BROADCAST: 14 Feb 1957 [1]


Script by Spike Milligan and Larry Stephens.



GREENSLADE: This is the BBC Home Service. Here is the result of last night’s big fight. Patrick O’Donovan, labourer of no fixed address, six months. Michael O’Bolligan fined five pounds. And now at eight stone seven pounds, in transparent shorts, The Goon Show.

ORCHESTRA: National Anthem of the Pacific Republic of Yukkabukkoo. Nanny goat trumpet, bass trombone, piano, piccolo, triangle, Saxophone and bass drum.

SEAGOON: … but that’s another story. Mr Greenslade, divulge to the listeners this weeks secret title.

MILLIGAN: Snoring. (Extended.)

GREENSLADE: Ladies and gentlemen, as you can hear we present - ‘The Sleeping Prince’. [2]

GRAMS: Distant carillon of bells.

SEAGOON: Yes, it was Christmas night in the labour exchange and the inmates were scraping the afters off the walls.

GRAMS: Fade in bad jazz piano, crowd noises.

SEAGOON: Merry Christmas everybody!

GRYTPYPE: I say, you with the four helpings on your face!

SEAGOON: What? What what what what what what what what what what what what!? The voice came from a tall hand-painted man with holly attached.

GRYTPYPE: Step over here, little mass unemployment.

SEAGOON: A merry Christmas gentlemen!

GRYTPYPE: We’ve been watching your progress and we feel it’s time you went out into the world.


GRYTPYPE: Err, anywhere. What kind of unemployment do you want?

SEAGOON: I’d like a job with no work attached.

GRYTPYPE: No, that went this morning.

SEAGOON: Eh? What! This morning? To whom?

GRYTPYPE: The manager of the labour exchange.

SEAGOON: Does he want an assistant?


SEAGOON: Thank heaven. Then I’m still one of the lads! Ah ha ha! A merry Christmas to ye!

GRYTPYPE: And a merry Christmas Neddie. Now allow me to introduce this steaming wreck.

MORIARTY: Thank you. I am Count Fred ‘Legs’ Moriarty, unimportant minister extraordinary to the republic of Yukkabukkoo.

SEAGOON: Yukkabukkoo.

MORIARTY: Yes, Yukkabukkoo.

SEAGOON: Yukkabukkoo.

MORIARTY: Yukkabukkoo.

SEAGOON: Yukkabukkoo.

GRYTPYPE: Neddie, you must stop those witty sallies and report to me at once.

SEAGOON: Merry Christmas!

GRYTPYPE: Thank you Neddie. Now Neddie, (if you’ll pardon the expression), there’s and unemployed job going with monies. Now would you kindly present to desk B?

SEAGOON: Hurrah! At last some money with unemployment attached. (Self fade) Ha ha ha ha ha ha!

MORIARTY: That was beautifully done Grytpype.

GRYTPYPE: Yes, yes. We must now report to the revolutionary committee of Yakka-ba-cool and tell them that all is well.

MORIARTY: I’ll say that for you - Yukkabukkoo!

GRYTPYPE: Pronunciation was perfect.

MORIARTY: Thank you.

GRYTPYPE: Meantime over to Seagoon and Clerk Spriggs.

GRAMS: Office noises. Quiet chatter.

FX: Door opens. Shop bell rings.

SEAGOON: Ah. Anybody at home?

SPRIGGS: Ah yes - yes Jim. Now then, come over here. Now, name please?

SEAGOON: Neddie Tom Dick Harry Seagoon.

SPRIGGS: We can’t give jobs to any Tom Dick or Harry Seagoon.

SEAGOON: Too late. I’ve been chosen by the minister of Yukkabukkoo…

SPRIGGS: Yukkabukkoo.

SEAGOON: Yukkabukkoo.

SPRIGGS: Yukkabukkoo.

SEAGOON: Yukkabukkoo.

SPRIGGS: Of course, of course. Now tell me, have you ever been president of a pacific republic before?

SEAGOON: No, but I’ve got a good suit.

SPRIGGS: Splendid Jim. The job is yours.

SEAGOON: What job?

SPRIGGS: The president of the republic of Yukkabukkoo.

SEAGOON: How much does it pay?

SPRIGGS: It pays forty thousand pounds in Yukkabukkoo money.

SEAGOON: What! What? What are the hours?

SPRIGGS: Nine to five with a tea break at eleven.

SEAGOON: I accept. I accept! Where is it?

SPRIGGS: In the south pacific.

SEAGOON: The south pacific - the land of seas! Mnoiheheheheho. Then southward ho!

ORCHESTRA: Brass band arrangement of ‘Over There!’.

MILLIGAN: (Further snoring.)

GREENSLADE: As you can hear this is ‘The Sleeping Prince’ part two. And now a reading from Morse.

GRAMS: Morse sender. Fade under. (PETER: “This is station Hearn-Hearn of the Hearn-Hearn network, Ed Hearn reporting. Today on board the liner SS. Hearn-Hearn arriving at the port of  Pont Quinottas in the republic of Yukka-ba-cool is the newly elected president Mr Neddie Tom Dick Harry SEAGOON of London England, Hearn-Hearn of the Hearn-Hearn. High hopes are entertained that the installation this twenty-three stone president will have a stabilizing effect on the country.”) [3] Morse key fades out.

GRAMS: Distant ships siren. Brass band on wharf. Distant crowds cheering. Swell. Add tugboat hooters for effect. Fade into background.

GRYTPYPE: Here comes Mr Seagoon now - down both gang planks too.

MORIARTY: What a fine presidential figure he makes in that morning suit and flat cap.

GRYTPYPE: Yes. Here Moriarty - put these teeth in and smile.

MORIARTY: (Suction noises.) Owwwwwwwwwwww.

GRYTPYPE: That’s enough.

MORIARTY: Thank you.

GRYTPYPE: Over here Neddie!

SEAGOON: I say, aren’t you from the Battersea labour exchange?

GRYTPYPE: Yes, but we have a small branch out here licensed to sell strawberry teas and morris dancing.

SEAGOON: Ah ha ha! Sending British culture abroad, eh?

GRYTPYPE: Best place for it, what?

MORIARTY: Now then Mr Seagoon - we the people of the glorious republic of Yukkabukkoo! give a glorious welcome to you our new glorious president.

SEAGOON: Don’t mention it. Where do I clock in?


FX: Time punch.

GRYTPYPE: Thank you.

MORIARTY: Now then mon president, the triumphant procession. You drive through the streets in this open necked shirt and we’ll follow behind in this bullet proof car. But first – our glorious national anthem!

ORCHESTRA: (Yukkabukkoo National Anthem.)

SEAGOON: What a beautiful tune. Has anyone set it to music?

GRYTPYPE: No one has had the courage.

MORIARTY: Now then, come president - to the Palazzo des Veritas. [4]

SEAGOON: The palace of varieties. Of course. Drive on!

MORIARTY: But first our glorious Max Geldray!



MAX GELDRAY: ‘Hoedown Rag’


GREENSLADE: With that rousing ovation ringing in his ears, Seagoon arrived at the palace and was shown to the president’s private chambers.

WILLIUM: Welcome mate.

SEAGOON: Who are you?

WILLIUM: Private Chambers mate. I’m your valet.

SEAGOON: Wait. You’re a south pacific cockney?

WILLIUM: Yes mate. I got the job at the Battersea labour exchange. You see they’re a bit short of south pacific cockney’s out here.

SEAGOON: Right. Unpack my matching brown paper parcels and lay out my mess tins.

WILLIUM: You going to have some mess then?

SEAGOON: No, I’m dining with the British ambassador.

WILLIUM: The same thing isn’t it? Well you’d better take some grub along. They haven’t had any connor[5] since the revolution started.

SEAGOON: Revolution! Where?

WILLIUM: Here mate.

SEAGOON: I’ll soon put a stop to that. Get them on the phone.

FX: Hand cranked phone.


GRAMS: Whistling bullets. Distant rifle fire.

WILLIUM: It’s on now sir.

SEAGOON: Thanks. Hello, revolution?

GRAMS: Whistling bullets. Distant rifle fire.

SEAGOON: How dare you talk to me like that. Drop that telephone at once.

FX: Telephone into cradle.

SEAGOON: Ha ha ha. That taught them a lesson.

FX: Door opens.

GONZALES METZ: Señor el President. I am General Gonzales Metz, [6] leader of both sides in the glorious revolution. Now you will kindly step onto this balcony for your reception.


GRAMS: High powered machine gun nest in full blast.

SEAGOON: Hey. Somebody shot at me.

GONZALES METZ: It’s your imagination.

SEAGOON: Then what are these bullet holes in my bed sheets?

GONZALES METZ: They are for looking through señor.

SEAGOON: Looking through at what?

GONZALES METZ: (Laughing) Anybody who is on the other side!

SEAGOON: Gad! You brilliant passionate southerners!

GONZALES METZ: I do not come from the south, señor. I am from the north.


GONZALES METZ: Oldham labour exchange.

SEAGOON: Of course! I should have recognized that north country accent. Now, I’d better go and inspect the drains….

GRAMS: Knock off hooter.

SEAGOON: Too late. Lunch lads. Must keep to the union hours.

FX: Clock-punch.

GONZALES METZ: Just a minute, before we all clock off, our glorious anthem.

ORCHESTRA: Yukkabukkoo National Anthem.

GRAMS: Morse key in action. ( PETER: “This is station Hearn-Hearn of the Hearn. Ed Hearn reporting. Latest Hearn reports from the republic of Yukka Ba Koo state that this evening a high powered bath drew up outside the British Embassy.  The president stepped out and presented his credentials.”)

FX: Clock-punch.

SEAGOON: Evening lads. Sorry I’m late. I had to buy a new shoe. Now - where’s the British ambassador?

MORIARTY: In this reeking thirty bob-a-week bed-sitter here.

FX: Door opens.

BLOODNOK: Ohoohohohoh! Who’s that? Oh! Oh.. Ooo. Ohhh, come in, come in.

MORIARTY: I’ll open a window.

BLOODNOK: You’ll excuse the mess. I’m just doing the laundry. The er… bullet holes in my white flag were dirty you know.

SEAGOON: Mr Ambassador. I am the new president.

BLOODNOK: Splendid! I’ll open a tin of prunes.

GRAMS: Heavy burst of machine gun fire.

BLOODNOK: Great twisted nurglers, they’re early tonight.

SEAGOON: Who are?

BLOODNOK: The naughty revolution part two.

SEAGOON: You mean - they’re doing matinees?


SEAGOON: Disgraceful. Fighting after five o’clock. Eiougheiougheioughhooo! We can’t afford to pay them overtime! Commander in chief, fall in my army.

ELLINGTON: Si, señor. But first, our glorious national anthem!


ORCHESTRA: Yukkabukkoo National Anthem.


SEAGOON: Merry Christmas.

ELLINGTON: Thank you señor. Now imperial army of Yukkabukkoo, ON PARADE!

GRAMS: Massed boots running.

ELLINGTON: Imperial army, ‘SHUN!

GRAMS: Regiment coming to attention.


GRAMS: Regiment rifle drill.

ELLINGTON: Imperial army from the right NUMBER!



ELLINGTON: All correct señor.

SEAGOON: Right. Men, we’re going to march to stop the revolution (part two). Those men who have been fighting overtime and….

GRAMS: Knock off siren.

SEAGOON: Six o’clock.! That’s all for tonight lads. All for tonight.

FX: Clock punch, three times.

SEAGOON: All be here in the morning. You coming Ellington?

ELLINGTON: No. Me going to sing overtime.

ECCLES: I’m going.


RAY ELLINGTON - ‘Time Takes Care of Everything’


MILLIGAN: Snoring. (Continue under.)

GREENSLADE: As you can hear this is ‘The Sleeping Prince’ part three. And now, a further reading from Morse.

GRAMS: Morse code. Continue under. ( PETER: “Station Hearn-Hearn the Hearn, Ed Hearn reporting of the Hearn-Hearn. This evening the new president of…” SPIKE: “Yukkabukkoo!”…PETER: “…marched his army into the rebel held jungle. Following a well worn carpet of dead leaves (fade) they were soon on the…..”)

GRAMS: Jungle noises. Crickets, frogs and geckos.


BLUEBOTTLE: Where did you get the job of being half the president’s army?

ECCLES: Ooo, I won it in a raffle.

BLUEBOTTLE: Cor. I got mine from a cracker at Myrtle Sprigg’s birthday party.

ECCLES: Oh, that’s living! Here Bluebottle - where did you get that nice uniform?

BLUEBOTTLE: I cut it out of the back of a cornflake packet.

ECCLES: Ooo. I wondered why it gave me such an appetite.

BLUEBOTTLE: Eccles, do you know that a uniform attracts women like flies?

ECCLES: Ooo. I wondered why all your women looked like flies.

BLUEBOTTLE: Yehehehehehe! Eccles… that was funny.

ECCLES: I made a joke then...


ECCLES: They’re all laughing at me you know.

BLUEBOTTLE: Tee hee hee! Eccles, have you ever fired your gun yet?

ECCLES: Oh no!

BLUEBOTTLE: Oh. Let us fire it then.

ECCLES: Oh yeah - dat’s a good idea.

BLUEBOTTLE: You fire then.

ECCLES: Oh - no, no! You fire the gun.

ECCLES: No. You’re the one with the bullets - you do it.

ECCLES: No. I haven’t signed for it. I don’t want to do that. I don’t want to have any trouble on my hands. I don’t want… I been to the doctor and he said I’ve got a nuff’…(mumbles incoherently) I got an uncle in Australia. (Belligerent.) You be careful what you say to me, I’ve got an uncle in Australia!

BLUEBOTTLE: You heard of the Balls Pond Road best shirt wash?


BLUEBOTTLE: Well then, you watch what you’re saying then!

ECCLES: You fire the gun!

BLUEBOTTLE: Alright then - you rotten spoilsport you. (Sings.) Dee, da de dah dan deen dah dah…. Eccles?

ECCLES:  Yeah?

BLUEBOTTLE: What is that dirty little piece of curved metal sticking out from under your rifle then?

ECCLES: Dat? Um, dat’s um….I don’t know.

BLUEBOTTLE: Here, Eccles. Place your finger on it and then see what happens.


GRAMS: Large explosion.

CAST: (Variously) Ohhhhh! Oohheee! What’s that?!

SEAGOON: Did someone fire that gun at me?

ECCLES: Oh no no!


ECCLES: Oh no.

SEAGOON: Then what’s this hole in the seat of my trousers?

BLUEBOTTLE: That’s for looking through.

ECCLES: ‘Ere - let me have a look through. Oooooooooooooo! Oh dear dear!

SEAGOON: What what what what what what what what what what what what what?!

ECCLES: Dere’s somebody inside!

SEAGOON: A stowaway! Come on out and fight.

BLOODNOK: (Muffled) Don’t shoot Neddie - don’t shoot! I’ll come out.

SEAGOON: Gad! The British ambassador. What were you doing in my trousers?

BLOODNOK: Slumming. I’ve come to warn you [7] they’ve only made you president so as to assassinate you and take your wages.

SEAGOON: What? The devils! I resign.

FX: Clock punch.


GRYTPYPE: Hold hard Neddie. What’s this - clocking off early? I’m afraid we shall have to dock you some salary.

SEAGOON: Nonsense. If I stay as president they’ll shoot me.

GRYTPYPE: Oh nonsense dear boy. The people of…

MORIARTY: Yukkabukkoo!

GRYTPYPE: …they love you.

MORIARTY: Of course. Come on Neddie, clock on again as president. Come on, clock on!

SEAGOON: (Bashful.) Oh, very well.

FX: Clock punch.

GRAMS: Pistol shot.

GRYTPYPE: Curse! Missed.

SEAGOON: Alright Grytpype. Who fired that smoking pistol you’re pointing at me?

GRYTPYPE: Err, two men called Jim.

SEAGOON: Right. There’s only one thing for it - we’ll have to storm the rebel’s stronghold or they’ll usurp me.

BLOODNOK: How painful!

SEAGOON: Come - forward one man called Bloodnok!

BLOODNOK: Ohohohohohooooohhhoo yes ipppumm um yes! But first our glorious Yukkabukkooian anthem.


ORCHESTRA: Yukkabukkoo National Anthem.

GRAMS: Rifle fire.

BLOODNOK: Great salty skalibonkers! The rebels are attacking. Eccles?


BLOODNOK:  Form a square and face outwards.

ECCLES: Ok. (Struggling.) Ohh, it hurts!

GRYTPYPE: Moriarty come on. Let’s duck out of here - things are getting too hot.

GRAMS: Whoosh. Whoosh.

GREENSLADE: (Distant) ‘Allo! Attention, s’il vous plaît.

SEAGOON: Look ! It’s a great fat rebel carrying an unarmed white flag.

GREENSLADE: Ah, comment allez vous? Ying tong idle-i- po!

SEAGOON: Listen. He’s speaking French in a foreign language. Is any here bi-lingual?

ECCLES: Oh, I speak two languages my good man.

SEAGOON: Right my good man. Say ‘yes’ in French.

ECCLES: Ok. Si si.

SEAGOON: That’s Italian.

ECCLES: What do you know, I speak three languages!

SEAGOON: Find out what he wants.

GREENSLADE: Listen my friend. My leader ‘el Garbou’ demands unconditional surrender.

SEAGOON: What are his terms?

GREENSLADE: Five pounds down and three and nine a week.

SEAGOON: Tell him we’ll think it over.

GREENSLADE: Very well.

BLOODNOK: But look here, we can’t spend all night in this jungle Seacoon. It hasn’t been aired.

GREENSLADE: Don’t worry - come with me. You can sleep in the rebel prison free of charge.

SEAGOON: I say, that’s damned decent of you. Come chaps!

ORCHESTRA: Tragic ‘ march to the scaffold’ music.

GRAMS: Fade in Morse signal. (PETER: “Hearn-hearn of the hearn-hearn reporting again on the hearn-hearn on the Lester hearn-hearn. It is reported that president Ned off duty spent the night resting in the rebel condemned cell dad. Latest news from rebel headquarters….” (fade.)

SEAGOON: (Massive snoring)

BANNISTER: That’s the fellow there Henry.

CRUN: Oh. Wake up sir. Wake up, it’s time for your daily execution.

SEAGOON: Ah. Thank you. Put it on the table and draw my bath.

CRUN: They’re not going to drown you sir, they’re going…..aowrrrggghh….they’re going to shoot you.

SEAGOON: What what what what what what what what what?! Shoot me? You can’t shoot me. I’m not the president till nine o’clock.

MORIARTY: That’s ten minutes time. Right, till then our glorious nation anthem.

ORCHESTRA: The first four bars of the Yukkabukkoo National Anthem.

SEAGOON: Stop! Please stop. You can’t keep me here. I’m not president till nine. I’m leaving the country before then.

MORIARTY: Eugh! Then allow us first to decorate you with the Grand Order of Charlies.

SEAGOON: What’s that?

GRYTPYPE: This magnificent bandage to be worn over your eyes - so.

SEAGOON: I say, how terribly restful. But… it’s dark inside this bandage.

GRYTPYPE: Yes - we turned the light out.

MORIARTY: Now then little Neddie. Just stand against this wall for a free farewell photograph. (Moving off.) Right now - photographers LOAD!

GRAMS: Firing squad loading guns.


GRYTPYPE: Now Neddie - any last request before your…er…departure?
SEAGOON: Yes. For Plunger Bailey, White, Chunky, Pinhead
[8] and all the lads in queue seven at Battersea Labour Exchange, I’d like you to play your glorious national anthem.

GRYTPYPE: Oh. Alright. Everyone salute.

ORCHESTRA: Yakkabukkoo National Anthem.

MORIARTY: He’s…he’s gone.

GRYTPYPE: Curse! Foiled by our own national anthem and a quick thinking fat man called Ned.

ORCHESTRA: Tatty chord in C

MILLIGAN: Snoring (Extended.)

GREENSLADE: You have just been listening to ‘The Sleeping Prince.’ (Calling) Oh Prince! Prince!

MILLIGAN: (Waking up) What what what?

GREENSLADE: Come on Prince. Time to go home.


GREENSLADE: And so ends this weeks Goon Show, a BBC recorded program featuring Peter Sellers, Harry Secombe, and Spike Milligan, with the Ray Ellington Quartet, Max Geldray and the Orchestra conducted by Wally Stott. Script by Spike Milligan and Larry Stephens - announcer Wallace Greenslade. The program produced by Pat Dixon.



[1] This show was in fact not broadcast as the 6th show of the 7th series, but postponed until after the 19th show on the 14th February 1957. The BBC delayed it from it’s original date of the 8th November due to the international situation at the time. Amongst other things, October saw international panic escalate following the formation of the Warsaw pact; the outbreak of massed demonstrations in Hungry against Russian interference in Poland, while November saw the invasion of Hungry by Russia; the bombing of Egypt by Britain and France to force the re-opening of the Suez canal; the invasion of Cuba by the revolutionary forces of Castro; and Dwight D. Eisenhower won the US Presidential elections. For many people at the time, this was when the cold war seemed likely to become a nuclear reality.

[2] Originally ‘The Sleeping Prince’ was a 1953 play by Terence Rattigan, telling the story of a young actress who captivates and ultimately marries a Prince. Marilyn Monroe and Laurence Olivier starred in the subsequent 1957 film, entitled ‘The Prince and the Showgirl’. Milligan’s script has nothing to do with either.

[3] Another instance of Spike’s many prophetic moments. In fact, while he was writing this script, Fidel Castro was setting sail for Cuba to lead the final stage of his guerrilla war against the Batista Regime and establish himself as President.

[4] I am reasonably sure that this is what Moriarty says. However the correct Spanish should be ‘Palacio de Variedades’.


[5] The word ‘connor’ is from the British Army in India. It was how the largely Irish soldiers made sense of the Hindi/Urdu word for food - ‘khaana’.

[6] There is good reason to suppose that this is a caricature of Fidel Castro, who had been heard occasionally in International broadcasts and interviews.

[7] There is a break here as the audience and cast are laughing so much.

[8] At least two of these were actually wartime buddies of Spikes.