Green Cross Code

The Green Cross Code posterThe Green Cross Code was a road safety campaign where Dave Prowse, the bloke who played Darth Vader in Star Wars wore a superhero type suit and told kids how to cross the road safely. This was in the time before there were many special effects so it mattered that he was quite tall. I think he was also the jolly green giant, but can’t find any reference to that even on Wikipedia. So maybe it’s just my bad memory.

The Green Cross Code was a set of rules, one of which was that you weren’t supposed to cross behind parked cars, but to move further down the street to find a place without a parked car so that you could see clearly to cross. Of course, times have changed a lot since this public information film was shot. I imagine that street is now double-parked all the way down with speed bumps dissecting the road.

A number of celebrities would also appear in these films, such as Kevin Kegan (footballer) and Alvin Stardust (rock star). Presumably this was meant to appeal to the agegroup who would swoon over these people. Didn’t do nothing for me as I was only about five at the time! I liked the Green Cross Code man because he had a light-up watch that could transport him out of his little CCTV peep show and into the street. Fab stuff.

Another favourite road safety campaign of the Seventies was Tufty, as seen in this lovely animation. I was in the Tufty Club but only vaguely remember it, badges and the like. I think Tufty taught me how to ride a bike.


Josie Henley-Einion, author, blogger, Legend in my own Living Room

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Black Lace

Black Lace Greatest Hits (also available as a blank tape)This band, loved and hated by party goers, are more famous for their eighties hits such as Agadoo, The Music Man, Superman and The Conga, but Black Lace began in the Seventies and represented the UK in the 1979 Eurovision Song Contest. (Eurovision is an oft-repeated theme on PopandCrisps, perhaps for its tack value).

According to Wikipedia many of these hits are actually covers, though people may think they are originals. For instance Agadoo is a translation of a French song, Agadou, and Superman was an Italian song. Well, well, who’d have thought that such uber-tack could be non-English?

I have fond memories of Black Lace, dancing around the garden on summer evenings and in the discos I used to frequent. There is something about being in your early teens that makes really annoying and repetitive songs seem attractive. They certainly made us giggle.


Josie Henley-Einion, author, blogger, Legend in my own Living Room

Little and Large

Little and LargeSyd Little and Eddie Large (not their real names of course) were a comedy duo who started out in the Sixties but had their own TV show during the Seventies and Eighties. According to Wikipedia, Little and Large were expected to become successors for Morcambe and Wise, however they have not achieved the same level of international fame.

I remember watching them when I was a kid and they did this men in suits and bow-ties routine, though I don’t remember the jokes at all. Syd had these glasses that made his eyes look huge and Eddie was fat. I think that was the extent of their comedy. Similar to Laurel and Hardy, they had a power relationship on stage, with the thinner bloke being pushed around and downtrodden. They both still work the circuits but not together.

Eddie Large also did impressions, he used to put a hat on and pretend to be Benny from Crossroads, speaking ungrammatically and with a silly smile. He also put ping pong balls in his eyes and pretended to be the blind old man from Kung Fu, speaking in a fake Chinese accent. I doubt he does either of these any more, but it’s surprising that it was only a matter of twenty years or so ago that he was doing these impressions that would probably be illegal now.


Josie Henley-Einion, author, blogger, Legend in my own Living Room

Tyrell P34 F1 Racing Car

Kim P Moody with more Formula One Racing

JTyrell P34 at Monaco

While Niki Lauda was busy trying to win his second F1 World Championship, Tyrell Racing was producing a rather special F1 racing car. Derek Gardner, their chief designer had produced a car with tiny, 10-inch diameter wheels at the front. The idea was to reduce the frontal area, thus reducing aerodynamic drag.

The problem with the small diameter wheels was the reduced area of contact with the road giving poorer grip when cornering. Gardner’s answer – to give the Tyrell P34 four wheels at the front instead of two!

The Tyrell P34’s first race was the Spanish Grand Prix in 1976, with two cars driven by Jody Scheckter and Patrick Depailler. Its best ever result was the Swedish Grand Prix with a 1 – 2 finish. Jody Scheckter is still the only driver ever to win a Grand Prix in a six wheeled car.

Schekter left Elf Team Tyrell at the end of 76, and was replaced by Ronnie Peterson for the 1977 season. The car was not as good as in 76, largely due to the lack of tyre development by Goodyear, and did not reappear in 1978. It was a short lived chapter in F1 history. The P34 was one of the two most radical designs to have succeeded in F1. The other was the Brabham BT46B Fancar.