Wednesday, 24 November 2010

The Grape Street Set - Why Was It Re-Built In Brick?

The old brick-built facade in the early 1980s. How can I date this? Because the new front door at No 3, fitted in 1980, is in place!

Andrew writes:

I've just read on Corriepedia that the original wood and lath exterior set which was erected on the Grape Street lot in 1968 was rebuilt in brick in 1969 possibly because of the advent of colour TV showing up the fake bricks. Is this merely supposition? I always thought that HV Kershaw wanted it rebuilt in brick so that it would be more hardy?

You are probably better off contacting the "Corriepedia" people, Andrew, but according to all the resources I have at my disposal (including Mr Kershaw's 1981 book, The Street Where I Live), HV Kershaw was worried by the effects of a single winter on the original structure and asked for money to rebuild it in brick.

The original outdoor Street terrace set made its final appearance on-screen around early November 1969 - in an episode that would have been recorded in the October. The building of the new set then took place, in time to avoid the worst of the winter weather.

I have never read that the impact of colour on the Street set had any bearing on the decision to rebuild the terrace facade. Mr Kershaw's concern seemed to be simply that it would withstand the elements. As he was in charge at the time, and left records of his concerns, I go with them.

In fact, I can heartily recommend The Street Where I Live (1981 - updated edition published 1985). It's a fabulous insight into the first twenty-five years of The Street by a man who was there from the start.

A totally engrossing read!

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