Chuckle Brothers

Chuckle Brothers
The Chuckle Brothers

The Chuckle Brothers: Paul (left) and Barry (right)
Born Barry Elliott
24 December 1944 (1944-12-24) (age 66)
Rotherham, South Yorkshire, England
Paul Elliott
18 October 1947 (1947-10-18) (age 64)
Rotherham, South Yorkshire, England
Medium Television, stage
Nationality British
Years active 1974–present
Notable works and roles ChuckleVision (1987–present)
Website Official site

Barry Elliott (born 24 December 1944) and Paul Elliott (born 18 October 1947), better known as the Chuckle Brothers, are British comedians. They are best known for their work on their BBC show ChuckleVision, which celebrated its 21st anniversary in March 2010 with a tour called An Audience with the Chuckle Brothers, which started in January 2010 and ended in May 2010.[1] The comedy of the Chuckle Brothers usually derives from slapstick and other visual gags, and their catchphrases include "To me, to you" and "Oh dear, oh dear".


Early lives

The brothers were born in Rotherham to Amy and James Patton Elliott in 1944 and 1947. Their father was a well-known Gang Show performer whose stage name was Gene Patton; he worked with the 18-year-old Peter Sellers in 1943 in 'The No. 10 Gang' and gave performances in London, Orkney, Iceland and the Hebrides, the Far East, India and Burma. They have elder brothers called Jimmy and Brian, who are known professionally as The Patton Brothers and who featured in The Black and White Minstrel Show.[2]


The Chuckle Brothers won the television talent shows Opportunity Knocks in 1967 and New Faces in 1974.[3] Despite this they did not find real success until the advent of their own television show for the BBC in 1985, Chucklehounds. These were short shows aimed at pre-school children that had no dialogue, in which they dressed in giant dog costumes. They quickly moved on to their most famous show, ChuckleVision, in 1987. In 1998, ChuckleVision was nominated for a Children’s BAFTA Award in the category Best Children's Television Series. Jimmy, and Brian Patton, the real life brothers of the pair, also make regular appearances on the show. In 2007, recording began on the 20th series. In the late 1970s and early 1980s the four brothers appeared as a quartet on TV. They are remembered for their performance in 1982 on 3-2-1.[citation needed]

They also presented a game show called To Me, To You!, named after their catchphrase. The basic format involved two teams, competing each round for prizes on a trolley (made to resemble a bamboo structure to fit in with the "treasure island" theme of the show). By rolling a die the teams had to get the trolley to their end of the board. The "squares" leading up to their end of the board often represented challenges. The rounds ended when this was achieved and new prizes were put on the trolley, which was reset to the centre. The show lasted for three series before the pair took a break from entertainment citing "exhaustion" as the main reason.[citation needed]

On 12 May 2007 they appeared on The Weakest Link in a "couples" special, which was repeated from December 2006.[citation needed] They came second to Chappers and Dave of BBC Radio One.[citation needed]

On 24 April 2009 they appeared on The Paul O'Grady Show, performing their plate-catching act.[citation needed]

They appeared on the Channel 4 show Come Dine With Me on 10 February 2010, as guests of a Rotherham resident's dinner party.[citation needed]

The brothers appeared in the TV series Celebrity Coach Trip during November 2010 and won the show, lasting the whole trip.[4]

ChuckleVision is now the UKs longest running current "sitcom", since Last of the Summer Wine was cancelled in 2010.[citation needed]

On 07 November 2011 the pair starred in a set of TV commercials for UK based van insurance comparison website, Van Compare.[5]


As well as regular television appearances, Paul and Barry appear on stage throughout the year all over the UK. Past shows have included - The Adventures of the Chuckle Brothers, The Chuckle Brothers in – Trouble at Sea, Raiders of the Lost Bark, Barry Potty and his Smarter Brother Paul in the Chamber of Horrors, Star Doors, Pirates of the River Rother, Doctor What & the Return of the Garlics, Spooky Goings On and Spooky Goings On 2. Live recordings of Pirates of the River Rother and Spooky Goings On 2 were released in 2007, the latter under the title The Chuckle Brothers – Spooky Goings On Live!..[6]

In November — December 2007, they toured their Pantomime Aladdin to many theatres up and down the UK.[7] Barry starred as Aladdin and Paul as his brother Wishie Washee, as they did battle against the evil Abanazer. This starred the illusionists Safire, Simon Harvey as Abanazar, Luke Jasztal as Widow Twankey, Charlotte Sullivan as So Shi and Amanda Poyner as the Princess. This pantomime also featured a group of dancers known as The Chucklettes. The choreography for the show was created by the Chuckle Brothers' niece , Debbie Baggott who runs her own dance school — Debonair Dance Academy[8] and all of the Chucklettes are members.

Their 2008 tour, "Indiana Chuckles and The Kingdom of the Mythical Sulk" was set in ancient Egypt, based on the Indiana Jones movies. The illusionists Safire joined them once again, making it their sixth outing with the Chuckles. They performed two new illusions along with a new black art act up their sleeves, to fit in with the Egyptian theme. The Patton Brothers also toured with them once again. Also, it was announced under their biography section of their website that this will also be released as a DVD, as with Pirates of the River Rother & Spooky Goings On 2, with a release date set at 22 September 2008.[9] In May 2008 they appeared in the BBC documentary series Comedy Map of Britain. At Christmas 2008 the Chuckle Brothers appeared in Aladdin at the Cliffs Pavilion in Southend.

A brand-new show named Chuckle Trek — The Lost Generation was staged around the country in 2009. It was set in space and based on the Star Trek movies and television series, and also a little snippet of Doctor Who.[citation needed]

For Christmas 2009, the Chuckle Brothers toured the UK with a pantomime called A Christmas Chuckle.

In 2010 the brothers toured the UK with a special 21st anniversary show, "An Audience With The Chuckle Brothers", a mix of comedy sketches and a question session from the audience. The brothers are set to tour once again in November and December 2010 with the Christmas show "The Twelve Days Of Christmas".

In 2011 the brothers toured in the UK with a new show called Barry Potter and his Full Blood Brother Paul in The Ghostly Shadows. The Patton Brothers and Safire joined them again. In Wolverhampton they stayed for two days rather than the usual single day in each venue.

Chuckle Brothers Live

  • 1974: Chuckle Brothers: Live
  • 1983: The Freddie Starr Live Showcase
  • 1995: To You, To Me
  • 1996: Live and in Trouble
  • 1997: The Chuckle Brothers Summer Roadshow
  • 1998: The Adventures of the Chuckle Brothers
  • 1999: Trouble At Sea (first tour, possibly second in 2012)
  • 2000: The New Adventures of the Chuckle Brothers
  • 2001: Spooky Goings On
  • 2002: Raiders of the Lost Bark
  • 2003: Star Doors — The Chuckles Strike Back
  • 2004: Barry Potty and his Smarter Brother Paul in The Chamber of Horrors
  • 2005: Pirates of the River Rother
  • 2006: Doctor What and The Return of the Garlics
  • 2007: Spooky Goings On 2
  • 2008: Indiana Chuckles and The Kingdom of the Mythical Sulk
  • 2008: Aladdin (Xmas panto)
  • 2009: Chuckle Trek  — The Lost Generation
  • 2009: A Christmas Chuckle (Late 2009 Christmas special performances)
  • 2010: An Audience With...The Chuckle Brothers
  • 2010: The Twelve Days Of Christmas (Late 2010 Christmas special performances)
  • 2011: Barry Potty And His Full Blood Brother Paul in The Ghostly Shadows
  • 2011: Cinderella (late 2011 Christmas special) (Hull only)
  • 2012: Pirates Of River Rother 2 in stranger tights [1]
  • 2012: Trouble At Sea (second tour)
  • 2012-2013: Barry Potty And His Scar Loved Brother Paul in The Cup of Waters (unconfirmed)
  • 2013?: Batman and Robin (unconfirmed)

The 2005 tour, Pirates of The River Rother, the 2007 tour, Spooky Goings On 2 and the 2008 tour, Indiana Chuckles and the Kingdom of the Mythical Sulk, have all been released on DVD.

A short, edited version of the 1996 tour was also released under the name of "The Chuckle Brothers In Trouble". The DVD features a rehearsal performance of the show, with no audience present. The original video can be seen on YouTube.

The 2010 tour "An Audience With...The Chuckle Brothers", took the format of a variety show with classic sketches, audience questions, musical performances, puppetry, film clips, magic, and an audience participation version of the 'to me, to you' game show, celebrating 21 years of Chucklevision. The only place they did not visit was the Bristol Hippodrome. The Late 2011 Christmas Panto Cinderella will only be shown in Hull.

The 1999 Tour Trouble At Sea will be having another tour in 2012, this could be the same performance or a different story. This has not been confirmed as of yet.

The 2005 Tour Pirates of River Rother will also be having another tour in 2012, under the name Pirates of River Rother 2 in stranger tights. Tour dates can be seen on the official website.

3D Film

A 3D spoof-horror film is in production, due to be released in 2012.[10]


Although TVGoHome has described the Chuckles as "Britain's most wizened and suspect comedy duo",[11] recognition has come to the brothers. On 31 January 2007 Rotherham United chairman Denis Coleman announced that the brothers had both been made honorary presidents of the football club.[12]

In November 2007, Loaded magazine launched a campaign for the brothers to be knighted, by calling for people to write to The Queen. This was picked up by a group on social networking website Facebook.

In 2008, they were honoured with the Special Award at the Children's BAFTA Awards.[13]

Personal life

In April 2007, while on holiday on the Greek island of Kefalonia, Paul broke his nose and received cuts and bruises when he lost control of his motorbike after suddenly braking to avoid a shepherd and his flock of goats. Tourists who stopped at the accident, instead of helping him out, shouted out the Chuckle Brothers' catchphrase: "To me, to you."[14]

The brothers have a biography due to be published, written by friend and author Stuart Clarkson (younger brother of Motoring journalist and Top Gear presenter Jeremy Clarkson), though no date has yet been confirmed for its release.[citation needed]

The brothers also support Rotherham United football club.[15]

Death hoax

An urban legend purporting Barry Chuckle's death from a heart attack has been in circulation since at least 2008. In 2010, the Chuckle Brothers issued a statement on their web site confirming that the story was "complete and utter rubbish".[16] The BBC reported that the death hoaxes had upset young viewers, and had shocked Barry Elliott when they resurfaced.[17] The hoax was said to have spread via Facebook in 2008, but resurfaced in 2010 via Twitter.[17]


  1. ^ Briggs, Caroline (26 September 2007). "Brothers mark 20 years of chuckles". BBC News. Retrieved 26 October 2007. 
  2. ^ Harman, Len (7 December 1981). "A Showbiz Dynasty". The Stage. Retrieved 12 February 2009. 
  3. ^ "Preview: The Chuckle Brothers at the Apollo, Oxford – April 19". The Oxford Times. 18 April 2001. Retrieved 18 April 2011. 
  4. ^ Alex Fletcher (16 September 2010). "Celebrity 'Coach Trip' lineup revealed". Digital Spy. 
  5. ^ "Chuckle Brothers Help Make Cheap Van Insurance a Wheeze!". Van Compare. Retrieved 7 November 2011. 
  6. ^ "The Chuck Brothers Spooky Goings On Live" (Press release). Liberation Entertainment. Retrieved 28 October 2007. 
  7. ^ REVIEW:
  8. ^ Debonair Dance Academy official website
  9. ^ "Spring Tour". The Chuckle Brothers Official UK Website. Archived from the original on 12 November 2007. Retrieved 26 October 2007. 
  10. ^
  11. ^ TV Go Home, Charlie Brooker, 2001 (ISBN 1-84115-675-2)
  12. ^ "Millers Make Two Big Signings". News. The Chuckle Brothers Official UK Website. 7 February 2007. Archived from the original on 23 August 2007. Retrieved 4 September 2007. 
  13. ^ "Bafta honour for Chuckle Brothers". BBC News. 1 December 2008. Retrieved 26 January 2010. 
  14. ^ "Chuckle brother hurt in crash". BBC, CBBC Newsround. 27 April 2007. Retrieved 31 March 2010. 
  15. ^ "Famous Fans: The Chuckle Brothers". The Football League. 27 November 2008. Retrieved 18 April 2011. 
  16. ^ "News On Barry". The Chuckle Brothers. 2010. Retrieved 14 April 2010. [dead link]
  17. ^ a b "Barry Chuckle's shock over death rumours". BBC News. 8 June 2010. Retrieved 8 June 2010. 

External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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