Dad’s Army costumer designer picks out jacket worn by Arthur Lowe from 1m items at a fancy dress store


A COSTUME designer selected a “Captain Mainwaring” jacket from among one million items at a fancy dress store – and discovered it was last worn by Arthur Lowe.

Howard Burden, who is working on a TV remake of the 70s comedy classic Dad’s Army, went searching for clothing in a celebrated London fancy dress store.

Angels Fancy Dress in London have more than 1,000,000 hanging items to choose from and Howard found a tweed jacket suitable for Captain Mainwaring in civilian mode.

So the award-winning designer was astonished when he examined the label and found the name Arthur Lowe, the actor who played Mainwaring in the original series.

The unbelievable coincidence had odds of over one in a million

Above the name was printed “Morris Angel and Son Ltd” and “119 Shaftesbury Avenue”.

Kevin McNally, who is playing Mainwaring in the Gold remake, tweeted a picture of the remarkable find.

McNally wrote: “For the recording of our final Dad’s Army on Friday our designer Howard has to rush up to Angels to get me a civilian Mr Mainwaring jacket.

McNally posted the extraordinary discovery to Twitter

“He grabbed the first one that he thought would fit. When we looked in the pocket… look who’s the last person it was rented to…”

The find is all the more remarkable because Dad’s Army was broadcast between 1969 and 1977, meaning the jacket could have been undisturbed on its hangar for over 41 years. Lowe himself died in 1982.

Lorraine Kelly was among those to respond, writing: “‘Twas meant to be! What a lucky omen.”

ErburyOldBoy said: “Who do you think you are kidding…”

Angels Fancy Dress is said to have 10 miles worth of hanging rails in their warehouse

BraxM added: “It’s all meant to be, Kevin.”

KymRBrosnan wrote: “No way! That’s eerie. He’s giving you his approval.”

GaryWales said: “As it should be. Your perfect homage is complete.”

Sidavis wrote: “Are you sure it’s not an original BBC costume? Angels got a lot of old BBC costumes so it’s quite possible.”

And Marina_georgiou said: “I love things like that! Mr Lowe is indeed with you.”

The discovery has excited many Dad’s Army fans including presenter Lorraine Kelly

Angels Fancy Dress today agreed it was an “incredible” find.

A spokesman said: “We have over one million hanging items on our 10 miles worth of hanging rails. It is testament to Howard [Burden] that he was able to pick out the perfect jacket.

“What makes it more remarkable is that the last thing the designers look at is the label. All they do is check the style and size of the jacket. It’s incredible.”

McNally is part of an ensemble cast which is remaking three episodes from series two of Dad’s Army which have either been lost or destroyed.

Kevin McNally is playing Captain Mainwaring in Dad’s Army Lost Episodes

The show is called Dad’s Army Lost Episodes and will celebrate the instalments which are believed to have not been broadcasted since 1969.

The episodes that will be aired are ‘A Stripe for Frazer’, ‘The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Walker’ and ‘Under Fire’ and will use the orginal scripts.

Gold are remaking the “lost” episodes of the comedy, which Angels supplied with costumes in the 60s and 70s.

In 2007, Angels donated Captain Mainwaring’s army jacket to be auctioned for charity, raising £3,120.