Filmed in 1990 and now digitally remastered.

Interview With Gertrude Bugler Becomes Available!

Filmed in 1990 and is now digitally remastered.

This image may be subject to copyright

Having trained as a Sound Technician at Thames Television in London, Stephen Codling moved down to Dorset in 1989 to work on regional news for TVS (the franchise holder in the south prior to Meridian TV). He fell in love with Dorset and has lived here ever since. His most memorable shoots involved the beautiful countryside and really interesting people.

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In May 1990 TVS filmed a two-part feature to mark the 150th anniversary of Thomas Hardy's birth. This involved filming around the lovely Dorset landscape, interviews with Hardy experts and, of course, Gertrude Bugler. She was then in her 90s and slightly deaf but very bright and engaging. Her memory was amazingly clear about her life all those years ago when she played Tess for the productions in Dorset. It was such a memorable time with her that Steve kept a copy of the complete interview. 

This image may be subject to copyright

In those days master tapes were recycled and used several times so Steve could only keep a VHS copy which had remained on his shelves ever since. Having retired in 2021 it was time to have a clear-out and finally do something with Gertrude's interview, turning it into an up to date video file. "It was a privilege to meet Gertrude and I am delighted that The Thomas Hardy Society have shown an interest and hope that this link to the life of Thomas Hardy will be enjoyed by viewers" (Steve Codling, February 2022).

This footage is published with permission from:

ITV Regional News, Editor, Guy Phillips

Shelley Barratt (nee Hunt), the Reporter on the interview

Mike Toms of the Bugler/Woodall family

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