Dear I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue Mailing List Member,
It seems an opportune moment to communicate after the hiatus caused by the death of our beloved Chairman Humph in April this year.
Firstly, on behalf of the team, I'd like to thank the thousands of you who sent us messages of condolence. There were so many I regret I have still not replied to 900 or so - I promise I will in due course. And belatedly, on Humph's behalf, I'd like to thank the thousands who sent Humph "Get Well" messages when he first went into hospital. I spent several hours printing out as many as I could and took a huge pile of them in for Humph to read in his hospital bed. I'm so pleased he was able to able to appreciate the scale of everyone's affection for him at what must have been a very worrying time.
You will probably have heard the various Radio tributes to Humph since his death. I do hope you caught the ISIHAC team's tribute to the great man on 15th June narrated by Stephen Fry. If you didn't, I'm pleased to say that BBC Audiobooks will be releasing it later this year, together with the show Humph In Wonderland which we recorded last Christmas. I will send further details of these in due course.
And you might also have read Radio 4's announcement that we will be continuing with I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue in 2009. We have all been slightly ambivalent about continuing the show without Humph, but have been greatly encouraged by the huge number of emails you've sent encouraging us to keep going. Despite the rumours, we've made no decisions about possible replacements for Humph, and are unlikely to make any decisions this year at least. Certainly I don't envisage us selecting anyone on a permanent basis for several series.
For anyone suffering withdrawal symptoms in the absence of their biannual dose of 'Clue', there are several programmes and publications either currently available or in the pipeline...
* On BBC iPlayer you can currently catch both the BBC4 tribute to Humph, and a half-hour excerpt from the ISIHAC Tour show we filmed at the Lowry Centre in Salford earlier this year. This is the only complete film of ISIHAC in existence and was the last recording Humph made before he went into hospital just ten days later. We will be releasing the entire show as a DVD in due course, hopefully by Christmas. The links to the iPlayer shows are as follows: For the BBC4 Humph Tribute it's http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b00ddwcy/ and for the half-hour tour show except it's http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b00dmpd2/
* On 10th October our publisher Trevor Dolby at Preface Books is bringing out the complete collection of Humph's introductions to all the places we visited over seventeen years touring the show, written by Iain Pattinson. The book is entitled Lyttelton's Britain and contains a large amount of previously unbroadcast material. As I say in a foreword to the book, I think the combination of Iain Pattinson and Humphrey Lyttelton has been the single most important writer/performer partnership in British Radio since Galton & Simpson started writing for Tony Hancock. It's a wonderful and hilarious collection and I confidently predict it will be a best-seller. You can pre-order a copy of Lyttelton's Britain now, and Trevor is offering this book at a special discounted rate of 35% off the retail price to members of this mailing list - that's less than Amazon. Just go to http://www.chairmanhumph.co.uk/ and click on 'Pre-Order Now', then enter the promotional code 'Lyttelton' before purchasing, and the price will amend to £9.74 plus £2.75 postage, so £12.49 in total.
* Finally, I must tell you that our good friend and Clue regular Andy Hamilton is touring his one man show 'Hat of Doom' around the country over twenty dates from now until early December. You will of course know Andy from his regular appearances on The News Quiz as well as Radio 4's Old Harry's Game. Andy was co-creator and writer of Channel 4's legendary Drop The Dead Donkey and has recently co-created and written the stunningly good BBC1 sitcom Outnumbered, which returns for a second series this Autumn. For the complete list of Andy's tour dates, go to: http://www.varietylives.com/schedule.html
And that's about it for now. I will of course keep you posted of any future developments.
With best wishes
Producer, I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue