Only Fools and Horses is a British classic. The sitcom was originally broadcast from 1981 to 1991 and officially ended in 2003 after several special episodes.
It follows Del Boy and Rodney Trotter’s lives in Peckham as the two try to get rich through schemes that often end hilariously. For the first three series of the show, Lennard Pearce played the boys’ grandad Ted Trotter, who was better known simply as Grandad.-
But after suffering two heart attacks, Lennard passed away at the age of 69. Not wanting to recast Grandad, the show’s writers instead replaced the character with Uncle Albert, played by Buster Merryfield.
Uncle Albert, whose full name was Albert Gladstone Trotter, was Grandad’s brother. He arrived in Peckham following Grandad’s death and attended his funeral before being taken in by Del Boy. Throughout his time on the show, Albert was a hindrance to the Trotter brothers and Del Boy occasionally referred to him as ‘old git’.
Uncle Albert is best known for telling overly dramatic war stories and fans quickly fell in love with his tales. But there was only one thing Buster needed to take on the iconic role.
According to Buster’s obituary in The Guardian, he said of the show’s producers: “All they wanted to know was whether I could put on a cockney accent. As a Battersea boy, I told them, I would have no problem.”
The show’s producers did briefly consider a character named Auntie Doris instead of Uncle Albert but according to The Sun, Del Boy actor David Jason said: “You couldn’t say, ‘Shut up you old git’ to a woman or bundle her into the back of the van.”Mighty ScoopsDonatella Versace, 66, Takes off Makeup, Leaves Us With No WordsTip ParentsPole Vaulter Gave Fans A Little Too Muchby TaboolaSponsored Links
And Buster loved playing the character. In a resurfaced clip in which he was interviewed by Sir Terry Wogan, Buster said: “One of the greatest things that’s come out of all this is that when I walk along the street, I suppose seven out of 10 people recognise me, but people break into a smile, and that’s wonderful. It’s like magic.”