WORZEL Gummidge fans will be excited to know there’s a new episode heading for TV screens and, even better, you won’t have to wait until Christmas to see it.

We’re of course referring to the new version of the loveable scarecrow with Mackenzie Crook writing, directing and starring in the lead role.

While previous episodes have all been scheduled during the festive season, the next instalment comes closer to Bonfire Night – for good reason if the title, Guy Forks, is anything to go by.

For viewers more familiar with the 1970s TV series starring Jon Pertwee, this more recent adaptation has less head swapping and more eco-friendly messaging.

When people saw images of this new take on the Barbara Euphan Todd books back in 2019, they would be forgiven for thinking it looked a little creepy, but it didn’t take long for viewers to be won over by this loveable turnip-head.

Treated to a thoroughly charming, funny family comedy, which, while drawing inspiration from the original books, brought he character firmly into the 21st century.

As Crook says: “The original stories, they’re kind of difficult to bring up to date, they’re very of their time, in the 1930s. Not much of what they’re talking about is relevant, but the characters and the feel of it is still relevant, and so I’ve got this luxury of picking out the bits I like from the books and weaving my own stories around them which sometimes feels like a liberty.

“But I’m sure Barbara Euphan Todd would have appreciated what we’re doing with it – bringing it up to date in a kind and caring and environmentally-friendly way.”

The first instalments were such a hit, they were followed by another film, which aired last year on Christmas Eve.

Will Guy Forks spell the end of Worzel Gummidge?

This weekend’s newest tale sees Paul Kaye co-star as Worzel’s cousin, Guy Forks, who has arrived at Scatterbrook in time to go on top of the bonfire. However, a row between the relatives about who could do the other’s job better leads to them switching places.

Your Local Guardian: Toby Jones as Mr Wheelturn, the Alderman, in the latest Worzel Gummidge. Picture credit: BBCToby Jones as Mr Wheelturn, the Alderman, in the latest Worzel Gummidge. Picture credit: BBC

The village committee (all six members of which are played by Crook’s Dectorists co-star Toby Jones) is too distracted to notice the substitution, so it’s looks like it’s up to Worzel’s human friends, siblings Susan (India Brown) and  John (Thierry Wickens), to find a way to rescue the scarecrow before it’s too late.

At least they have Aunt Sally (Vicki Pepperdine) to help them.

It’s to be hoped Worzel does indeed make it off the bonfire in one piece, as he’ll soon be seen in two more adventures.

Two more episodes of Worzel Gummidge in the offing

It’s also been announced that the next instalment, Twitchers, will sees a flock of rare choughs descend on Scatterbook Farm. Worzel is excited about the chance to scare such a rare bird, but when word gets out it becomes clear that he isn’t the only one who wants to get closer to the feathered visitors.

There’s more excitement in Calliope Jane, as a travelling fair arrives. Legend has it that there’s an enchanted organ which sends humans to sleep so that scarecrows can enjoy the rides without being seen, but dare he and his friends take the risk?

:: Worzel Gummidge airs on BBC One at 5:45pm on Saturday, November 6.