Tv director's home damaged in blaze

A TOP television director was beginning a major clear-up operation last night after fire ravaged part of his Suffolk cottage.Ray Butt, who helped devise the cult BBC comedy show Only Fools and Horses, was not at home when flames took hold in a first floor bedroom.

A TOP television director was beginning a major clear-up operation last night after fire ravaged part of his Suffolk cottage.

Ray Butt, who helped devise the cult BBC comedy show Only Fools and Horses, was not at home when flames took hold in a first floor bedroom.

The fire spread to the roof of the property, in Main Road, Hemingstone, but its cause is still unknown.

Last night, Mr Butt said the damage caused by the blaze had been minimal.


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“It was just in one room and there wasn't much in there,” he said. “It's not too bad. I'm waiting for the insurance man to come round.”

Neighbours attempted to enter the property after spotting flames coming out of a rear window, at about 2pm on Sunday. A small part of the roof was destroyed in the blaze, with other parts of the house heavily smoke logged.

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Four fire crews, from Needham Market, Ipswich, Debenham and Felixstowe, spent more than an hour bringing the incident under control. A tent was put up to shelter some of Mr Butt's belongings salvaged by the firefighters.

Mr Butt has worked on a string of well-known television shows during his distinguished career.

Starting in 1969 with the The Liver Birds, he also directed other BBC shows including Are You Being Served?, in 1972, Last Of The Summer Wine, in 1973, It Ain't Half Hot Mum, in 1974, Citizen Smith, in 1977, Just Good Friends, in 1983, and Hilary, in 1984.

But he is perhaps most famous for his role in the production of Only Fools and Horses, parts of which were filmed in Ipswich.

Some of the scenes set in the Nag's Head pub, Del Boy and Rodney's favourite drinking haunt, were filmed in a pub in the town, as were a number of market scenes.

This included the Frog's Legacy episode, which aired in December 1987, but was filmed the previous month, in the Rectory Road and Seymour Street areas of the town.

As well as Ipswich, the Nag's Head was also filmed at pubs in Brighton, Bristol, Hull, London and Salisbury.

The street markets used in various episodes were also located in Bristol, Hull, and Salisbury

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