By WGGB Comedy Chair Nathaniel Tapley
Raymond Allen, the creator of Some Mothers Do ‘Ave Em and long-standing member of the WGGB, passed away on 2 October 2022.
Raymond was working as a cinema cleaner on the Isle of Wight when, at 31, he submitted his script for Have a Break, Take a Husband to the BBC, where it would become one of the most beloved sitcoms of the 1970s. As he conceived it, the sitcom focused on Betty Spencer with her idiot husband Frank as some light relief. However, Raymond said, “When I started writing it, I found I had more sympathy with Frank and he started saying more and more and Betty merged into the background.” The show earned, at its height, 25 million viewers for an episode.
Raymond also wrote sketches for Frankie Howerd, Little And Large, Max Wall and Jimmy Cricket. His play One of Our Howls Is Missing was a success in 1979. Some Mothers returned to television screens in 2016 in a newly written Sport Relief segment. The sitcom sold to more than 60 countries, and was voted Britain’s 22nd-best sitcom in 2004.
Raymond married in 2017, and lived in Ryde on the Isle of Wight until his death last month.