Possibly the first time those two names have appeared in the same sentence.
Noel Gordon was a titan of British TV in the 70s & 80s. The star of ITV hit soap Crossroads, about a motel in the Midlands, she came across in interviews as a cross between grande dame, diva, and battle axe. With the emphasis on BATTLEAXE. Funny, given that she was starring in a ropey soap about a motel in the Midlands with even worse sets than Doctor Who and Blakes 7.
Noel died on 14 April 1985 of cancer. She’s buried in St. Mary’s Church, Ross-on-Wye, about an hour drive from where I live.
About a minute walk to the left of her relatively humble grave – she is buried next to her mother – lies Dennis ‘Pennies from Heaven’ Potter, arguably one of the greatest TV dramatists Britain has produced. I wonder if he knew, and what, if anything, they had in common? Apart from being buried in Ross, of course.
There’s a snarky little section in Potter’s Wikipedia entry with fellow scribbler Matthew Graham quoted as saying Potter had ‘come undone’ after ‘The Singing Detective’ when he began to believe ‘every line that dripped from his pen was a work of genius.’
Shortly before he was diagnosed with terminal cancer of the pancreas and liver Potter’s wife discovered she had breast cancer. She died nine days before him in May 1994.
For the record, Potter was a fierce critic of Rupert Murdoch, and named his cancer tumour ‘Rupert’.