Neighbours favourites Madge and Harold Bishop will return to the show to celebrate the soap’s 30th anniversary next year.
Ian Smith and Anne Charleston, better known as Harold and Madge Bishop, will be reunited for the Australian soap’s 30th birthday. How, why and in what form the acting duo will reappear on Ramsay Street (the character of Madge died in 2001) is shrouded in secrecy by the show’s producers.
Madge first appeared in the soap in 1986 as the wife of Fred Mitchell and the mother of Charlene, played by superstar-in-the-making Kylie Minogue. In 1988 after Madge’s marriage failed, she married her school sweet heart Harold Bishop and thus began one of the show’s most endearing partnerships.
“It was an immediate yes when I was invited to return for the 30th anniversary, I wouldn’t have missed it and I’m thrilled with the way their story unfolds,” said Charleston, who relocated to Melbourne last year after living in Ireland for the past decade.
Harold arrived in Ramsay Street in 1987 but during a walk along a coastal path in 1991 he was swept out to sea. Five years later he reappeared suffering from amnesia. When his memory later returned, he and Madge renewed their wedding vows. Life was blissful for the couple until Madge died of cancer in 2001.
“I spent half my working life on Neighbours and so it’s lovely to be back with Anne and all the cast and crew, “ said Smith who retired from Neighbours in 2009.
Smith and Charleston are currently filming their episodes at the show’s Melbourne studios and are the first of a number of past cast members returning for the 30th anniversary to be announced.
It was reported earlier this year that Kylie Minogue may also appear in the show’s anniversary celebrations.