We had been pals for more than 40 years. If he or I needed a friend I think we would call on each other first. Eric is a very fine script writer and a very funny man. He first learned of this latent comedy when we were both signed for the BBC show Educating Archie, a show that won many awards. Apart from Eric and myself the show unearthed a wealth of talent, Tony Hancock, Julie Andrews, Beryl Reid, Hattie Jacques amd quite a few more.
When we were first given the scripts, usually on Sunday morning to be performed 'live' Sunday evening, we'd read our parts in flat early morning voices. It was the inflection of the delivery that brought Eric's scripts to life. It was how Hancock's 'Flippin' Kids' was born and how i made a national catch phrase of 'A good idea son!'
It was because of this early morning reading Eric decided to read his own comedy lines. It was usually half and hour of hilarity as he played each part himself; from this he managed to give us laughs that were unseen on a first reading, now we all knew how to attack the script.
From this his confidence grew until the series came to an end. He then entered the film world and his silent movies like The Plank and others plus the long-running television series with Hattie Jacques endeared him to audiences world- wide.