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The John Bensalhia Column: Long live Hooky Street

If Only Fools And Horses had started in the 21st century, it wouldn't have lasted for more than two series.

Let me explain. Back in the early 1980s, a brand new sitcom was written by John Sullivan, charting the misadventures of a wayward Peckham family, the Trotters. Three generations were spanned in a poky flat, which was part of Nelson Mandela House. The problem was that, when it first went out in 1981, the ratings were deemed to be on the low side. A second series went ahead, but even then, the ratings were not deemed world-shattering. If that had happened today, the show would have been axed quicker than you could shout “Mange Tout!” That's the price you pay for being with a ratings-hungry broadcaster, full of media-savvy trendies with buzzwords and balance sheets.

But luckily, a repeat season was to prove to be Only Fools And Horses' salvation. This time around,
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