Thursday, 22 March 2018

This Morning I Had A Conversation With #SpikeMilligan…


DC Editor Adam writes…

This morning I had a Conversation With Spike Milligan…




Spike was on my mind as he cropped up on the Rock'n'Roll London Pub walk last night. On that tour, we passed the Monty Python plaque (one of my favourite plaques anywhere in the world)…




A discussion ensued in the group about Python and The Beatles (a most knowledgable bunch, my group last night). We talked of Python's influence on modern comedy and pop culture and then the 1950s BBC radio comedy The Goon Show cropped up.

One of our number, from the U.S, had never heard of The Goons. In the context, I was able to apply one of my favourite descriptions: The Goons are Elvis to Monty Python's Beatles.

Nods all round from the group.

It made me think of Spike Milligan, the founding genius of The Goons, so on my morning constitutional today, I went to visit his statue.


The comedian and writer Spike Milligan lived in Finchley from 1955 to 1974. This statue, in the gardens of Stephens House, N3 is the work of John Somerville. And it's lovingly done.

Spike sits in welcoming pose, inviting us to have a seat beside him…


The masks of comedy & tragedy appear – Milligan famously struggled with mental health issues throughout his life.


The fairies are also in attendance…


… one of the fairies is reading a Goon Show script…


As are his Goon Show colleagues Peter Sellers and Harry Seacombe…




The soldiers remind us of Spike's service during WWII, an experience that shaped his world view…





… and forms the basis of his vivid memoir Adolf Hitler My Part in His Downfall (1971)…






Thanks, Spike. On the first spring-like morning of the year, you lifted my spirits.

(And thanks John Somerville, too.)




Find Spike here…





And for those of you, like my new friend from last night's tour, who are unaware of Spike and his talents, here he is in action…





A London Walk costs £10 – £8 concession. To join a London Walk, simply meet your guide at the designated tube station at the appointed time. Details of all London Walks can be found at www.walks.com.



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