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Last Updated: Tuesday, 5 October, 2004, 17:15 GMT 18:15 UK
Holiday camp workers relive film
On the Buses
On the Buses was a popular comedy in the 70s
Veteran staff at a north Wales holiday camp are reliving the time a film was made there.

Darrio Touhladjien and Kevin Shepherd were both working in Pontin's at Prestatyn when the 1973 film 'Holiday on the Buses' was shot there.

More than 30 years later a commemorative plaque is being unveiled to remind people that the film was made in the holiday centre.

Mr Touhladjien and Mr Shepherd will be among the guests present.

Excitement

The ceremony later this month has been organised by The Wales Screen Commission.

The organisation is erecting plaques across north Wales to show the role the region played in the British film industry.

The film was the third in a series spawned from the comedy sitcom, On the Buses.

The plot revolved around the antics of the regulars of On The Buses who end up at Pontin's after being sacked for crashing three buses.

The series made stars of actors Reg Varney and Bob Grant who played Stan the bus driver and his conductor Jack.

The whole town was buzzing...people were looking out for the stars everywhere
Kevin Shepherd
When the film was shot in north Wales, Mr Touhladjien, originally from Bulgaria was working as the reception manager by day and a pianist by night.

"When I started with this company in 1973, they were in the middle of filming and the camp was closed, there were scenes being shot every day," he recalled.

"Actors, extras and crew members were coming in and out to shoot scenes in the centre, outside and in the town.

"The gatehouse featured prominently because of the bus coming in and out because I was managing the reception I had contact with all the comings and goings," he added.

Darrio Touhladjien
Darrio Touhladjien has fond memories of the film

In 1973, fellow worker Kevin Shepherd was a 14-year-old luggage boy.

"When we heard that the film was going to be shot here the whole town was buzzing with excitement, people were looking out for the stars everywhere," the 44-year-old said.

"There are places you can recognise in the film, the scene where the sidecar came off was shot on the Rhuddlan bridge and the scene where the bus is in the water is just opposite the Grand Hotel," he added.

Mr Shepherd, now the site's maintenance manager, said some of his friends believe he starred in the film but he is not so sure.

"There is a scene where you see the luggage porter carrying the cases and they all say it's me, I wouldn't like to say that it is or not," he said.

The commemorative plaque, which forms part of the North Wales Film and Television Trail, will be unveiled at Pontin's on 22 October.

Richard Coombs from the Wales Screen Commission said the trail is an "eclectic mix of productions to suit all tastes".

"On the Buses and the big screen spin-offs are enjoying something of a revival thanks to the advent of digital television with re-runs attracting old and new fans alike," he said.

"It was something that appealed to a wide audience, it was good old fashioned 'clean smut'.

"It was near the knuckle but without going to far," he added.




SEE ALSO:
Film fans keen to spot Demi
18 Sep 04  |  North West Wales
Burt returns to open film trail
28 May 04  |  North West Wales
Film star drawn back to Wales
28 Jan 03  |  Wales


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