Bob’s Full House – New Book From Kaleidoscope

THE MANY TV and radio treasures saved from oblivion thanks to the foresight of a much-missed star are set to be revealed in a new book from Kaleidoscope Publishing.

Bob Monkhouse, the prolific comic, writer and performer was famous worldwide for his sharp one-liners, topical gags and charming smile. He died of prostate cancer in 2003, aged 75, leaving behind a mystery — did he own a mythical collection of films that were the sole surviving copies in the world?

Bob's Full House, published by Kaleidoscope.

Bob's Full House - Published by Kaleidoscope.

Indeed a vast collection of film reels, videos, scripts, photographs and audio tapes WERE amassed by the performer during his lifetime, and after the death of his widow were handed over to Kaleidoscope in 2008 for future generations to enjoy.

Until the early 1980s, both the BBC and ITV regularly wiped programmes after broadcast, or simply never recorded them in the first place. Thanks to his foresight, many hours of vintage comedy material featuring Bob, his writing partner Denis Goodwin, and stars such as Tony Hancock, Peter Sellers, Tommy Cooper, Frankie Howerd, Arthur Askey, Benny Hill and June Whitfield, can now be enjoyed again.

Bob’s Full House contains between its 408 pages details of the material found within the Bob Monkhouse Collection. It is illustrated with many stills and script extracts from Bob’s work which no longer survives in broadcast form.

Any enthusiast of television will enjoy this informative and well-researched guide to the golden years of radio, film and television light entertainment.

  • Introduction by Bob Monkhouse’s daughter, Abigail.
  • Bob on the Box – as complete a listing as we can manage cataloguing Bob’s entire TV career with the items in Bob’s video collection marked and those previously thought missing highlighted
  • We Are The Masters Now – other television programmes found in the Monkhouse archive which were previously thought lost – until now.
  • Continuity Corner – details of the more interesting continuity and presentation found on Bob’s videotape recordings.
  • Wired for Sound – radio programmes and other audio gems recorded and saved by Denis Goodwin and Bob Monkhouse.
  • Monkhouse Movies – an inventory of the film prints found in Bob’s collection.
  • Tech Ops – some of the more interesting items of audio-visual equipment we found.
  • More than 150 pages of photographs, images of memorabilia and script extracts.

First to be released is a special edition hardback book, limited to 100 copies, each of which comes with a signed photograph of Bob Monkhouse and, rather bizarrely, a book-plate which says, ‘This book belongs to Bob Monkhouse’.

At least £5 from each sale will be given to the Prostate Cancer Research Foundation.

Anyone who has a ticket for Kaleidoscope’s Bob’s Full House event (October 24th) may pre-order the accompanying book at the reduced price of £27.99 for collection on the day.

Assuming it doesn’t sell out via pre-orders alone, it will be available for sale at the event at the same price.  Please note Kaleidoscope will only be able to accept cash or cheques on the day; they can only take card payments in advance via PayPal. Any PayPal pre-orders intended for collection at the event must be made no later than Thursday, October 22nd. For anyone ordering for delivery by post, no books will be despatched until after the Bob’s Full House event.

To pre-order a copy of the book visit Kaleidoscope Publishing.

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