John Challis: Brilliant Benidorm was a real delight

There’s been a brilliant build-up to the new ITV series of Benidorm and I’m thoroughly looking forward to it being shown on our screens.

The tenth series of Benidorm is on its way
The tenth series of Benidorm is on its way

Making a TV show and watching it on the television is a lengthy process.

It’s remarkable to think that we were out in Benidorm a year ago, filming for many months, and that the viewers have to wait until now to see it.

Our brilliant writer, Derren Litten, spends about six months in Benidorm and six months in the UK.

I know that he’s really looking forward to Wednesday’s transmission at 9pm. His Twitter feed almost went into meltdown when last Wednesday’s documentary was screened with so many fans getting in touch. Derren has really tapped into something special and he’s a brilliant writer; it’s no wonder Benidorm remains so popular.

A big storyline for the series involves my character, Monty Staines, and the long-suffering Solana Hotel manager, Sherrie Hewson.

It’s been interesting to see some of the coverage of that, with lots of the papers running previews. I had to laugh when I read the preview in the Radio Times.

The writer Patrick Mulkern described my character as being shifty and Sherrie’s as being a harridan. I tweeted him straight away.

“Joyce a ‘harridan’, Monty ‘shifty’? I beg your pardon - that’s a bit harsh! Look at us, we’re like Benidorm’s answer to Cary Grant and Grace Kelly.”

Benidorm really is as much fun off screen as it is on. It’s a great programme to make with a wonderful cast and crew and there were plenty of high-jinks when the cameras stopped rolling. In many ways, it’s strange to be looking ahead to the sun, sand and sea of our favourite sitcom when it’s been so bitterly cold back home.

During the past week or so, I’ve been working with my gardener to tidy things up. Our place has been transformed from untidy brown sticks to nicely pruned and cleared and no bonfires have been lit during the course of our work.

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