School for Scoundrels, 1960

Director

Robert Hamer

Cast



visit Hertfordshire

Hertford East: rail from London Liverpool Street

Corus Hotel, Edgwarebury Lane, off Barnett Lane, Elstree (tel: 0870.609.6151)

Trivia

School For Scoundrels was the last film from the brilliant director Robert Hamer, best known for the Ealing classic Kind Hearts and Coronets.

School For Scoundrels  location: Thurlby Croft, Mulberry Close, Hendon, London NW4

School For Scoundrels location: Henry Palfrey’s apartment block: Thurlby Croft, Mulberry Close, Hendon, London NW4

Forget the recent remake, this is the real thing – classic comedy from a time when cast of British stalwarts could make it all look so easy. Mild-mannered loser Henry Palfrey (Ian Carmichael) takes lessons in one-upmanship from the cynical Mr Potter (Alastair Sim) in this film adaptation of Stephen Potter’s books, from the director of Kind Hearts and Coronets.

School For Scoundrels  location: Hertford East Station, Hertfordshire

School For Scoundrels location: ‘Yeovil Station’, supposedly in the West Country: Hertford East Station, Hertfordshire

The railway station at which Palfrey alights on his way to Potter’s ‘College of Lifemanship’ is supposed to be ‘Yeovil, Somerset’. It's actually much closer to the studio than the West Country. The station, pretty much unchanged today, is Hertford East, Hertfordshire.

The Corus Hotel (formerly the Edgwarebury Hotel), Edgwarebury Lane, off Barnett Lane, Elstree, became the tennis club where Palfrey is embarrassed by his wonderfully clunky Swiftmobile, before turning the tables on caddish Raymond Delauney (Terry-Thomas).

School For Scoundrels  location: Corus Hotel, Edgwarebury Lane, Elstree, Hertfordshire

School For Scoundrels location: the tennis club: Corus Hotel, Edgwarebury Lane, Elstree, Hertfordshire

A movie favourite – hardly surprising since it’s so close to Elstree Studios – the hotel has been seen in 1939’s Sons of the Sea, with Leslie Banks, the rather dated 1971 Agatha Christie mystery Endless Night, the 1970s black comedy Hawks (with ER’s Anthony Edwards and Bond-to-be Timothy Dalton), Hide and Seek (1963), Not Now Comrade and, most memorably, Hammer’s The Devil Rides Out and (briefly) Hot Fuzz.

Palfrey’s apartment is on the top floor of the splendidly named (and virtually unchanged) Thurlby Croft, Mulberry Close, off Parson Street, Hendon, London NW4 (top picture).

School For Scoundrels  location: Pinner Road, Harrow, Middlesex

School For Scoundrels location: Henry Palfrey is sold the amazing Swiftmobile: Pinner Road, Harrow, Greater London

The car showroom, at which Dunston and Dudley (Dennis Price and Peter Jones) sell Henry the terrific Swiftmobile, still exists, though the business – strangely – no longer stocks that particular model. It’s Colin Collins, 90-108 Pinner Road, Harrow (now a Hyundai dealership) in Greater London.

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