School Days: 1985-1989

Move over Arthur Daley - a young pretender threatens your crown! No sooner had Pogo Patterson left the building than Gonch - another would-be entrepreneur - filled his shoes at Grange Hill. From the moment he arrived Gonch spent every spare moment dreaming up all kinds of money-making schemes which he hoped would make his fortune. Be it toast bars, computer dating or taking bets on the school fun run, there was always something on the go.
Gonch Gardner

Unfortunately Gonch's scams failed more often than not, and he'd regularly incur battle scars from irate punters like Mauler McCaul. But Gonch remained ever-optimistic and never let failure defeat him. Not surprisingly, Gonch oozed confidence with the air of a used car salesman. He excelled in maths and was academically very capable; however his sense of mischief often got him into trouble. Almost everything Gonch did had an ulterior (enterprising) motive. In later years he became something of a ladies' man; even managing to snare school brainbox Mandy Freemont; but this did nothing to dampen his wheeler-dealer enthusiasm.

TOO BUSY FOR THE LADIES THEN? No chance. Gonch's romance with Ronnie Birtles surprised classmates but fizzled out as the thought of megabucks loomed. When Gonch pursued Mandy Freemont it was originally for her brain power, but they fell for each other and were a great match.

  Series 8 On his first day, Gonch crosses swords with Hollo and they plan a fight after school. However, they instead resolve their difference and become sidekicks. Gonch's first enterprise is a lunchtime video club. While he enjoys a swim, Gonch and Hollo steal Bronson's toupee. They bug the staffroom with their walkman - exposing Gripper Stebson as the school thief.

Series 9 Gonch buys a toaster and sets up a breaktime toast bar enterprise in the playground. The staff can't work out why everyone's eating toast - until Mr Griffiths finds the toaster. At the end of term fun run Gonch runs a book - and realises Ronnie's flutter could leave him £100 out of pocket!

Series 10 Hollo feels left out when Gonch starts dating Ronnie. She soon loses interest especially on the canal trip. The lads scare Trev witless as the basement ghost! Once again, Gonch's book on the cricket match goes pear-shaped.

Series 11 Gonch targets the first years offering guided tours of the school! He ropes Ziggy and Robbie into various other enterprises including PE kit hire and babysitting. Gonch provides a comforting shoulder for Ronnie after her shoplifting ordeal.

Series 12 Gonch thinks he'll strike it rich with a homework enterprise. He chats up Mandy Freemont - the brainiest girl in the school - hoping she'll share her wisdom. Soon they fall for each other; Mandy is shocked when Gonch confesses but they stay together. Gonch's computer dating scam pairs Mauler off with Big Tel!

ASSOCIATES: Hollo Holloway, Ziggy Greaves, Robbie Wright, Mauler McCaul, Ronnie Birtles, Big Tel, Mandy Freemont.

CURRENT WHEREABOUTS: Running a chain of car dealers?

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Series 8   Series 9   Series 10   Series 11   Series 12

Laxo Archer
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