Firm, The (1988)

Date: 1988
Director: Alan Clarke
Production Company: British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC)

Stars: Gary Oldman, Lesley Manville, Phil Davis, Charles Lawson
Location(s): London, West Midlands

Region(s): ,


A story about rival gangs of violent football supporters and how one man wants to see them team together for the European Championships of 1988.

Additional Information:

Screen captures uploaded by Phil Wilkinson from source material provided by John Tunstill

A BBC Television drama

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Estate agent Clive 'Bex' Bissell (Gary Oldman) takes prospective buyers to a property. Stuart Beattie pinpoints this as Kidbrooke Grove, London SE3 (RL)

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The couple (Unidentified and James Woolley) listen to Bissell's tongue in cheek sales patter. Kidbrooke Grove, London SE3 once again, identified by Stuart. (RL)

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Bissell shows the pair to the front door whilst admitting that the house is the best that he's ever seen. Further along Kidbrooke Grove says Stuart. (RL)

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"If this house don't sell itself, I'm a monkey's uncle". As Identified by Stuart Beattie this property is in Kidbrooke Grove, London SE3. Why shouldn't it sell, it was designed by British architect, Sir Reginald Blomfield (Menin Gate). (RL)

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Bissell, also leader of the 'Inter City Crew', walks away from the house to give the couple time to look round. Another property in Kidbrooke Grove as identified by Stuart. (RL)

During a football match in which Bissell is playing, Yeti (Philip Davis) drives his car across the pitch.

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Paul Jupp reveals the location as Blackheath, SE London and All Saints Church. (RL)

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Whilst the leader of 'The Buccaneers' wreaks havoc on the pitch, Bissell's car is vandalised by Yeti's crew. Paul Jupp identifies this as Blackheath, SE London. (RL)

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As he looks at Bissell's car, Nunk (Patrick Murray) remarks that 'this has transgressed the unwritten law, this has'. David Bunyan advises that this is Arnott Close off Titmuss Avenue, Thamesmead SE28.

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Bissell asks Dominic if he can do anything with the scratches! Arnott Close off Titmuss Avenue located by David.

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J.T. (Steve Sweeney) listens as their leader tells the lads that he has the problem 'all in hand'. Arnott Close off Titmuss Avenue found by David Bunyan.

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Dominic (Jay Simpson) stares at the graffitied car as Simon (Nick Dunning) gets in with 'Bex'. David Bunyan confirms that this is facing south-west on Arnott Close SE28.

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The rest of the team watch as Bissell drives away in his ruined car. David located Arnott Close with Titmuss Avenue passing over the background bridge. London SE28.

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Trigger (Charles Lawson) doesn't understand Bissell's reluctance to take revenge. Arnott Close with Simon Court in the background. Identified by David Bunyan.

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The boys return to the bar. The Wildflower public house on Arnott Close is now a religious centre. Information from David.

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Bissell's dad, Bill, watches as his son surveys the damage. Mallard Path in Greenwich SE28.

Bex tries turpentine to clean the paintwork with no success.

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One from the archives: taken a few years ago. SJ

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Bill (Dave Atkins) suggests remedies for the damage. Mallard Path, Greenwich SE28 confirmed by Jamie Davis.

Yeti and his followers arrive at The Tower Thistle Hotel to meet with the 'Inter City Crew' and Oboe's 'firm' from Birmingham.

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St Katharine's Way in London E1. (PW)

Inside the hotel, Bissell tries to persuade his rivals to join him in forming a national 'firm'.

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The same, more tropical,location now. (PW)

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Bissell takes a cab to his parent's house after Oboe refuses to join up. Nightingale Vale in the Royal Borough of Greenwich, London SE18. Information from Jamie Davies.

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The 'ICC' have threatened a visit to Oboe and his gang in Birmingham. Jamie Davis identifies this as Nightingale Vale at the junction with Fennell Street in London SE18.

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The camera follows the outwardly respectable Bissell along the street. Fennel Street in Woolwich SE18 located by Jamie.

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Once inside the house, Bissell visits his old room and psyches himself up for the 'rumble'. Fennell Street in SE18 found by Jamie Davis.

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On the day of the fight, Beef (Nicholas Hewetson) is collected by Simon, Billy and J.T.. Kidbrooke Grove, London SE3 just across the road from the one in image Capture 5 as identified by Stuart.

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Simon drives them off to Birmingham in his BMW from Kidbrooke Grove, London SE3 as identified by Stuart once again. (RL)

Dominic and Aitch (William Vanderpuye) make their way to the station. Grays Inn Road in London WC1.

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Same place, more trees. (PW)

The pair meet up with Trigger.

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Gray's Inn Road, London. (PW)

Whilst Dominic goes to buy a newspaper, Trigger asks Aitch why he has been brought along. Gray's Inn Road.

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The background buildings in the screen capture are hiding behind the trees. (PW)

The ex soldier believes that young Dominic will run as soon as the ruck starts.

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Grays Inn Road looking towards Kings Cross station. (PW)

As the group assembles, Yusef (Terry Sue Patt) runs across to to them after skipping school. Euston Road, NW1.

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The same location now. (PW)

Bissell appears after buying first class rail tickets for them all.

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Euston Road with St. Pancras station in the background. (PW)

'The ICC' make their way across to the station and the train to Birmingham.

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Facing Kings Cross station on Euston Road, London NW1. (PW)

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Simon, Beef, J.T. and Billy (Steve McFadden) stop off at a motorway service area for a mid journey break. Unknown location.

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The group enter the building unaware that Yeti and his crew have followed.

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Simon comes out to see the smashed up BMW in flames.

Bissell's group walk past The Toreador public house on Edgbaston Street in Birmingham, West Midlands.

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The 60's pub has gone to be replaced with an 00's department store. (PW)

The camera tracks the gang as they pass the entrance of the Bull Ring Shopping Centre on Edgbaston Street, Birmingham.

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The whole area has been redeveloped. (PW)

As they turn into the rendezvous point, Bissell wonders where Simon is. Taken from inside the Bull Ring Shopping Centre service area looking out to the junction of Edgbaston Street and Pershore Street.

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The same redeveloped junction now. The service area still exists but is usually secured closed. (PW)

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Oboe and his boys arrive and the fighting begins. This is inside the shopping centre service area and remains as it was when filming took place.

Oboe (Andrew Wilde) and Sully leave after cornering 15 year old Yusef and cutting his face. Looking out of the entrance of the old Bull Ring Bus Station onto Dudley Street.

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From a similar viewpoint now with, what was, The Market Hotel on the right. The Bus Station closed some years ago. (PW)

Badly injured, Yusef makes his way to find the others.

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Facing Pershore Street at the junction of Dudley Street and Edgbaston Street in Birmingham, West Midlands. (PW)

Aitch and Dominic are found along the street.

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Edgbaston Street, Birmingham. (PW)

After seeing the cut, Aitch tells Yusef to go to hospital before he and Dominic leave the scene. Edgbaston Street, Birmingham looking towards Dudley Street and the elevated Smallbrook Queensway.

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The same location now. (PW)

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Snowy (Robbie Gee) and Bissell run away after knifing Oboe at his house. Unidentified location.

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Bissell calls on Simon at home. Unknown location.

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The two look over the burnt out BMW as Bex tells Simon to keep Saturday free for an attack on Yeti.

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After Simon says that he wants no more of the violence, Bissell departs in his regular cab.

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Bissell heads to see Yusef, who also says that he won't be able to make Saturday. Jamie Davis advises that the flats are situated on Saunders Way, Thamesmead, London SE28.

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Sue Bissell (Lesley Manville) opens the door to the police who arrive with a warrant to search the premises. Jamie locates this as Mallard Path in SE28.

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It's Saturday and Stu (Hepburn Harrison-Graham) makes his way to report to Yeti after the ICC can't be found. Jamie tells us that the garage is on Whitehorse Lane SE25.

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The camera follows Stu as he walks towards the staff entrance of the football ground. Jamie found Selhurst Park stadium off Whitehorse Lane, London SE25.

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Other 'Buccaneers' come into view. Selhurst Park stadium in South Norwood, Croydon SE25.

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Yeti surmises that Bissell and his crew are inside the ground. Crystal Palace's Selhurst Park stadium identified by Jamie Davis.

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Stu, Lomax, Sully (Dan Hildebrand) and Yeti make their way to the stands. Outside Selhurst Park stadium off Whitehorse Lane located by Jamie.

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Lomax (Kevin Allen) can't see them inside the ground and they all agree that Bexy has 'bottled out'. Selhurst Park stadium, the home of Crystal Palace. Identification by Jamie Davis.

After the match, the ICC group ready themselves for the raid on Yeti and his gang. Wellington Row facing Durant Street, London E2.

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Peter found that the wall has grown into a block of apartments.

Bissell leads his crew towards the pub where The Buccaneers are drinking. Looking east on Wellington Row in Tower Hamlets.

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The same location from Peter showing more of the development on the left side of the road.

The camera follows. Wellington Row E2.

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From a similar point of view by Peter.

The ICC draw near as, inside the pub, The Buccaneers celebrate their victory over Bissell. The Queen Victoria public house on Wellington Row in London E2.

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Peter captured the former pub.

Bissell breaks into a run and the ICC storm the pub. Outside the Queen Victoria pub on Wellington Row looking across Barnet Grove at the Prince of Wales public house. Both pubs are now closed.

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The same corner in this comparison by Peter.

Customers run from the bar as the attack begins. The Prince of Wales at the junction of Wellington Row and Barnet Grove in E2.

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Peter took this modern view.

Bissell drags Yeti outside and continues to beat him. Outside the Prince of Wales pub facing east along Wellington Row.

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No beatings on the day when Peter visited.

Bex screams in triumph before returning inside. Looking along Barnet Grove to the corner of Quilter Street.

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Peter took this image of the spot now.

Yeti shoots Bex. The now closed Prince of Wales on the corner of Wellington Row and Barnet Grove in London E2.

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Doors firmly closed now. Picture by Peter.