UK Comedy Star Backs Foster Care in Montenegro

interview
07 Oct 15
UK Comedy Star Backs Foster Care in Montenegro

Nicholas Lyndhurst, of ‘Only Fools and Horses’ fame, has been using his pulling power in Montenegro to promote foster parenting.

Dusica Tomovic
BIRN
Podgorica

Nicholas Lyndhurst is a promoter of UNICEF’s foster care campaign | Photo: Dusko Miljanic.

The well-known British comedy actor Nicholas Lyndhurst came to Montenegro to promote foster care in recent says, apparently unaware that the country is home to hordes of fans of his long-ago sit-com Only Fools and Horses.

As a promoter of UNICEF’s campaign for the development of foster care and the closure of institutions for children without parental care, a Lyndhurst visited Montenegro to encourage more people to become foster parents.

A generation of young people in Montenegro has grown up on Only Fools and Horses, in which Lyndhurst starred as Rodney Trotter, however.

Speaking to BIRN, Lyndhurst said that while being an actor is perceived as glamorous and wonderful, and of course it is, being a parent was the best thing he had ever done.

“Being a parent is fantastic. Children need to grow up in a family. Happiness and joy, the feeling of belonging are essential for their normal growth and development,” he said.

Only Fools and Horses, a British sitcom originally broadcast on BBC 1 in the UK from 1981 to 2003, remains a cult series, not only in Montenegro, but also in Croatia, Bosnia and Serbia.

Only Fools and Horses remains a cult series in Montenegro.

Several Montenegrin appreciation fan web pages are devoted to Mucke, the local name for Only Fools and Horses, which translates as “suspicious job”, or “shady job”

Some believe that the life of Rodney and his brother Del Boy, played by David Jason, resonates with people in the Balkans in general, and did so especially in the Nineties, when the ex-Yugoslav countries felt isolated, desperate and downtrodden.

The hapless duo of Rodney and Del Boy were always coming up with new, crazy idea to make money. Their madcap schemes – which never got anywhere – appealed to people in the Balkans living in hard times.

Lyndhurst said that when he first came to Montenegro in 2013, he had had no idea that Only Fools and Horses was so popular.

“And I said that if there was anything I could do to help in anyway at all, just get one child out of an institution because of Only Fools and Horses, I had to come,” he recalled.
“My first visit was really a fact-finding tour. People in Montenegro are the friendliest people I have ever met,” he added.


Photo: Dusko Miljanic.

During last week’s three-day visit to the capital, Podgorica, and to several towns in the north, Montenegrins queued to be photographed with their TV hero, Trotter.

Lyndhurst was also the star attraction in Podgorica’s own Nag’s Head, named after the pub in the famous BBC series.

People in Podgorica were surprised to see how down to earth the actor was, ready to chat with anyone.

He is promoting foster care as a volunteer, free of charge, and exclusively in Montenegro.

“When I first came in 2013 I got out of the car to go to a press conference…and as I walking down the road, I still cannot believe it, people outside the restaurants and bars stood up and they all started to applaud. I felt like the Queen,” he recalled.

“I then realised how popular Rodney was,” the actor said.

But, Lyndhurst said he still did not quite understand why people liked the serials so much in Montenegro. “Most likely it’s because you have a very good sense of humour,” he joked.

Source: Balkan Insight (Montenegro)