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




Daphne Barker RIP

George Bartlett-Wall relayed us some sad news from her One Good Turn Tent of Huddersfield...

I'm sure you remember Dave Barker (our ex-Grand Sheik) and his wife, Daphne Thorp. Sadly Daphne died on 9th April. She had been poorly for a while and passed away quietly at home.

She was Grand Vizier alongside Dave from when the tent was set up in 1995 till we took it on in 2015. We still have the banner she made.

Sorry to be the bearer of sad news.

Mark and George with Daphne's banner

I met Daphne a few times and I always remember her as a gentle sort of lady. I will miss hearing from her again.

Willie McIntyre

Hippodrome Silent Film Festival: Laurel and Hardy Triple Bill

 28th April, 2.30pm

With live accompaniment from Jane Gardner (piano) and Hazel Morrison (percussion).

Hippodrome, 10 Hope Street, Bo'ness, EH51 0AA.

 Programme notes say:
 We begin with 'Flying Elephants' in which the bachelor Boys are transplanted to prehistoric times and their bowler hats are substituted for Hollywood-issue caveman outfits. Next up is their final silent 'Unaccustomed as We Are' (remade as their first talkie). Ollie brings Stan home for dinner, much to the disgust of Mrs. Hardy who storms out leaving the coast clear for the pair to try their charms on beautiful neighbour Mrs. Kennedy (Thelma Todd). Finally, we are delighted to present one of Laurel and Hardy's best-loved shorts: 'Big Business' which sees the duo gain-lessly occupied as door-to-door Christmas tree salesmen falling foul of short-tempered James Finlayson (Larbert-born local celebrity) with predictably but oh-so-satisfyingly destructive results.

Hollywood Victory Caravan

I am trying to pass around the announcement of my Kickstarter campaign. I am hoping to bring the color 16mm footage to DVD, along with a new documentary on the Hollywood Victory Caravan. One of the short subjects that will be included is a 1953 Hal Roach television comedy that shows a part of the Hal Roach Studios. If I hit the target goal the DVD can be professionally pressed in a quality presentation as opposed to a DVD-R type release.

I know there are quite a few Sons who have wanted to see this. A piece of Laurel and Hardy's performance on stage is a part of the preview video.

Irv Hyatt

Grüß Gott!

With only a few days to go to the Sondayz weekend we are happy to announce that the Sons entertainment night is looking good. Besides the wonderful act of magician Raphel 7 Sons have announced to be part of the Sons entertainment evening.

If you were still thinking of coming over for the Sondayz just contact us at: For a full overview of the programme go to our website at:

If you are going to the UK convention, we'll love to meet you there.

René, Graham, Hans

On the telly

Radio Times

Saps at Sea promotion

Here is an interesting photo that I happened to come across on the internet, so I thought I'd pass it along. It's from the Etsy website. Someone was selling a copy or copies of the photo, and it has since sold out.


Also James Finlayson in The Roaring Twenties.

Eric Schultz

Ken Dodd on Celebrity Mastermind

How many of Ken Dodd's questions would you have got right? 

Del Kempster

Return of a Son

I recently had the pleasure of accommodating a friend from our past, Dave Fullbrook, who now lives in Port Elizabeth, South Africa with his family. They were back in the UK over Easter for a family wedding. We were both keen to meet up again. We had a few drinks and plenty of laughs in the Stalybridge Station Buffet Bar, then on to a favourite curry house, the Plaza, near my place. We were joined by Paul Brodie, [my wife] Janet and a former school mate of mine, Andrew Fenna, who knew Dave from years ago. Dave said this visit was just like old times. He wanted to pass on his very best wishes to all those who might remember him from previous conventions and events. And said he would be thinking of us all when we are in Norwich in a few weeks' time.

 Dave Williamson


Janet, Paul, Dave F, Andrew, Dave W

Panopticon's first L&H Quiz Night

Peter Crilly is a volunteer at the Panopticon and is an enormous help with Call of the Cuckoos Tent meetings. Peter had the bright idea of staging a Laurel and Hardy Quiz at the Panopticon and this he staged on 14th April. Valuable prizes, including fezzes, were won by the winning team, called Pardon Us.


The winners: Scott Jackson, Willie Black and Christine Black



Birthday Deuces

On Friday the Flying Deuces of Northern New Jersey, Oasis #8, will be celebrating our 50th anniversary as a tent at our annual banquet. I've been fortunate enough to have spent the last 30 of those 50 years as a member.