Liz Bentley in conversation with Garth Morton aka Wellington Womble

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Hi Garth,

I am very excited you are a friend of my friend Gumbi Tog.  I started writing a blog called “Liz Bentley news while waiting for the Tesco Delivery man” I do selfies with the delivery men, when they have time, but sometimes they don’t, or don’t want to so I’m looking to branch out and talk with other people who inspire me.  Please get back to me if you are interested in me interviewing you and just remember  – You’re a Womble.  Liz.  p.s. Do you have any pics?

Hi Liz,

Yeah I Wombled and was on all the recordings on violin. I don’t have any pics although I used to take the costume home for an airing, they stank something rotten. I’ve a few tales that might interest you.  Feel free to ask.  Garth.

Thanks Garth, how exciting.  You play the violin very well.  What did you like most about being a Womble?
Were any of the Wombles victims of sexual harassment ie from bbc djs ? (I don’t want to cause pain so do move on from this question if it brings up trauma )
Was it difficult to run away from adoring crowds in the costume ?
My husband (and I’m sure millions others ) will be playing the Wombling song at his 50th party, at 3am, how do you feel about being part of such an iconic band that a generation grew up with , and that when they get Alzheimer’s they won’t ever forget?  Liz
I didn’t enjoy being a Womble. Firstly you weren’t allowed to talk which was probably a good thing as many a time when I had my hand squeezed or my mask lifted by hundreds of hysterical kids I wanted to let out a tirade of expletives.
Secondly, the costumes were six-foot in length, I being 5′.7″ was constantly tripping up over my feet and worse were the eyes in the head which hung down over my cheeks so my line of vision was somewhat restricted resulting in me tripping and banging into objects. This all brought about a comedic effect which was met with howls of laughter as I missed and crashed down yet another step.
The outfit became unbearably hot and we stripped down to our underwear to survive which gave me paranoia should the costume suddenly come apart. We were dropped in a large park where there was some circus people present and this joker with his pet monkey decided to let it loose on me. Terrified that it might bite and I’d get rabies I tore off at high-speed up this field, the monkey gaining on me. I was tripping up over my oversize feet and cursing all the way. Fortunately the joker caught up just as ‘Cheetah’ descended on me. I pleaded to him to get the bloody thing away from me which he did reluctantly. Out of breath and exhausted I had to make a circuit of the field to shake hands with the adoring crowd. Suddenly a fine little tyke pulled my mask up and seeing my red, sweating face turned to his mum and goes ‘Look mum. He’s pissed!’  If you had put a lighted wick in my mouth it would have burnt for three days!  Garth.

I’m sorry to hear that Garth.  The world needs to know about this.  Can I have your permission to publish? I always ask my Tesco Delivery men.  Liz

Womble free.  Garth x

Thank you, I am star struck.  Liz x

 

 

2 Replies to “Liz Bentley in conversation with Garth Morton aka Wellington Womble”

  1. Dear Liz,

    I googled Garth Morton this morning which thanks to your piece confirms what I needed to know for thirty years:

    My dad, Joe, used to work with Garth on ‘Jesus Christ Superstar’ throughout the 1970s.

    Both were violinists.

    As a young chap, dad would sometimes mention Garth as ‘a bit of a character’ and that he was even one of those wombles on Top Of The Pops.

    I think your piece bears out both theories of his.

    Dad did mention that Garth and he used to play chess on a pocket set in the pit inbetween songs. Dad took chess quite seriously, but I’m not sure that Garth did.

    Dad, finally, told me that Garth had taught him the following, and got me to try and repeat it three times:

    One smart fella, he felt smart,
    Two smart fellas they felt smart,
    Three smart fellas they felt smart,
    And they all felt smart together.

    I still can’t say it.

    Anyway, thanks for reminding me of my dad’s career! And particularly, for confirming that Garth was indeed a ‘womble’.

    Like

    1. Hi Robert,
      How lovely that you came across my interview in your Garth search, I must have written it with you in mind on a very unconscious level, the collective uncosncious as Carl Jung would say… I was indeed very excited to hear Garth’s stories, we need more Garth’s in our world and it must be heart warming to know your Dad had such fun with him too … I love the smart tongue twister … I think right now we need some smart people to work as worldwide leaders!! but I think there really are only about 3 in the world right now!!
      Love and good wishes
      Liz

      Like

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