A stellar cast of much-loved British actors have started filming a new six-part BBC1 comedy series, Grey Mates

Starring Russ Abbot, Stephanie Beacham, Philip Jackson, James Smith, Alison Steadman, June Whitfield and Paula Wilcox, Grey Mates follows the ups and downs of three couples living in Thurnemouth – ‘Norfolk’s only West facing resort’.

Alan (Philip Jackson from Poirot) and Joyce (Alison Steadman) are coming at retirement from very different directions: Alan wants to slow down, Joyce wants to speed up. Alan tries to avoid as many of Joyce’s social commitments as possible, but downsizing to a bungalow has meant there are fewer places to hide.

John (Russ Abbot) and Maureen (Stephanie Beacham), live in their gadget-filled dream house, adventurous in every aspect, including the bedroom. For them, 60 is the new 40. However, there’s a reminder of what’s around the corner with Maureen’s ever-present mum Joan (June Whitfield).

Finally, there’s Trevor (James Smith, The Thick Of It) and Carol (Paula Wilcox) who’ve got non-communication down to such a fine art that if Trevor spent a weekend away, Carol might not even notice. Thiryy years of living in each other’s pockets have shown the benefits and drawbacks staying friends over the decades…

Guest stars set to appear during the series include Dudley Sutton (Emmerdale, Lovejoy), Nigel Planer, Marian McLoughlin (Doctors) and George Layton.

Grey Mates will screen on BBC1 later this year.