63 Up – ITV

The seven-year-olds originally feature in the Seven Up series in 1964 are now 
in their 60s as the documentary returns on ITV

The seven-year-olds originally feature in the Seven Up series in 1964 are now 
in their 60s as the documentary returns on ITV

‘Give me a child for the first seven years and I will give you the man.’

Inspired by this old Jesuit saying, Michael Apted’s groundbreaking Up documentary began in 1964 with a group of seven-year-olds from diverse backgrounds.

Michael has revisited them every seven years, and this series (continuing tomorrow and Thursday) catches up with 11 of the original 14, now turning 63.

London cabbie Tony Walker has opted for a slower pace of life after a health scare, solicitor Andrew is pondering retirement and university administrator Sue jokes she’s ‘still in the longest engagement known to man’.

A poignant update, as participants discuss their health-related hopes and fears.

TV Times rating *****

Tony aged seven in 1964

Here, Tony tells TV Times how the series has changed him…

So Tony, what’s happened since we last saw you in 56 Up?

Seven years goes by so quickly! 
My wife, Debbie, and I decided to pack up and leave Spain, and we’re now in a lovely village in Epping Forest, surrounded by nature.

I’m less stressed and more settled. In fact, life couldn’t be better!

How are you and Debbie now?

My wife and I have been through turbulent times on screen. You’ll remember that she brought up an indiscretion I’d had in 42 Up? I had to hold my hands up at the time and tell the truth.

We have rows like anyone else, but I’d say we’re stronger than ever.

Aw, I’m getting sentimental…

Do you look forward 
to filming the show?

It’s been quite cathartic for me and I’ve always trusted Michael Apted 100 per cent. I forget about the cameras and feel as though I’m just talking to him, so there’s no holding back.

It’s also made you a celebrity!

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I get recognised by customers in my cab all the time! I picked up John Cleese recently and he knew all about me.

I won’t lie, I don’t mind the limelight, but what 
the show has taught me more 
than anything
is humility.

The series is inspired by the old saying ‘Give me the child for the first seven years and I will show you the man’. Is it true for you?

If you look at me at seven and look at me now, almost a pensioner, I’m the same happy-go-lucky cheeky chappy, who’s got an answer for everything. I haven’t changed!