Wednesday 20 March 2019

Two Ronnies' Fork Handles script could fetch €45,600

Fork Handles script
Fork Handles script

A rare slice of British comedy history is up for grabs with The Two Ronnies' original Fork Handles script due to go under the hammer.

Written by Ronnie Barker, the single sheet - handwritten in red ink - is expected to fetch up to £40,000 (€45,600) at auction.

The famous sketch employs wordplay to comic effect when Barker's character goes into a hardware store, run by Ronnie Corbett, with a seemingly simple request for "fork handles", and ends up with four candles instead.

Also known as The Hardware Shop or Annie Finkhouse skit, the sketch frequently charts as one of the best-loved comedy scenes.


Since first airing in 1976, it has been immortalised by a pub named The Four Candles in Barker's hometown of Oxford.

At the late comedian's funeral, vergers held four candles rather than two.

The sketch was apparently inspired by a real event.

This script previously sold for £48,500 in 2007 after surfacing on an edition of the BBC's Antiques Roadshow the previous year.

It was authenticated by Corbett who surmised that Barker, who rarely wrote in red ink, may have given it to a charity auction as he was sometimes uncomfortable with public appearances.

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