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W1A fans call for lockdown revival after hilarious Jason Watkins and Hugh Bonneville Twitter exchange

Watkins and Bonneville tweeted in character in response to a report BBC employees have been told to wear tags in order to stick to social distancing guidelines.

Published: Friday, 8th January 2021 at 11:58 am

One of the TV highlights of the first lockdown was undoubtedly the surprise W1A reunion – which saw the cast of the hit BBC sitcom parody work Zoom meetings in a brief five-minute clip.


And now fans of the series are calling for another revival after two of the show's cast members enjoyed a hilarious exchange on Twitter.

Hugh Bonneville and Jason Watkins tweeted in character, as Ian Fletcher and Simon Harwood respectively, in response to a news story that BBC employees have reportedly been told to wear tags in order to help adhere to social distancing guidelines.

Quote tweeting the article, Bonneville wrote, "Yes no I mean I think Timmy initially meant it as a bit of light-hearted new year you know but since Syncopatidistance went down actual barge poles are being handed out in reception. Is anyone across this?"

And in reply, Watkins tweeted, "Brilliant sorry Ian. I’ve got my social distancing pole stuck in the revolving doors here in reception. Currently jammed. Security can’t get me out became they can’t get near me because if social distancing. Must say I’m panicking a bit; I’ve squashed Timmys croissant. #help!"

In a follow-up tweet he added, "Just wondering if you are near Dear? I know people have problems getting from one side if the building to another. Seeing lots of people wearing headphones to drown out noise of their distancing alarms. As we are in bubble, perhaps you can release me from the doors. No air..."

The exchange went down a treat with fans of the show and quickly prompted some to ask for a lockdown-themed revival of the series.

"Need another series," one fan tweeted. "Like Staged, a 15-minute nightly update on managing the Downing Street press conferences and which celebrity should be introducing them."

Another fan linked to the reunion from the first lockdown in 2020 and asked, "Please PLEASE can we have another one of these. The nation expects..." while a third simply wrote, "Bring back W1A lockdown version. We need it."

The clip from earlier in the year saw Ian Fletcher lead a Zoom meeting, informing his colleagues of a new Bounce Back Group which was intended to “imagine what the new normal will look like and to begin to plot a path towards it from wherever it is that we are now”.

In addition to Bonneville and Watkins, the clip also included cast members Monica Dolan, Sarah Parish, and David Westhead reprising their roles from the sitcom.


W1A received much praise for its hilariously accurate depiction of the British media when it first aired from 2014 to 2017 and some fans have long been hoping for further series – hopes that will no doubt be fuelled by exchanges like this one.

If you’re looking for more to watch, check out our TV guide.

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