Children's Film Foundation - Betcher 1971 - Keith Chegwin

Few child stars have managed to maintain such a varied career into adulthood as Cheggers (aka Keith Chegwin). Did Elizabeth Taylor end up on Naked Jungle (2000) or harassing GMTV viewers with cheques for £10k at the crack of dawn? No she didn't.

A very young Cheggers started his career in a clutch of comic capers for the Children's Film Foundation. He even turned up as Martin Shaw's son in Polanski's Macbeth (1971). After various episodes of The Liver Birds (1972), Z Cars (1972) and The Adventures of Black Beauty (1974), Cheggers finally found his niche as Noel Edmonds' sidekick in Multi-Coloured Swap Shop (1976-81) before unleashing the hyperactive madness that was Cheggers Plays Pop (1978-86).

Here is one of Cheggers' earliest performances - as an improbably angelic (and just a little prissy) chap demonstrating his cycling prowess in this film made to promote the National Cycling Proficiency Scheme. Notice how Cheggers hardly says a word; clearly the filmmakers didn't think that delicate southerners were quite ready for his Scouse accent. (Robin Baker)


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