The iconic shop sign used during the filming of the Open All Hours Christmas special is to stay in Doncaster.
Three days of filming came to an end yesterday and crews have spent much of today dismantling the mock facade of Arkwright’s corner store in Lister Avenue, Balby ahead of interior shooting in Salford which gets underway in December.
But the sign has been donated to Doncaster Tourist Information Centre at the Blue Building in High Street - and members of the public can now take a look at the sign before it heads off for a permanent home in Doncaster Museum.
Tourism chief Colin Joy was delighted at the acquistion and said: “We had asked in advance of filming whether we would be able to keep the sign once they had finished with it.
“They have said we are welcome to use it and display - on the provision that the BBC can have it back if a decision is taken to commission a new series.”
Hundreds of locals flocked to Balby to catch a glimpse of acting legend Sir David Jason, who has reprised his role as Granville for the sitcom classic with Lynda Baron, Stephanie Cole, Johnny Vegas and Mark Williams also involved in scenes at the shop, which is now being returned to its original use as the Beautique hairdressing salon.
Added Mr Joy: “Everyone I have spoken to seems keen for there to be more Open All Hours so hopefully, there will be more publicity for Doncaster in the future.”
The crew have also donated a huge advertising board which was attached to the side of the shop and tourism bosses are hopeful of securing more memorabilia from the much loved show once studio shooting has been completed.
He added: “There has been so much interest in the town and everyone has said how welcome they have been made by the people of Doncaster. The town is going to be shown off to the nation at Christmas and that’s incredible that so many people will be watching Doncaster this Christmas.”
During the filming, Doncaster Market, Doncaster Brewery, the Doncaster Free Press and Brittain’s Vodka all supplied products to be used as props - and bosses are hopeful the items will all make into the final cut of the programme which is expected to be the flagship of the BBC’s festive schedules.
He also revealed that a staggering 26,000 people applied for tickets to watch the studio recording sessions - but only 270 tickets were made available.
He added: “We are pretty sure we are onto a winner with the show and putting Doncaster in the national spotlight.”