BROADCAST: 21 Oct 1957


Script by Spike Milligan and Larry Stephens



GREENSLADE: This is the BBC. The all leather Goon Show presents ‘The Great Regent’s Park Swim’.

ORCHESTRA: ‘Stately-Homes-of-England’ style introduction.

GRAMS: Traffic noise. Tooting horns. Add in jet fighters swooping low.

GREENSLADE: England, eighteen thirty. On the throne sat George the fourth, on a chair sat Tom Smith, and lying in a gutter outside – Neddie Seagoon.

SEAGOON: What! What! What! What! What! What! What! What! What! What! Eeiogh what? Where’s my leather speaking trumpet? (Megaphone) Hello folks. He-ello folks. Calling folks. I’m not lying in the gutter, I’m standing in it. It just looks as though I’m lying.

GREENSLADE: Yes. You look like a liar.

SEAGOON: What! What! What! What! What! What! Just for that I shall do an impersonation of a car approaching.

GRAMS: Approaching car. Squeal of tyres. Car stops.

SEAGOON: Even as I spoke a door drew up.

FX: Car door opens.

YAKAMOTO: Aaah! Are you Neddie Sleagoon?

SEAGOON: Yes. I’m Nleddie Sleagoon.

YAKAMOTO: Aahio! Will you please accept invitlation from thlis German scientist.

SEAGOON: I’ll come along – just to find out what you’re saying.

YAKAMOTO: Aah, please Neddie, please. Jump into this river and I will dlag you there.

GRAMS: Large splash. Car driving away at speed.

GREENSLADE: Scene two. A piece of string on the floor of the Eidelberger laboratory.

GRAMS: Pots bubbling at a variety of pitches.

EIDELBERGER: Ah ha ha-ha, ha-ha ho.

YAKAMOTO: Ha ha ha-ha ho!

EIDELBERGER: Ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha wha ha ho!

YAKAMOTO: Ha ha ha-ha ho!

EIDELBERGER: Yakamoto, in this test tube I have succeeded in creating life from inanimate matter!

YAKAMOTO: Ooh boy!

EIDELBERGER: Now, I will just add a dash of thin people’s herbs, two spoonfuls of instant liquorice, and a soupcon of Alistair’s horse-oils.

GRAMS: Swell noise of bubbling.

EIDELBERGER: That’s given it something to think about. Now, pour out the gooey paste into this blue serge suit.

GRAMS: The sound of lumps of a sticky substance dropped into a container.

EIDELBERGER: Ahh! Put this stethoscope on it and listen.

ECCLES: (Muffled) There’s a smile on my face

                              for the whole human race,

             (Full voice) It’s almost like being insane!

EIDELBERGER: Curses!! We have invented Eccles.

ECCLES: Ooh! Taa.

EIDELBERGER: Run for it!

GRAMS: Feet running away at speed.

CRUN: (Approaching) Hoh hum yawow eighoy…

ECCLES: Ooh, thank you. Oh, hello Mister... He…ello Mister Crun!

CRUN: Oh. Hello modern Eccles. You’re looking well, modern Eccles.

ECCLES: Yeah. I’ve just been invented.

CRUN: Oooh!

ECCLES: Ho-oh! (Singing) Hum a dla ha dla-ha ha!

                              dha ha dha ha-ha dlum.

CRUN: Ah, steady Eccles. Steady modern Eccles…

ECCLES: What? Ah I don’t care if I do… (Improv)

CRUN: Stop doing that Eccles. Now, just step inside this tiger.

ECCLES: (Brightly) OK!

GRAMS: Tiger growls. Sound of swallowing.

ECCLES: (Distant. With echo) Ooh! It’s dark in this tiger. I wonder where the light switch is?

CRUN: Modern Eccles – poor modern ignorant fellow that he is, doesn’t know that this is only eighteen-thirty and the elecetric lighting inside tigers has not been invented yet.

ECCLES: (Distant as before) He-ello! He-e-ello-o! Anybody else in the tiger?

SEAGOON: (With echo) Yes. Pardon me my good man, could you tell me the way out of this tiger?

ECCLES: Take the lift to the third floor, past the BBC censor’s office.

SEAGOON: Thank you.

FX: Door opens.

CRUN: Ah! It’s Seagoon out of tiger by jove. Welcome to the Eidelberger Foundation laboratory. We want you to take part in a vital, useless, government-type experiment.

SEAGOON: I’ll do anything for my useless country.

CRUN: Right. Spike Milligoon?

SPIKE: Yes, buddy?

CRUN: Have you finished playing the part of Yakamoto?

SPIKE: Yes, boy.

CRUN: Then take the part of modern Min!

BANNISTER: Ok buddy. (Sings) Boh boh boh boooh…

CRUN: Now modern Min, give Mister Seagoon the tube of green liquid to swallow.

BANNISTER: Come on, hot Henry.

SEAGOON: (Swallowing noises) Ghmmm, Gurogh ghhgh. Hmm…ARGHHH! What was it!?

CRUN: Ah, if only we knew.

SEAGOON: What? It might be poison. I demand to see my landlord.

CRUN: Ah, Mister Seacroon, so that we can observe the effect of the green liquid,. kindly stand in this bucket of boiled dungarees.

SEAGOON: Anything for England!

CRUN: Min, get ready to take all this down.


SEAGOON: I’ll hope the dawn…

GRAMS: Two hand grenade explosions.

CRUN: Eleven o’clock, both ears exploded.

GRAMS: A pair of bedsprings.

CRUN: Eleven one, braces burst at the knees.

SEAGOON: You fiend! I can’t live with my trousers round my ankles.

CRUN: Why not?

SEAGOON: My legs might fall down. Oh, the embarrassment of this is beyond…

FX: Set of false teeth in metal bucket.

CRUN: Eleven three, choppers fell out.

SEAGOON: (Gummy) I’ll never play the Palladium again.

BANNISTER: Never mind, here’s Max Gelsop to play it for you.

SEAGOON: Round the back for the old brandy there.

GRAMS: Boots running away.


MAX GELDRAY – ‘No One Ever Tells You’ [1]


GREENSLADE: That was Max Geldray, the well known carpenter and joiner. By the way, listeners are not obliged to laugh at that as it was a personal matter twixt Geldray and the cast. Part three – all day long Mister Crun experimented to discover what effect his green liquid had had on Neddie.

FX: Pistol shot.

SEAGOON: YOAW! Five hundred!

CRUN: Oh. It hasn’t made him bullet proof Minnie.

BANNISTER: What a pity.

SEAGOON: Where’s my speaking trumpet? (Megaphone) Hello folks! Calling folks! Send for the police folks. I’ll never last the show out like this folks. HEELP!

FX: Door opens.

EIDELBERGER: Ah, here Crun. We will take over from you.

YAKAMOTO: Yes. Leave Sleagoon to us.

CRUN: Oh, right.

FX: (Quill scratching on paper – continue under.)

CRUN: I, Henry Crun, leave Seagoon to Yakamoto and Eidel. Thank you.

EIDELBERGER: Right. Now grab Seagoon and into the tank with him.



GRAMS: Body hitting water. Swimming into the distance.

YAKAMOTO: Oh boy! Oh look! Neddie Seagoon ah not ah-sinking.

EIDELBERGER: So that’s what the green liquid was! Yakamoto, we have invented swimming!

ORCHESTRA: Tatty chord in C.

SEAGOON: Huh – swimming? Snatching up a bottle of green liquid I set off the achieve my lifelong ambition, namely running along with a bottle of green liquid.

GRAMS: Pair of boots running. Gradually speed up. (Continue under.)

GREENSLADE: (Over) Ah, Mister Seagoon, if I were you I’d patent that idea.

SEAGOON: (Over) You’re right! Then when the idea catches on I can charge royalties every time they run along with a bottle of green liquid. SUCCESS!

GRAMS: Coconut shells – galloping. Slow down at end.

SEAGOON: What a bit of luck. Here comes a horse drawn patents-office.

SPRIGGS: Woooooah! Ooh Jim. (Sings) Ooh Jim! Step into the waiting room, Jim.

FX: Door opens. Door closes.

SEAGOON: Gad! There in the corner of a foreign field surrounded by flies, was…

ORCHESTRA: Bloodnok theme.

GRAMS: Massed flies buzzing.

BLOODNOK: Oooooah! Oh dear, oh dear! Curse these flies. Dear, dear, dear! How can these naturalist magazines publish pictures like these! I shall be glad when my ten-year subscription runs out, I tell you. I must remember to have these copies bound in brown leather and labelled “A History of the English Speaking Peoples”.

SEAGOON: Uoagh uoagh! Er, pardon me.

BLOODNOK: Egad, a man wearing clothes.

SEAGOON: Yes. I must be the only fully clad naturalist in the world.

BLOODNOK: It must be hell in there. What is your name?

SEAGOON: Neddie Seagoon.

BLOODNOK: Neddie Seagoon!? I…I… I didn’t recognise you.


BLOODNOK: I’ve never seen you before. [2]

SEAGOON: Oh, so that’s why. Well, if you must know, I’m Miriam Potts nephew.

BLOODNOK: Miriam Potts? Ahoooieugh! Ahoooieugh! The darling of Darjeeling. Oh, how we used to dance together.

PIANO: (Introduction arpeggios)

BLOODNOK: (Sings) We waltzed the whole night through

                              The ‘Curry and Rice’ waltz with you.

                              It’s really hot stuff.

                              It’s better than the old duff

                              and the English-Irish stew.

                              It’s the ideal waltz for two

                              sailing along in the blue.

                              I say let’s dance forever

                              and don’t answer “Never”

                              the ‘Curry and Rice’ waltz with you! [3]

FX: Telephone rings. Handpiece lifts.

BLOODNOK: Hello? Thank you!

FX: Receiver slams down.

SEAGOON: Who was that?

BLOODNOK: A recording company.

SEAGOON: Really?

BLOODNOK: Yes. They wanted to know the time. I’m going to write and tell them you know.

SEAGOON: But by the time they get it, it will be too late.

BLOODNOK: I shall give them tomorrows time.

SEAGOON: I see! Well, what is that long brown parcel you’ve got in your long brown bathing suit?

BLOODNOK: Ah, it’s something that I have invented.


BLOODNOK: Regents Park Canal.

SEAGOON: What a stroke of luck! With that canal and this bottle of green liquid, I can swim across it without using a bridge, and any revenues from it I’ll split in two and keep both.

BLOODNOK: Well, one doesn’t get an offer like that every day. Very well, at dawn tonight you start training for the great Regents Park swim.

ORCHESTRA: Dramatic link.

GRYTPYPE: Did you hear that Moriarty?
MORIARTY: Yes, it went… (sings link) ‘Bah bah bah baaa!’

GRYTPYPE: Moriarty, we’ve got to stop Seagoon swimming.

MORIARTY: Sapristi bezonika dowser,[4] explain.

GRYTPYPE: Well, I’ve just invented the word ‘help’ for people who are drowning. If Seagoon markets swimming, my word ‘help’ is worthless.

MORIARTY: I tell you, Neddie will not swim the Regents Park canal. Let this sinister music be a warning to him.

ORCHESTRA: Dramatic link.

SEAGOON: Did you hear that Bloodnok?

BLOODNOK: Yes, it went… (sing link) ‘Bum bum ba-la-loh’.

SEAGOON: (Megaphone) Hello folks. Calling folks. I’m about to start training for my perilous swim across Regents canal. Hup…!

GRAMS: Body falling into water.

BLOODNOK: And so saying he dove into a field containing Rage Ellington. Go on Rage, play those early naughty Goon Show melodies.


RAY ELLINGTON QUARTET – “Swaller Tail Coat.”[5]


GREENSLADE: ‘The Great Regent’s Park Swim’ part two. In preparation… (surprised) OH!

GRAMS: Body falling into water.

SEAGOON: That got rid of him, folks. (Gloats) Hm hmmm! Now, in preparation for the swim I swum the English channel, the Irish channel, the Scottish channel, the Jewish channel, the Kensington round pond and the Kensington square pond. Finally, as my pierce de résistance I swam Beethoven’s fifth Symphony. But, one evening, “as the good things of day began to droop and drowse, nights black agents to their preys did rouse.”

GRYTPYPE: Did you hear that Moriarty?

MORIARTY: Yes. It was Macbeth.

GRYTPYPE: Ignorant swine, it was Shakespeare.

MORIARTY: Aooowwwwww!

GRYTPYPE: Stop aowing you fool. You’ll have us both out of this tree.

MORIARTY: But they can’t turn us out of this tree. We’ve paid the rent in advance.

GRYTPYPE: Well stop waving that crow in my face.

MORIARTY: He’s our landlord.

GRYTPYPE: Oh. It wasn’t worth him blacking up for the part, was it. Now, try and locate Neddie. Erm, Moriarty, hand me my telescope.


GRYTPYPE: Thank you. Now the salt.

GRAMS: Loud chewing and crunching.

GRYTPYPE: (Swallows) Ah, now I can see him. Dashed strange – he’s going into the zoo, through the tigers entrance. Moriarty, put on this tiger skin.


ORCHESTRA: Sinister chords.

WILLIUM: Now er, Mister Seacroon, you want a vacant cage with a tiger bowl?

SEAGOON: That is correct Mister Zoo-keeper, and if anyone wants me, I’ll be wearing this tiger disguise. You see, I don’t want to take any chances before the big swim.

WILLIUM: Yer. Well, we ain’t got an empty cage but you can share this one with our Bengal tiger. He won’t hurt you, so long as you a-keeps your mouth a-shut there.

SEAGOON: Fair enough. (Going off) Call me at six.


FX: Cage door slams shut.

SEAGOON: (Megaphone) He-eello folks! I’m speaking to you now from inside the tiger skin. From now on I shall only speak in thinks bubbles so that the Bengal tiger will not attack me.

ECCLES: (Muffled, with echo) Hello? Hello? Dat you Neddie?

SEAGOON: Thinks – “Yes, it’s me Eccles”.

ECCLES: Then why don’t you answer me?

SEAGOON: Thinks – “Because I only talk in thinks bubbles”.

ECCLES: Oh! Well how can I see thinks bubbles when I’m inside this Bengal tiger?

SEAGOON: Thinks – “Well open a window”.

FX: Window sliding up.

ECCLES: (Echo stops) Ah, now I can see them.

SEAGOON: Thinks – “Thanks. Well, now you’ve opened a window, why don’t you get out?”

ECCLES: What!? The moment I climb out of this tiger he’d attack me. I know when I’m well off.


ECCLES: When I’ve got money.

ORCHESTRA: Tatty chord in C

GREENSLADE: Meanwhile at the main entrance, we find a man leading a rather mangey, moth-eaten tiger.

GRYTPYPE: Keep up the growling Moriarty.

MORIARTY: (Growling) Owwww. Oww oww oww wowww!

ZOO KEEPER: I’m sorry lads, we’re closed.

GRYTPYPE: Look here my good man, it is imperative that I house my tiger here tonight. You see it’s his evening off and I want him to spend it among friends.

ZOO KEEPER: Well, we’ll squeeze him into this tigers cage here.

GRYTPYPE: (Low) In you go Moriarty. Keep growling.

FX: Cage door shuts.

MORIARTY: (Growls) Owowow! Now to destroy Seagoon and that silly tiger skin.

GRAMS: Tiger growls. Continue under.

MORIARTY: Ah, it’s no good you growling like that at me. I know you’re a phoney Seagoon. Hahahahoohoo! I’ve got you in my power I tell you. You can do a very good imitation of a tiger and that growling, but I know the truth. There’s only me and you in this tiger cage, in imitation tiger skins I tell you. Hahahahoo! I tell you I’m…What?

GREENSLADE: Ladies and gentlemen, listeners are warned that the sound of this scene is unsuitable for children.

MORIARTY: What? Wha..! Why? Why? Why is it unsuitable?

GREENSLADE: Because sir, that animal that you’re attacking is not Neddie but a genuine Bengal tiger.

MORIARTY: (Panic) AHHHHHHHAHIYE! AHHH! (Continues under.)

GRYTPYPE: Steady Moriarty!

MORIARTY: Ahhhiya ahhhiya!

GRYTPYPE: Steady Moriarty, you know that I charge a thousand pounds for using my invention, namely the word ‘help’.

GRAMS: Tiger growls increase in volume.

MORIARTY: (Screams) Aaahhiye! … &c

SEAGOON: What a bit of luck folks! Whilst the Bengal tiger was fighting Moriarty, I nipped out of the cage and made my way to the banks of the Regent’s Park canal where I am now standing.

BLOODNOK: Ahh Neddie! What a heroic sight you are in your wicker-work bathing costume and leather life-belt. Now Neddie, are you ready to dive in?

SPRIGGS: Yes! (Sings) Just a moment Ji-im. Just a minute! A moment I pra-ay!

SEAGOON: It’s singing Jim Spriggs, yodelling piano player by appointment to the coal board.

SPRIGGS: Silence Jim. You can’t swim… (sings) You can’t swi-im… You can’t swim in the canal today.

SEAGOON: What! (sings) Wha-aaaat!

BLOODNOK: Let me say that would you? (sings) Wha-a-a-a-a-at?

SPRIGGS: You cannot swim today because I’ve invented this sign saying ‘No swimming on Mondays’.

SEAGOON: Curses! Foiled by Monday!

BLUEBOTTLE: (Approaching) No no no! I shall save you captain. Enter Bluebottle with washboard and mums new skiffle-type draws.

SEAGOON: Blim blam blom! It’s the well known Finchley lad, heavily protected against the wind with newspaper stuffed in the cracks in his spectacles.

BLUEBOTTLE: Yes. I have come to save you from Monday. Neddie my captain, my lovely little captain. Raises in ecstasy onto tips of toes, bringing little knots into play on back of legs – knots, knots, knots. In this position I will now skiffle. Sings –

                    “You’re nothing but a hound dog, (woof, woof)

you’re nothing but a hound dog, (woof, woof,)

you’re nothing but a…”

FX: Lump of wood on crust.

BLUEBOTTLE: (Pain) Ohi hoi! Who threw that mangle in my ear hole?

SEAGOON: It was me. It belonged to my mother. Now, explain – how can you save me from not swimming on a Monday?

BLUEBOTTLE: Monday has gone.

SEAGOON: Why? How?

BLUEBOTTLE: I just invented Tuesdays.

SPRIGGS: WHAT? Let me see Jim.

BLUEBOTTLE: Here it is Jim.

SPRIGGS: Wait a minute Jim. This is a square. Tuesday is oblong.

BLUEBOTTLE: I haven’t finished it yet.

FX: Mallet on lump of iron.

BLUEBOTTLE: There you are – a perfectly straight Tuesday.

SEAGOON: Hurrah! Saved by a little lad of tender years and tough boots.

BLOODNOK: Right Neddie. Now drink your green liquid and swim!

GRYTPYPE: Hands up all of you. Bloodnok, drop that Regents Park canal.

FX: Lump of iron falls on concrete.

GRYTPYPE: And I warn you, nobody shout ‘help’. That is a word I have just invented and will cost anybody five hundred pounds to use. Now, give me that green liquid. Right now Neddie, into the canal!

SEAGOON: Ah! But I can’t swim without that green liquid. I…ahhhh!

GRAMS: Body in water.

SEAGOON: (Distant) You swine, you pushed me in. HELP!

GRYTPYPE: Out you come Ned. To using the word ‘help’ – five hundred pounds.

FX: Cash register – money in drawer.

GRYTPYPE: Thank you.

SEAGOON: Wait! Wait! But I…

GRAMS: Body into water.


GRYTPYPE: Out you come Neddie. To using the word ‘help’ – another five hundred pounds.

FX: Cash register – money in drawer.

GRYTPYPE: I thank you.

SEAGOON: But look here, I…

GRAMS: Body into water.

SEAGOON: (Distant) You swine! You pushed me in. HEEELP!

GRYTPYPE: Out you come Neddie. To using the word ‘help’ another five hundred pounds.

FX: Cash register – money in drawer.

GRYTPYPE: Thank you.

SEAGOON: Wait, but I…

GRAMS: (Recording – speeded up) Body falls into water.

                    SEAGOON: You swine! You pushed me in. HEEELP!

GRYTPYPE: Out you come Neddie. To using the word ‘help’, another five hundred.

FX: Cash register.

GRYTPYPE: Thank you.

GRAMS: Body in water.


GRYTPYPE: Out you come Neddie.

SEAGOON: Hello folks. Thank heavens that was only a recording otherwise I might have drowned. I….huh…

GRAMS: (Normal speed) Body in water.

GRYTPYPE: Now, good heavens – what has happened to him?

LITTLE JIM: He’s fallen in the water.

GRYTPYPE: Well said little Jim. Saved by a catch phrase.

ORCHESTRA: End theme.

GREENSLADE: That was the Goon Show, a BBC recorded programme 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 programme produced by Charles Chiltern.






[1] By Carroll Coates and Hub Atwood.  It was one of the numbers on Frank Sinatra’s new record “A Swingin’ Affair” recorded in 1956 and released the following year.


[2] Milligan very often recycled lines he fancied. This one was a repeat of a line he had first tried in ‘The Missing Boa Constrictor” (24/7).


[3] This little gem was undoubtedly composed by Milligan. Check for similarities with ‘The Rock and Roll Waltz’ – Kay Starr with the Hugo Winterhalter Orchestra. 30 March 1956 hit the charts.

[4] Milligan fudges the line. He then ad libs; “What! I couldn’t have written that.”


[5] According to Chappell & Co. the words and music were both by Bob Miller.