Acting legend Sir David Jason brought the streets of Doncaster to a standstill yesterday as he returned to begin filming for the Open All Hours Christmas special.
The television favourite was back at his familiar corner shop in Balby for the first time in nearly 30 years as a three-day shoot got underway.
The star donned the brown coat made famous by the late Ronnie Barker as miserly shopkeeper Arkwright in the original BBC smash which ran between 1973 and 1985 as the cameras rolled for scenes involving actress Stephanie Cole, who has reprised her role as Mrs Featherstone for the show.
And scores of people, armed with cameras and recording devices, turned up to catch a glimpse of the action, being shot at the Beautique hairdressing salon on the corner of Lister Avenue and Scarth Avenue.
Set designers and dressers spent the weekend preparing the salon for the return of the sitcom, which will see Sir David reprise his role as put-upon errand boy Granville, who now owns the corner shop following the death of Arkwright.
The famous Morris Minor car driven by Nurse Gladys Emmanuel was also parked up in the street.
Rosie Mae-Halstead, 21, who lives in the flat next door to the famed shop, was among those who had arrived from 7am to see the stars.
She said: “It seems totally surreal to have someone as famous as David Jason in our street. It is really exciting.
“It is such a great show and it is amazing to have something like this happening on our doorstep.”
Producer Gareth Edwards was delighted by the shop’s transformation and is confident the show will prove a Christmas cracker - with young and old alike.
He said: “It’s not just about a nostalgia trip. It’s about taking the story forward too. Who knows, if it proves popular we might make a full series.”
Filming of interior scenes will take place in Salford in early December, with the finished show as well as an accompanying documentary likely to top the festive ratings.