Taking a Breath of Fresh Air with Garry Bushell

6a01156fa075f4970c01630616e3c1970d2TV critic, broadcaster and author Garry Bushell explains that although he doesn’t actually do much gardening, his garden is much used and loved. “I’ve been so busy writing all I do outside is mow the lawn. My wife Tanya is out there most of the time, she’s even made a herb garden and we have a trampoline, a football net for the younger kids and a great stag which has been crafted from an old tree.”

The controversial TV critic who has 13 TV’s in his house continues, “The garden is only 100 yards from the busy High Street but is completely peaceful and a lovely suntrap. Woolworth’s used to back onto the bottom of our garden and we used to watch the squirrels pinch chocolate bars from the skip and get really hyper in the trees which was hysterical. We’ve also got wild parrots and foxes around too. I am a City boy. I love the bustling life although I do like visiting the country. You get divorced from reality if you don’t leave a city now and then. I’m not really outdoorsy but I enjoy walking and I do take the kids to Quasar and run about there a bit.”

Garry also confesses to being ‘a little bit Welsh.’ “ My middle name is Llewellyn and my son now lives just outside of Cardiff with his Welsh wife. I love Wales.”

Celebrating his 25th anniversary this year, his infamous TV column Bushell on the Box began 1987. “There is still lots of fantastic TV out there,” he explains, “ but 95% isn’t British. Even Homeland which has a British cast, is an American Show. We’ve lost the knack of writing comedy and drama. Comedy at the moment is controlled by intelligent people and written for intelligent people. We need more working class writers like John O Sullivan and programmes like Only Fools and Horses and Steptoe and Son.”

I have been campaigning for years to get a Benny Hill statue in Southampton. He was so ahead of his time and one of my favourite entertainers. I’ve got support from people like Barbara Windsor, Roy Hudd, Bobby Ball, Brian Conley, Bradley Walsh, Joe Pasquale, former Hill’s Angel Sue Upton and the rapper Snoop Dogg , who all appreciated his genius.”

Loved by many, loathed by a few and described by America’s Howard Stern as ‘my Ambassador in England’ Garry has many varied interests including playing in his band The Gonads, “We play a lot of gigs abroad and range from being very good to appalling.” He laughs. “Last week we played in a pub that was more of an ashtray really and it was all pretty awful.”

At least his writing is well received, with Dance Craze making No 1 in the HMV charts early this year. “It is all about my experiences with the 2-tone bands and was so popular, I’ve been asked to write another two books about my mod memories and also my time with rock bands like Iron Maiden and Def Leppard. I’m also 32,000 words into a comic fantasy and writing the third part of the Face trilogy, called Grouch. I’m writing too much,” he laughs, “I was thinking I need to do a bit less, and give up drinking, but Britain’s Got Talent drove me to lager.”

“We are also turning the face into a film script, got a factual documentary about the Cockney Rejects coming out and I’m writing a pilot for a new sitcom. And that’s why I only have time to mow the lawn!”

Find out more about Garry at www.garry-bushell.co.uk

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