John Challis, the actor most famous for his portrayal of dodgy second-hand car salesman Boycie in Only Fools & Horses was recently in the town of Wells, where he met with some truly dedicated fans.
Employees at Webbs Garage heard Challis was coming to town, and wanted to arrange a meeting. And they had good reason to want a meeting – for a number of months they had been working on redecorating a recovery van with artwork from the legendary show.
Nathan Willmott, owner of the garage, had this to say about his tasty wee project: “We’re very big Only Fools fans, hence why we did the truck,” he explains. “It took us around six months to complete. We weren’t happy with some of the details so we altered it until it was perfect.”
“We heard [John Challis] was at the Swan Hotel doing a book signing,” said Mr Willmott. “We spoke with [his agents] who put him on and he said he would be really happy to come and have a look at the lorry and sign it for us.
“When he got here he said, ‘What have we got here then’. He had a look around the lorry, then stood back and said one of his famous lines, ‘Oh no, Del Boy, not The Penguin, more like The Joker’. He was a really nice chap and he said it would be ironic if he broke down and we recovered him.”
John Challis took the opportunity to sign the decorated truck as well, and Mr Willmott has indicated that he and his staff intend to preserve it for posterity’s sake.
Their next goal is to secure signatures from more cast members, with Rodney (Nicholas Lyndhurst) looking like the next potential candidate.