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Wednesday, 29 January 2014

A Surprise Visitor

 A Surprise Visitor

Apart from Ermintrude and our Volvo coaches, we don't see many high value, high performance vehicles on site.  So, it was quite a surprise on a wet January day to see a white Alfa Romeo 4C turn into our car park.  It turned out that Alfa Romeo were doing a photo shoot nearby and the car wasn't clean enough so they needed a hose.  Out with the camera and a few shots before it went away.  In return we were offered a ride in it but sadly the photoshoot took too long and it was back to earth with a bump as we left to do our school runs.  However, the marketing lady was very interested in Ermintrude and we may well see her or Florence featured in future Alfa advertising material (if the cars can keep up*).

 To see the 4C take a look at

 * 0–100 km/h (0-62 mph) 4.5 seconds

Florence's Film Career

Florence’s Film Career

You may have read about Ermintrude’s role in Dancing On The Edge (BBC2 2013).

It was Florence’s turn next and in late 2013 she set off from Rendlesham for Hackney, in East London, where she was needed for a few days as part of a film set depicting a disused bus garage.  The location was bounded by a canal, the gasworks, a railway line and a series of derelict buildings.  I remember thinking ‘We’ve made the big-time here!’ as I parked Florence where directed then caught a train back to Wickham Market. 

All I knew at this stage was that she would not need to be driven while at the location and I waited for a call to come and take her away.  I assumed the shoot was for a commercial or a promotional video.

A few days later I was told that I could collect her the next morning and I set off by train back to Hackney.  Trains were running late and I missed my connection at Ipswich.  I was late on set and I knew I had missed the opportunity to move Florence off the set at the expected time.
On arrival I was puzzled to see press photographers positioned to take shots of the set which was now screened off from public view.  Shooting was taking place and I had great difficulty persuading the security people that I needed to get on the set.  I then discovered that it was not a commercial I was involved in but scenes from Johhny Depp’s latest full-length feature, entitled ‘Mortdecai’.  It also stars Gwynneth Paltrow and Ewan McGregor.

And No!  I didn’t see any of them but I did see Johnny Depp’s trailer, and watched his stunt-double hit by a Rolls-Royce and flung into the air before crashing through the windscreen.  Three times!

At 4.45pm I was finally allowed to drive off into the London rush-hour traffic and make my way home.  Tragically, a cyclist had been killed in a collision with a lorry in Bow and all traffic was being delayed and diverted making it a very long and slow journey.  

After several hours Florence and I both heaved a sigh of relief as we reached Suffolk and the calm of Rendlesham.