‘Z Cars’ Party – photos and review.

What a lovely way to start #CIF17.

On Wednesday June 7 guests gathered at the Camberley Theatre for the opening night of this year’s Camberley International Festival.  They were treated to a wonderful selection of songs from Dean Dyson in the bar (whist drinking the complimentary drinks obviously!).

292A1889ad Z CARS event entertainer

Guests then moved on through to the main auditorium where venue manager Andy Edmeads welcomed them and introduced Ian Cullen (below).

292A1940ad Z CARS event Ian Cullen

Ian, who starred in the iconic BBC series from 1969-1975 as DC Joe Skinner, co-hosted this party and gave a introduction speech detailing the history of ‘Z Cars’. Once he had finished, everyone settled down to enjoy ‘Pieces’, and episode from 1973.

After the screening, various cast and crew were invited to the stage and the audience were treated to some wonderful memories and anecdotes about working on such classic BBC series as ‘Dr Who’ and of course, ‘Z Cars’.

Here are Bernard Holley (PC Newcombe 1967–71), Margot Hayhoe (production assistant on ‘Z Cars’ ) and Tim Combe, (director on Z Cars from 1968 to 1973).

292A1986ad Z CARS event Bernard Holley - Margot Hayhoe - Tim Combe

Ian Cullen and Bernard Holley, old friends, reunited!




Welcome to #CIF17!

Tonight is the night, the glasses are being polished, the Prosecco is cooling and the cinema screen is being unfurled!

We start the 2017 Camberley International Festival this evening at the Camberley Theatre, with our very special ‘Z Cars’ party.

Everyone will be greeted with a welcome glass of Prosecco or soft drink.

Then, the wonderful Dean Dyson will be singing in the bar – here’s a clip of him singing – it’s had over a million views!

We will then go through to the main auditorium  and watch an episode of the iconic BBC series ‘Pieces’ from 1973.

When the episode has finished, there will be a Q&A hosted by Ian Cullen, who played DC Skinner from 1969 – 75. We are very privileged to welcome these actors and crew from ‘Z Cars’:

Bernard Holley (PC Newcombe 1967–71),

Bernard first rose to prominence in the long-running UK police drama series Z-Cars as PC Newcombe, a character he would play for four years from 1967 to 1971. . He is also well known for his appearances in Doctor Who, in The Tomb of the Cybermen (1967), as the Axon Man in The Claws of Axos (1971), Other regular television roles include The Gentle Touch (1982–84), and the follow-up series C.A.T.S. Eyes in 1985. He later played Richard in two seasons of Birds of a Feather, and featured in the popular drama series Frost. His recent television appearances include Hollyoaks, EastEnders, Doctors and Holby City.

Bernard also has many film roles, including Travels with My Aunt and the cult film The Deadly Females). He has also voiced hundreds of commercials. On stage he has graced theatre all over the UK

Holley has also worked consistently on the stage in theatres all over the UK, including. His most recent stage role was in Allan Monkhouse’s Mary Broome at the Orange Tree Theatre, Richmond, in 2011.

Margot Hayhoe (production assistant on ‘Z Cars’ )

Joined the BBC in 1964 as secretary in BBC Enterprises – she then progressed to the Drama Serials Department where she worked up the ladder from Assistant Floor Manager to Associate Producer. She worked in Doctor Who, EastEnders, Silent Witness, Man in the Iron Mask, War and Peace and many other BBC productions. She left the staff in 1994 and worked as a freelancer until 2005 when she retired for production work – she occasionally works as a background artist.

Tim Combe, worked as a director on Z Cars from 1968 to 1973.

He also directed, among things, episodes of

Doctor Who  from 1970 including the celebrated

Doctor Who and the Mind of Evil (BBC, 1971)

The Doctors (BBC, 1970/71)

Ballet Shoes (BBC, 1975)

The Brothers (BBC, 1976)

Angels (BBC, 1976)

Z-Cars (BBC, 1968-1973)

There are still a few places left – if you would like to attend, please email Jo.Bartlett@surreyheath.gov.uk before 4pm today (June 7).

This time next week!

Only one week until this magnificent gig takes place at The Central Bar (Working Men’s Club) in Camberley. Friday 9 7pm! Cheap booze and big fun! FREE ENTRY! Blackwaters will be playing the Download Festival the next day and supporting The Libertines in August. They are so busy gigging at the minute – see them in a small venue while you still can!


Oysterband C.I.F. Interview

We’re really looking forward to seeing the mighty Oysterband when they roll into town on Sunday 11 June. They play Camberley Theatre at 7:30pm and tickets are £20.

Oyster collage square no art web

We caught up with singer and mandolin player John Jones to ask a few questions, ahead of their show.

Given the line-up changes over the years, what do you think is always at the heart of your music?

We have a deep affection for the folk tradition in our country and a radical edge to our songwriting and we love making people dance. Passion and poetry –we hope! 

Do you think there has been a change in your sound with each tweak to the name?

We were a raw ceilidh band at the beginning, very acoustic and it just got louder and more electric with time. Strangely it has moved back in recent years to a more acoustic sound but that combination of cello, violin, guitars and harmonies is still at the heart of what we do.

You’ve played 35 countries – do you have a favourite?

Playing here is still great but Canada, Denmark, Germany and Spain have been very good to us.

This is your first visit to Camberley – what can the audience expect?

It is a very special show for our 40th Celebration and we’ll take the audience through every era of our rather strange musical journey…and we’ll have fun. 

It must feel great to still be winning awards. Have you still got any unfulfilled ambitions though?

Awards from your contemporaries melt the most cynical of hearts. We made so much of our early music before the BBC Folk Awards even existed, so when they finally came our way we felt……ready.

Do you think you’ll record with June Tabor again?

Recording with June is very special and rare but never say never.

Is there a particular way that you write songs?

Lyrics often start with me or Ian, with Alan shaping the song almost by instinct. That fine and difficult balance between one person’s inspiration and its collective realisation between the three of us is where the trouble and the triumph usually lies.

Where do you find inspiration?

Inspiration…. !! The coffee cup, the wine bottle, the English landscape, the state of the country, our rather overworked imaginations. Take your pick.

Who are you listening to at the minute – do you have favourites for the tour bus?

 James.  Eliza Carthy and The Wayward Band.  Fats Domino.  (Ask us again next week.)

Thanks John – can’t wait for the show! Here’s their brilliant new song ‘ My Country Too’