The bright pink taxi familiar to millions of fans of the cult BBC comedy The League of Gentlemen has gone on show in Beaulieu’s On Screen Cars display of TV and film favourites.
One of the most distinctive people-movers ever to motor onto the small screen, the distinctive 2005 Citroen Dispatch taxi is the transportation choice of cab driver Barbara Tattsyrup (née Dixon), the owner of Bab’s Cabs in Royston Vasey in the award-winning comedy.
A favourite character with many viewers, transgender Barbara has only ever been seen in glimpses of her hands and legs as she drives other residents of Royston Vasey around in her pink taxi. Voiced by Steve Pemberton who – along with fellow writers Mark Gatiss and Reece Shearsmith – played the majority of the characters, Barbara insists on gender neutral pronouns from her customers.
In the initial three series of The League of Gentlemen, which aired between 1999 and 2002, Barbara’s taxi of choice was a bright pink Mazda minicab. However, by the time the show was resurrected for three special episodes in 2017 to celebrate 20 years since The League of Gentlemen first aired on BBC radio, Barbara had upgraded to a purpose-built Citroen Dispatch taxi complete with wheelchair access and painted in the same shocking shade as the original car.
The taxi joins the remarkable line-up of motoring stars in On Screen Cars at Beaulieu. In the hall of fame is Rupert Grint’s flying Ford Anglia from Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Del Boy’s Reliant Regal Supervan from Only Fools and Horses, Mr Bean’s lime green Mini, the Jaguar XKR from James Bond film Die Another Day and Jennifer Saunders’ and Joanna Lumley’s getaway car the Piaggio Ape from Absolutely Fabulous: The Movie.
Entrance to On Screen Cars is included in a general admission ticket to Beaulieu, which also includes entry to the National Motor Museum with its collection of more than 250 vehicles, the new-look World of Top Gear, the ancestral Montagu home of Palace House, 13th century Beaulieu Abbey and the stunning grounds and gardens. For advance tickets or more information see www.beaulieu.co.uk or call 01590 612345.