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The Warp

Puller’s Pad

We were looking for locations. We needed a place for Cathy and Reg’s first luxurious apartment and there was a rather chic modern block of studio flats I’d noticed on the Fulham Road and we went door knocking, asking if anyone would allow us to shoot some scenes in their flat. Those were the days when pornographic films had recently hit the limelight and I think some householders thought that we were looking for a location for pornographic activity. Most said, ‘No, sorry,’ and firmly shut the door; but one young man, dressed in existentialist black, in I think the last flat along the first floor balcony at the back, began to chat us up, asking whether we knew of anyone who would like him to pose for nude photo opportunity encounters.

We explained that we dealt with actors and actresses, not bits of cheesecake. He said we’d be welcome to shoot at his place, but please be sure to give him plenty of notice as he was often away. ‘This is just a puller’s pad.’

Carol White came with me when I was reconnoitring Popham Buildings, that huge Victorian block of flats in Islington, recording the voiceovers to be used in the film. Talking of lack of space, one of the inmates said ‘These are the only flats where you can sit on the toilet and cook your breakfast at the same time.’

Despite her ‘humble’ background, Carol was always the visiting superstar, not really able to empathise with other people’s grief or share her own. Even though her own living accommodation was not that luxurious, she sighed and said something like, ‘I remember when I was in bed with Adam Faith, he told me there are many disadvantages to showbiz but it does have consolations.’


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