Laurel and Hardy
and the
Sons of the Desert
are at the heart of
Bowler Dessert Online





New tent for Carlisle

I live in Carlisle, Cumbria and want to start my own tent here. First I am going to set up a gathering. I would also like to know of any websites or other contacts that could help me take it off in Carlisle. Any advice will be appreciated.

George Cullen

Another Fine Fest

The Brats Tent took a minibus to Another Fine Fest in Ulverston on 18th June - to celebrate Stan's birthday and to support the Fest.

We had a great time and it was great to meet up with Graeme Green and the Sailors Beware Tent in the Stan Laurel pub to start off proceedings

Graeme Green and John Burton

Mark Greenhow was once again heavily involved in organising the event which was a tremendous success.

There were numerous street entertainers, many of whom sported bowler hats or fezzes, and also lots of street artists who produced wonderful L&H influenced artwork in front of our eyes!


Prior to our arrival there was a successful world record attempt to stage the largest custard pie fight ever.

Unlike on carnival day, many shop fronts sported L&H associated displays, so I would urge Sons to support this event too in future years.

There were also a couple of co-incidental L&H references. Firstly we came across a flea circus, but there was no sign of Ethel the Chimp or the Talking Cuckoo and then a shop advertising Fresh Fish, caught in the Ocean on their own boat (or Caught in the ocean this mo-or-or-or-or-orning!)

A fabulous day - congratulations to Mark and the team for A Perfect Day.

John Burton

There are many more photos on the Brats Facebook Page.


See also "Pie fight breaks world record at Ulverston festival" on the BBC News website 186 people took part, creating a new world record.

Nancy Wardell RIP

I had the pleasure of meeting Nancy a number of times, the last being when she honoured the Hog Wild Tent to unveil the statue of Stan on the site of his father's theatre in Bishop Auckland back in 2008.

She will be a great loss and sadly missed by the Sons

 Tony Hillman

Dave Tomlinson forwarded this obituary:


Nancy Wardell : Obituary

Published in the Wakefield Express on 30th June 2016 (Distributed in Castleford, West Yorkshire)

WARDELL Nancy Elizabeth On Thursday, June 23 rd, formerly of Ennerdale Crescent, aged 91 years.

Funeral service will be held at Batley Central Methodist Church on Friday, 8th July at 1.00pm followed by the committal service at Dewsbury Moor Crematorium at 2.00pm.

No flowers by request please.

Donations in lieu for Cancer Research UK may be made on leaving the services.


See also Bowler Dessert Online's page about Nancy.

Books update

Coming soon, "Stanthology" The Cinematic Revival of Silent Clowns in the Age of Television. A 564 page book, measuring 18.91 x 24.58 cm. It's the biggest book we've written, over 34500 words and containing over 850 images! It is a chronological "scrapbook" of facts, trivia, video/DVD availability, stills/photos, lobby cards, posters and promotional material pertaining to the Robert Youngson compilations, plus Crazy World of and Best of Laurel & Hardy. It also includes info on Jay Ward, Raymond Rohauer, and all of the narrators involved in the ten productions made between 1957 and 1974. The foreword has been written by Rob Lewis. RRP will be £17.99.

A companion book, measuring the same size, at 96 pages, will also be available. Titled "The Colourful World of Robert Youngson", this features the best 100 plus posters from Stanthology in full colour. This will retail at £19.99, due to the cost involved in colour printing, and will be limited to 100 copies only!

A small amount of advance copies will be available for Sons attending the convention. Please message if you would like one, and we can arrange to meet up.

We will be selling and signing the books later in the year at The Laurel & HarDay in Wigan, and again at the Helpmates weekend in Chatham in October.

For everyone else in the world, they will be available to buy online from the printers or from us (signed) by prior arrangement.

We are once again using as the printers, and books can be ordered from here directly.

Ant and Jo MItchell-Waite

Statue in North Shields

I can report that the statue in North Shields of Stan is still in need of repair - it's a shame as I think the chances of the council paying to have it restored is out of the question, given all the cuts that are taking place around the country. In December's Perry Winkle there will be an article about my trip there.


Ross's radio tribute

If anyone missed our epic "star studded" tribute to Laurel and Hardy, which aired on my radio show The Ross Owen Show on Stan's birthday, they can listen/download it in segments here!laurelhardytribute/lkijz.

Ross Owen

Dave's latest

Dave de Kort, distinguished member of the Call of the Cuckoos Tent of Glasgow, has regular bookings for his musical talents, and he has released a CD of some great songs, ranging from Try a Little Kindness to Walk Tall and from A Little Bitty Tear to Forty Shades of Green. It is excellent!

Contact Dave at

Book launch

Here's a bit of dialogue that I just thought of, about the "launching" of Randy Skretvedt's book:

Stan: "Say, Ollie, I heard that Randy had a book-launching."
Ollie: "That's right, he did."
Stan: "I didn't know that they could launch a book. Did NASA send it into orbit?"
Ollie: "No, they didn't launch it into space! 'Launching' is an old-fashioned term!"
Stan: "Oh, does that mean that they put the book in the water? I don't think it will float very well."
Ollie (looking at the camera): "Float very well... Hhmmmmmmm!"

Eric Schultz

Documentary on Bill Cubin

Gary Winstanley has made a documentary about Bill Cubin, which will be officially screened at the 20th International Convention of the Sons of the Desert Convention in Cumbria this month. It will be shown in the Laurel and Hardy Museum in Ulverston.

You can see a trailer at

Leave 'em burning

The Bonnie Scotland Tent had a stall at the Sma' Shot Day in Paisley on 2nd July. The annual event commemorates the struggle between the town's weavers and employers and culminates in the "Burning of the Cork".

Other tent events planned this summer by Grand Sheik Janice Hawton are a day out in Glasgow on 23rd July and a trip to Tighnabruaich on the paddle steamer the Waverley on 13th August.

...and finally