By 1976 it was clear that Michael Bates
was ill. The cancer which was to eventually kill him meant the strenuous walking through the hills became impossible. He was written out of the series and his noticeable gap was filled by Brian Wilde
, who had already become known as Mr. Barrowclough in Porridge
(1974). Michael Bates did continue to appear in his other success, It Ain't Half Hot Mum
(1974), but died soon after. See more
[Compo has just died
Are we going to see him?
I can see him, fooling about, hands in his pockets, dragging his wellies.
Are we going to see him before they close the lid.
Oh, I'm not so sure about that.
You'll be sorry. Besides, how often do you get to see something for nothing these days?