Back in 2013 Still Open All Hours aired on Boxing Day as a special 40th anniversary sequel to Ronnie Barker’s classic comedy Open All Hours, promptly attracting millions of viewers and inspiring the BBC to commission a full run of episodes.
Three years on the David Jason-starring corner shop series has had two full series, with this festive special kicking off a third run that’ll bring the episode total to 20 (compared to the old series’ 26-episode total). Not b-b-bad, as the original Arkwright might have said.
What time is Still Open All Hours on this Christmas?
The episode will air on Boxing Day, 26th December at 8.30pm on BBC1, marking the fourth consecutive Boxing Day that the series has appeared.
Who’s in it?
Sir David Jason continues to reprise his role as Granville from the original Open All Hours, having inherited the corner shop from his uncle Arkwright (Ronnie Barker) prior to the original pilot.
Joining him will be James Baxter as his son Leroy, Tim Healy as Gastric, Johnny Vegas as Wet Eric, Brigit Forsyth as Madge, Kulvinder Ghir as Cyril, Stephanie Cole as Mrs Delphine Featherstone, Maggie Ollerenshaw as Mavis, Sally Lindsay as Mrs Agnew, Geoffrey Whitehead as Mr Newbold, Janine Duvitski as Mrs Bridges and Nina Wadia as Mrs Hussein among others in the ensemble cast.
However, this special will see one noticeable missing cast member – Lynda Baron’s Nurse Gladys Emmanuel, who appeared in almost every episode of both Open All Hours and Still Open All Hours thus far. Unfortunately, filming clashed with Baron’s commitments to EastEnders, where she plays Linda Clarke.
What’s the story?
The episode will see Granville and Gastric turn marriage counsellors, while Leroy dons an elf costume to avoid his own relationship problems. Elsewhere, Mrs Featherstone tries to bring the whole gang together to defeat rival Finkle Street in a Christmas carolling competition – which might need a little bit of extra help from Granville himself…
When will the rest of the series air?
Episode 2 of the new series is expected to be shown just under a week after the Christmas special on New Year’s Day (Sunday 1st January), with subsequent episodes airing every Sunday.