‘There are thousands of Alf Bradshaws among us’

Buzz Hawkins with his creation Billy Bradshaw ahead of his new show, 'Goosed'
Buzz Hawkins with his creation Billy Bradshaw ahead of his new show, 'Goosed'

Over 30 years Buzz Hawkins has taken The Bradshaws to the world, with fans from Fort William to Abu Dhab. The comic tells RACHEL HURST why his creations characters have stood the test of time

Five years since did he last toured a live show, Buzz Hawkins is back with his creation, The Bradshaws.

In one form or another the family have been around now for more than 30 years, either in radio shows or stage productions.

And for Goosed, their latest adventure, there is a danger of peace breaking out in their two-up-two-down home

Buzz said: “They’ve decided that the school hall needs a refurb so they’re raising money by doing a show,

Billy’s involved, Audrey’s in the wardrobe where Alf thinks is the perfect place for her, and Alf has finally had his arms twisted up his back to help out and he’s moving the piano to the school hall and then eventually he’s further cajoled into being the pantomime horse – he’s paying for his sins!

“It’s a family show, and the audience will get to see Billy in his pedal car, Alf and Audrey singing their comedy songs and a pantomime horse and a goose – it’s a proper great stage show, it’s bananas.”

The Bradshaws stories have been running on radio without a break since 1983 across the world and are broadcast daily on more than 30 radio stations, including BBC Merseyside, Fort William, Onda Cero, Salford City and Abu Dhabi.

“They’re still relevant but they’ve stayed true to who they have always been,” says Buzz, who voices the characters for the radio and live shows.

“I wrote the stories based on my parents but it soon became apparent that people are still like that, they just have mod-cons now, there are thousands of Alf Bradshaws among us.”

And the appeal spans generations, says Buzz.

“Loads of children come to see us,” he adds

“A lady was telling me that her 11-year-old son saves his pocket money up every week in order to buy the stories off Amazon.”

Self-confessed fans of The Bradshaw include Peter Kay, Chris Evans, Frank Skinner, Ken Dodd and Caroline Ahearne.

And there is even a 60ft long tableux of them at Blackpool Illuminations .

“You’ve arrived when you get that kind of tribute, it’s incredible,” adds Buzz.