Cell Block H Custom Made Cell block H “Officers Jacket” signed by Joy Westmore who played Officer Joyce Barry with full COA
I had a client approach me from Ireland asking if I had any Cell block H memorabilia, the show ended so long ago there is not a great deal left and what is left is not for sale. I told him that I could have the Officers Jacket custom made and we would find a cast member from the show to sign it. This took some planning and a lot of time as this was our first Cell block h project but I was able to make it happen and the result was amazing. I was able to track down the costume maker who use to work in the wardrobe department on the original show, she did an amazing job. There were many setbacks as the Jacket was difficult to replicate but the end result was amazing. Joy Westmore who played Officer Barry (Pringle) happily signed this jacket for us, she is nearly 90 years old and has not signed anything “Prisoner” related for a long time. We had another one made.
Rare Prisoner Memorabilia
- Jacket is signed by Joy Westmore who played Joyce Barry/Pringle
- Frame measures at 1242mm Width and 843mm Height
- Comes with Certificate of Authenticity
- Item ships affixed with serial-numbered tamper proof hologram sticker
- Photo of Joy signing the jacket
- Custom frame with Custom background made by MJB Memorabilia ready to hang
- Joy Inscribed Joyce Barry on the Jacket
Message me now for all your custom memorabilia needs.
A little about Cell Block H
Prisoner (known in the UK and US as Prisoner: Cell Block H) is an Australian television soap opera, created by Reg Watson, which broadcast on Network Ten from 1979 to 1986, lasting eight seasons and 692 episodes, the series was produced by the Grundy Organisation and was filmed at the then Network Ten Melbourne Studios at Nunawading and on location.
It follows the lives of the prisoners and staff of the fictional high-security wing of a women’s prison, called “H Division” within “The Wentworth Detention Centre”, which was set in a fictional suburb called “Wentworth” in Melbourne, Victoria, numerous scenes also took place outside the compound exploring the lives of the inmates and staff outside of the centre, and in particular “Driscoll House”, a half-way house where inmates were housed after being released, or neighbouring correction institutions like “Barnhurst” and “Blackmoor”.
The series gained a positive reception. Initially conceived as a stand-alone miniseries of 16 episodes, its popularity meant it was developed into an ongoing series. It has since endured worldwide, acquiring cult classic status, particularly for its somewhat outrageous acting and plotlines. Its cultural impact has inspired several contemporary adaptations, including the equally-successful series Wentworth.
Prisoner was created by Reg Watson, who had produced the British soap opera Crossroads from 1964 to 1973 and would create Australian soaps The Young Doctors, Sons and Daughters and Neighbours. Inspired by the British television drama Within These Walls, the show was initially conceived as a 16-episode series, with a pilot episode bearing the working title “Women Behind Bars”.[nb 2] Its storylines focused on the lives of the prisoners and, to a lesser extent, the officers and other prison staff. When the initial episodes met an enthusiastic reception, it was felt that Prisoner could be developed into an ongoing soap opera. The early storylines were developed and expanded, with assistance from the Corrective Services Department.
The show’s themes, often radical, included feminism, homosexuality and social reform. Prisoner began in early 1979 with the advertising slogan, “If you think prison is hell for a man, imagine what it’s like for a woman”. The series examined how women dealt with incarceration and separation from their families, and the common phenomenon of released inmates re-offending. Within the prison, major themes were interpersonal relationships, power struggles, friendships and rivalries. The prisoners became a surrogate family, with self-styled “Queen Bea”, Bea Smith and the elderly “Mum” (Jeanette) Brooks emerging as central matriarch figures. Several lesbian characters were introduced on the show, including prisoners Franky Doyle (played by Carol Burns) and Judy Bryant (played by Betty Bobbitt), as well as corrupt and sinister officer Joan Ferguson (Maggie Kirkpatrick).
Prisoner premiered in Australia on 27 February 1979.[nb 4] Its success prompted the producers to extend the series, first from 16 to 20 episodes and then indefinitely. The production schedule increased from one to two hour-long episodes per week; Carol Burns left the show after 20 episodes, feeling that she could not continue playing Franky Doyle with the tighter schedule. Her storyline, sees her as an escapee from Wentworth with fellow inmate Doreen Anderson and after being on the run for three weeks, she is shot dead by an officer
New story arcs were introduced. Karen Travers appealed against her sentence and was eventually released, allowing her to resume her relationship with Greg Miller and becoming involved in prison reform. As original characters began leaving the series (Mum Brooks, Lynn Warner, Karen and Greg appeared beyond the initial sixteen episodes, but most had left by the end of the 1979 season; Greg left in early 1980), new characters arrived: hulking husband-beater Monica Ferguson (Lesley Baker), career criminal Noeline Bourke (Jude Kuring), troubled murdereress Roslyn Coulson (Sigrid Thornton) and imprisoned mother Pat O’Connell (Monica Maughan), in addition to shorter-term inmates with brief storylines. Prostitute Chrissie Latham, a minor character in the early episodes, returned in a more central antagonistic role and a male deputy governor, Jim Fletcher (Gerard Maguire), joined the female-dominated cast.
Ratings had been declining for some time, and when they continued to fall in 1986, Network Ten decided in July not to renew the series. Production ended on 5 September, and the final episode aired in Melbourne on 11 December 1986.[nb 5] The producers had several weeks’ notice that the series was ending, enabling them to construct strong concluding storylines (including the ultimate defeat of Joan “the Freak” Ferguson). Prisoner‘s final episodes dealt with the redemption of the misunderstood Kath Maxwell and concluded the ongoing dynamic between Rita Connors (played by Glenda Linscott) and Joan Ferguson (Maggie Kirkpatrick)