New Book: Congratulations, You’ve Just Met The RJF

An extract from a shocking new book exposing the sub-culture of ultraviolence in late 1970’s children’s television.

Rod: In 1979 there were a lot of really useful firms operating out of ITV and “The Rainbow Boys” were one of the best in the business. The problem was, because we were new, we were always on the outside looking in. It was time to make a bit of a noise and show them we could handle ourselves.

Freddy: We decided we were going to take Play School in their home pub, Chatters wine bar in Hampstead. On the face of it, it was a fucking ridiculous thing to do. They were pretty handy and had a big reputation, but that didn’t mean nothing to us. We were ready to make our mark and didn’t care how we did it.

Jane:
We got there early and just kept a low profile. Pretty soon the whole place was filling up. There were quite a few faces in there: Fred Harris, Derek Griffiths, Big Ted. I can’t say it bothered me. All I was thinking was, “You’re going to get it, you numpties!”

Rod:
I think it was Johnny Ball who clocked us. I can remember him saying something like “I can think of a number: the three wankers stood over there” and it all kicked off. Even though they hit us with everything they had, we took it. All I can remember is Freddy screaming, “Hold the line, just hold the fucking line” and we did.

Jane:
I didn’t think they could believe that three of us had taken about forty of them at their place. They just melted away, flicking the V’s at us and looking like a total set of pussies. I saw Hamble with blood pissing from an open head wound. To be honest I was too wound up to care.

Rod:
We walked away from there with our heads held high. The Rainbow Boys would have to take notice now. Rod, Jane and Freddy had well and truly arrived.

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THE BATTLE OF BLUE PETER

Rod: There’s been a whole heap of bullshit spoken about who vandalized the Blue Peter Garden. The truth is that place got torn up in one of the maddest, bloodiest children’s television rucks I can ever remember.

Jane:
Blue Peter were always giving it some about how they were the best in the business. We were happy to let them think that. Our feeling was they’d got sloppy and hadn’t fought anyone decent for about five years. Their shows always went out live, so the plan was to wait until the end of the live broadcast and pile in. The trouble was it didn’t work out like that.

Freddy:
We’d gone over the wall and started heading towards them. It was Simon Groom and Janet Ellis and we could tell we’d taken them by surprise. Rod wades in and bang, bang, bang they both go down like a sack of shit. It was all a bit too easy and we couldn’t work out why the camera crew was holding back. Then we realised, they’d been having some sort of past presenter’s reunion. They all came pouring out of the studios: Noakes, Purves, Singleton; all ready to kick seven shades of shit out of us.

Jane:
As far as we were concerned there was only one thing to do. Stand our ground. Other firms would have run but we just thought, fuck it, this far and no further. It wasn’t easy mind. They were tooled up with bottle tops from a bring and buy sale. Peter Duncan was just wading into us with a bicycle chain shouting, “Take that you cunts!” I honestly didn’t think we’d last much longer.

Rod:
Then we heard it. The best sound in the world; “Up above the streets and houses, Rainbow climbing high!” It was The Rainbow Boys battle cry…the cavalry was coming. Zippy dropped the nut on Biddy Baxter and suddenly things were a bit more even. I swear on my mothers grave if security hadn’t stepped in we’d have murdered the bastards.

Freddy:
The garden was totally fucked. They covered it up and said it was the work of vandals. No it wasn’t, it was the scene of our finest hour.


Congratulations…You’ve Just Met The RJF is published by Hodder & Stoughton and retails at £7.99