - good or bad. Just as well readers didn't all throw their copy of Little Women on the fire when the sweet, good-natured and much loved character Beth died. Fiction would be a bit predictable if only the dastardly characters were killed off.

    I must admit I'm a little impatient to get the funeral over and done with Keri, then the real fall-out can begin. I'm looking forward to that but will tune in tomorrow as well, to see if Jill gets her way and the poor twins get the chance to say goodbye to their father. It must be a tough set of scripts for such young actors.

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    Comment number 25.

    Oh please.

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    Comment number 26.

    BB if you want characters with a certain degree of credibility and continuity, and if you wish to respect the integrity of the drama, then you don't do this to a character just to cause a sensation. The character and the audience both deserved better.

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    Comment number 27.

    Goodbye Nigel - you were a decent chap but that is why you had to go. VW is ratings chasing and you are her sacrificial lamb.

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    Comment number 28.

    "It will be a sort of online Book of Condolences, a permanent tribute to this much-loved character and to Graham Seed, the actor who played him."

    My reaction to this is that it is very peculiar ... almost sick. You are broadcasting the funeral of a fictitious character and are asking us to produce a Book of Condolences.

    I think someone has lost the plot!!

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    Comment number 29.

    Nigel may (re Borsetshire Blue's post above) not deserve better treatment since he is a fictonal character, but in that case nor does he need a wake.

    However I believe Graham Seed, who created a believable and lovable character who obviously brought enjoyment to many listeners' lives, DID deserve better than to have his character killed off not because of an organic plot development but for a weirdly inappropriate 'celebration'.

    Thank you Graham for your characterisation of Nigel, it was a fine feat of acting. Like the poster above, I also hope and believe that the future holds great things for you.

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    Comment number 30.

    Keri - I get where you're going with this, I really do ....(sorry, can't help it - but the continual failure to address the real issues raised makes me wonder if we're even speaking the same language any more. You know, the old 'same words, just not necessarily in the same order' ....)

    .... Anyway, I think you'll find that this page has been pre-empted by the earlier blog post 'Graham seed on playing, and leaving, Nigel Pargetter' which is full of how listeners felt and still feel about him / them.

    I'll echo the point above though - again. Yes, we're sad that Nigel's dead - and very sad that Graham Seed has been dispensed with too - but still no-one seems to understand that the major questions to answer are: -

    Why on earth a celebration of such a fanTAStic milestone led the Editor to feel '... that the event had to be deeply traumatic' (VW). WHY?

    Which dictionary translates 'Celebrate' as 'Traumatic'?

    Another death means yet more sadness, more hurt, more inter-Archer-family rows. Repetition. When are you going to get tired of this theme? and Why is repetition good listening? Why should I make myself start listening again to hear weeping, recrimination and a story line that (in the real world) would affect everyone in such a small community for weeks and months to come? Why?

    Are you really SO short of imagination and/or bored with the what TA is about that you're all prepared to let it go?

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    Comment number 31.

    Sorry, Keri, but I find this quasi 'Book of Condolences'/'funeral feast for Nigel' sop to the angry audience a cheap, distasteful and inadequate exercise.

    I am not simply mourning 'Nigel's' expendability on the altar of ratings-chasing sensationalism running counter to his and David Archer's characters; I am mourning what has been happening to the programme particularly over the last year/18 months (especially with the Helen SL, first with Annette and then with the AI Baybee) as 'Eastenderism'. Somebody must be steering that from on high.

    Above all, I am IRL still mighty riled, in professional terms, about the treatment of Graham Seed as 'Nigel's' actor.

    7.02-7.15 pm was once a sacred time in my household. In the last 10 days I could hardly be bothered to turn the radio on, or if it was on, my attention quickly wandered back to whatever I was doing before.

    I never, ever thought I would sign myself off as an ex-listener to TA, but that is what I must do now, to be truthful. Not a flounce, not a tantrum, just a realization that the programme is being steered in ways that no longer remotely interest me. Nor is this a pathological avoidance of bad things happening in soap drama; thinking of Joe and the ferret-killings in Meadow Rise still makes me well up.


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    Comment number 32.

    We have a wound and rather than dress it, you rub salt in it.

    Are you under instruction not to engage with any comments here relating to why you, as a writing team, broke the bond of trust with your audience?

    If you do not want to join the conversation then don't wite blog posts like these.

    And where is Vanessa Whiburn when all this is going on? She's only too happy to use the media to announce SATTC but goes missing when the audience slaps her in the face.

    Message to Vanessa WE'RE OVER HERE!!! CAN'T YOU HEAR US???!!!

    We are not amused.

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    Comment number 33.

    Mg 6

    Absolutely spot on.

    You guys on the TA team! You really bo just take the bicuit. This blog subject and the 'Book of Condolence' notion is about as tasteless and cynically exploitative a follow-up as you could perpetrate: I mean, who the heck thinks up these appalling wheezes, because frankly they deserve sacking.

    In a hole, mate, stop digging, eh?! Don't get out the pneumatic drill and /really/ give it a go!

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    Comment number 34.

    For heaven's sake Keri just take a deep breath and have the guts to post a notice saying "Sorry ........we got it wrong."

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    Comment number 35.

    Re n° 28

    "You are broadcasting the funeral of a fictitious character and are asking us to produce a Book of Condolences. "

    Wanna send a wreath!

    And the pair of boottees I've been knitting for Henry Archer.


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    Comment number 36.

    You must have lost the plot again!! What a ridiculous idea. Why don't you in Archers Inc realise what is going on here with your listeners.

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    Comment number 37.

    I'm not happy

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    Comment number 38.

    Well, we won't be short of mourners at the wake, will we? Where do we send the wreaths?
    I do hope the online wake ends up with two uncles having a fight, an elderly aunt discovering the joys of swearing and a couple of the younger mourners siphoning off a bottle of port. What larks!

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    Comment number 39.


    Nelson, how good to hear from you. I thought you were dead. I am so sorry to hear that you, like so many of us, are not happy though. Perhaps Keri’s next attempt to bury Vanessa’s blog could be Advise on depression and how to cope with it.

  • rate this

    Comment number 40.



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