What Zammo did next: Lee MacDonald on life after Grange Hill
Going to meet Lee MacDonald feels more like a reunion with an old schoolmate than an interview. He is an old schoolmate not just to me but to a generation. Actually, I’m a bit older: my gang was Tucker Jenkins, Trisha Yates, Tommy Watson and Benny Green. But my brother is MacDonald’s – Zammo McGuire’s – age, so he was round our house. And then, when his Big Storyline happened, he was round pretty much everyone’s house. Including the then US president’s.
MacDonald played Zammo in Phil Redmond’s children’s drama Grange Hill for six years in the 80s. The epitome of the cheeky chappie, Zammo was a bruiser and charmer; a bit rough around the edges and often in trouble for fighting or letting off stink bombs. Never malicious, mind, and with lovely blue eyes. Then he became a heroin addict, remember? Slumped in the toilet, with a glazed, out-of-it look. That was some storyline for a kids’ TV show. He became the face of an anti-drug campaign. Look, smack can get anyone – even nice Zammo. Just Say No.Continue reading...