Book Launch in Portmeirion, North Wales, on May 6th 2003
Native New Yorker Catherine Nemeth Frumerman launched her book On The Trail Of The Prisoner: A Walking Guide To Portmeirion's Prisoner Sites in the Prisoner Shop, Portmeirion, Gwynedd, North Wales on Tuesday, May 6th, 2003.
On The Trail Of The Prisoner: A Walking Guide To Portmeirion's Prisoner Sites is the first-ever dedicated walking guide to sites in Portmeirion that are seen in The Prisoner television series.
News coverage follows below.
BBC Radio Wales
May 6, 2003 7:55 a.m.
Good Morning Wales show
with hosts Vaughan Roderick and Felicity Evans
Vaughan: And from judges’ wigs and prisons we go to prisoners of another sort with the launch of a new book today -- On The Trail Of The Prisoner: A Walking Guide To Portmeirion’s Prisoner Sites [about The Prisoner TV show] -- by American Cathy Nemeth Frumerman who is the author of the guide. And she’s in our Penrhyndeudraeth studio just now, down the road from Portmeirion. Good morning, Cathy.
Cathy: Good morning, Vaughan.
Vaughan: How did you get hooked?
Cathy: Oh, that was very easy. They showed The Prisoner in 1968 on Channel Two in New York, and all across America, and it was just the most beautiful series with beautiful scenery and wonderful dialogue. Very intelligent for its time, or for any time; and it just instantly grabbed me, and I was very interested in it from that moment. But my first time in Portmeirion was only in 1983. The book was conceived of by my friend Roger Goodman and the writing of it began in October 2001. And the need for it was always there. There always seemed to be something that needed to hook up Portmeirion and The Prisoner to let visitors there know where they are, what they are seeing, what happened at certain sites, because when you go there sometimes you hear people say “Is this what happened here?” “Is this where he lived?”
Vaughan: What does Robin Llywelyn and the Portmeirion people make of The Prisoner by now? Are they a bit fed up with it or are they still proud of the connection?
Cathy: Well, they have The Prisoner Shop that was refurbished a couple of years ago really beautifully. It looks like a Welsh Prisoner Shop. It has a beautiful slate floor. It’s beautifully done. I think they’re very, very proud of their heritage.
Vaughan: Now, the guide. I can vaguely remember The Prisoner but I wouldn’t really remember individual scenes. It’s a pretty niche thing, isn’t it? You have to know the series to read the guide, I guess. Do you?
Cathy: No, not at all. I think the guide might interest some people in the series. It has some very good photos in it and people might pick that up and think “Oh, this is really nice.” and then start to read about it. And then they might get hooked on the story idea and the dialogue, because there are little bits of dialogue in there; the more humorous parts of The Prisoner or something. And I think it might start a little interest even for newer fans.
Vaughan: There is often talk -- and it never seems to get much more than talk -- about a film or another series. Do you think anything will ever come, or does it just stand as is?
Cathy: I don’t think a film will happen. It’s been talked about for nearly ten years already. I think The Prisoner should just stand as it stands. As Patrick McGoohan’s vision.
Vaughan: Thank you. The Prisoner of Portmeirion.
Felicity: They should learn from The Avengers and not try to make a film of it.
Vaughan: Oh, that was awful. I thought The Prisoner was great. I remember it being…it was great. I’d hate to see it messed with.
Felicity: Yeah. It is Patrick McGoohan or nobody, I think.
May 6, 2003
TAKE A TOUR IN THE FOOTSTEPS OF THE PRISONERby Steve Bagnall
The first ever guide to North Wales locations made famous by cult TV series The Prisoner is being launched today.
On the Trail of the Prisoner - a Walking Guide to Portmeirion's The Prisoner takes fans on a step-by-step tour of the picturesque village near Penrhyndeudraeth, in Gwynedd.
Listen to just about any visitor, said American author, Catherine Nemeth Frumerman and they are likely to mention The Prisoner.
"This guide is meant to accompany you around Portmeirion like a companion conversant with the village, pointing out places of interest, reminding you of a scene, or quoting dialogue from The Prisoner," she said.
Mrs Frumerman became engrossed in the series in 1968 after watching its bizarre plots and surreal characters - a far cry from the usual TV shows of the time.
"But what especially caught and kept my attention over the years was this wonderful place in which The Prisoner himself was kept captive. And that, of course, was Portmeirion," she said.
The portable guide features a comprehensive colour map with the village's landmarks and locations featured in the series. It also includes unpublished behind-the-scenes photos taken in Portmeirion during filming.
Many scenes from the series, starring Patrick McGoohan, were filmed in Portmeirion during the summer of 1966 and early 1967.
The village was designed by Sir Clough William-Ellis and is now one of Wales' leading tourist attractions with more than 250,000 visitors every year.
"A great deal of visitors to Portmeirion are initially attracted to the village by The Prisoner's connection," said Portmeirion's managing director Robin Llywelyn.
"Along with The Prisoner shop and its permanent exhibition this informal guide will be of immense interest to any fan visiting Portmeirion."
The guide is being officially launched at 10am today at the Portmeirion Prisoner shop. Mrs Frumerman was being joined by husband Bruce, who provided prints for the book. Afterwards the author will be leading special tours around the village.
Caernarfon - Denbigh Herald
May 8, 2003
A FIRST: NEW PORTMEIRION GUIDE MAPS OUT "THE PRISONER" SITES AND SCENES
REAL LABOUR OF LOVE BY US AUTHOR
by Emyr Williams
An American who fell in love with the Italianate village of Portmeirion while spending her honeymoon there in 1983, has published the first-ever dedicated guidebook of sites and scenes made world famous by the 1960s cult TV series, The Prisoner.
It was in 1968 that Manhattan-based Catherine Nemeth Frumerman first became interested in The Prisoner after watching the series with its bizarre plots and surreal characters.
She spoke this week of how it was so amazingly different to the usual programming at the time.
"But what especially caught and kept my attention over the years was this wonderful place in which the Prisoner himself was kept captive," she added. "And that of course was Portmeirion."
At Tuesday's launch of On The Trail Of The Prisoner in the village's Prisoner shop, she said: "Listen to just about any visitor to Portmeirion village and you are likely to hear him or her mention The Prisoner.
"This guide is meant to accompany you around Portmeirion like a companion conversant with the village, pointing out places of interest, reminding you of a scene, or quoting a fragment of dialogue from The Prisoner."
The book, a PrizBiz publication, priced at £5.99, features a map of all Portmeirion's Prisoner locations and landmarks, with colour photographic illustrations and information about each site.
It also includes a hitherto unpublished collection of private behind-the-scenes photos taken in Portmeirion during the filming.
True Prisoner fans, Mrs Frumerman and her husband Bruce, who are both involved in marketing communications in America, are long standing members of the Six of One Prisoner Appreciation Society. In America, Mrs Frumerman writes occasional articles for the Welsh American monthly Ninnau.
"We both come to Portmeirion for the first time on our honeymoon in 1983, and we have been coming every year since, spending around 11 days at the hotel," she said.
"We enjoy the beautiful view of the estuary form our hotel bedroom window, and we just feel that we must come back every year, it's so lovely here. We've only been to a Prisoner Convention here once, for we prefer to come when it's more peaceful.
"As far as The Prisoner is concerned, there has been nothing like it, and you never get bored looking at the 17 episodes, of which five were partly filmed here in Portmeirion.
"We are attracted to the beauty of Portmeirion, and it was so exciting to realize that the five episodes had been filmed here, for it's such a beautiful location."
Her husband added: "We love North Wales. This whole area is really gorgeous, and it's an ideal location for rest and relaxation away from Manhattan."
Welcoming the launch of the book, Portmeirion's managing director, Robin Llywelyn, said: "Along with The Prisoner shop and its exhibitions, this informal guide will be of immense interest to any Prisoner fan visiting Portmeirion - it is an excellent piece of research and certainly fills a gap in the available information on Portmeirion and its Prisoner connections."
By Iwan Hughes
Meirionnydd & Arfon/Dwyfor Editions
May 8, 2003
GUIDEBOOK IS TOO LATE FOR THE PRISONER!
The first dedicated guidebook to the 1960s cult television series "The Prisoner" was launched this week.
On The Trail Of The Prisoner: A Walking Guide To Portmeirion's Prisoner Sites will take fans step by step around the Italianate village of Portmeirion.
Many scenes in the 17 episodes of The Prisoner, starring Patrick McGoohan, were filmed in Portmeirion in the summer of 1966 and early 1967.
The book features a comprehensive colour map to all the Prisoner locations and landmarks at Portmeirion, with colour photographic illustrations and information about each site.
It also includes a hitherto unpublished collection of private behind-the-scenes photos taken during the filming.
"Listen to just about any visitor to Portmeirion village and you are likely to hear him or her mention The Prisoner," said the guide's American author Nemeth Frumerman.
"This portable guide is meant to accompany you around Portmeirion like a companion conversant with the village, pointing out places of interest, reminding you of a scene, or quoting a fragment of dialogue from The Prisoner," she added.
Meirionnydd & Arfon/Dwyfor Editions
May 8, 2003
GUIDEBOOK IS TOO LATE FOR THE PRISONER!
The author became interested in The Prisoner in 1968 after watching the series, with its bizarre plots and surreal characters.
She remembers how it was so amazingly different to the usual TV programmes of the time.
"But what especially caught and kept my attention over the years was this wonderful place in which The Prisoner himself was kept captive, and that of course was Portmeirion," she said.
"Many visitors to Portmeirion are initially attracted to the village by The Prisoner connection," said Portmeirion's managing director Robin Llywelyn.
"Along with the Prisoner shop and its permanent exhibition, this informal guide will be of immense interest to any Prisoner fan visiting Portmeirion. It is an excellent piece of research and certainly fills a gap in the available information on Portmeirion and its Prisoner connections," he added.
BBC News Online - UK Edition
Tuesday, May 6, 2003
GUIDE BOOK FOR PRISONER FANS
Fans of the cult TV series The Prisoner can be taken step-by-step around the Italianate village where it was filmed in north Wales.
The programme starring Patrick McGoohan hit British screens in 1967 and made Portmeirion in Gwynedd world-famous.
On Tuesday a dedicated guidebook highlighting locations where the series was filmed is launched.
The village, south of Porthmadog, welcomes thousands of visitors every year and the guidebook's author Catherine Nemeth Frumerman hopes the trend will continue.
"Listen to any visitor to Portmeirion village and you are likely to hear him or her mention The Prisoner," she said.
"This portable guide is meant to accompany you around Portmeirion like a companion conversant with the village, pointing out places of interest, reminding you of a scene."
The show portrayed Patrick McGoohan, as a secret agent held among a brainwashed population held captive by a mysterious regime.
The prisoners were known only by numbers.
There were no bars or barbed wire, but massive balloons would smother anyone attempting to escape.
The series was shown in more than 60 countries throughout the world.
BBC Online, Wales - North West
BECOME THE PRISONER OF PORTMEIRION
Were you a massive fan of cult TV show The Prisoner? Did you know that the unique village of Portmeirion was used as part of the set? Find out even more about the famous show and its links to NW Wales with this new book.
On The Trail Of The Prisoner: A Walking Guide To Portmeirion's Prisoner Sites offers walkers a whole new way of exploring and enjoying Portmeirion. Fans of the 1967 TV show The Prisoner can wonder round the village, learning about the show's history in and around Portmeirion. It includes a map identifying Prisoner sites and landmarks and fresh facts about the show.
The author, Cathy Frumerman from New York, has been a frequent visitor to Portmeirion ever since she first became hooked on The Prisoner. Over the past 20 years she's come to know every inch of the unique resort, and is now sharing her knowledge of Portmeirion as a set for The Prisoner.
Cathy is currently in NW Wales to launch her book, which can be bought from the Portmeirion bookshop, or from her publisher's site www.priz.biz.
For your chance to win a copy of this book, just answer this question:
Which actor played the lead role in The Prisoner?
Competition open until May 30. 2003. Winner is announced after May 30 on the BBC On-Line site.
by Lew Stringer
by Lew Stringer
Native New Yorker Catherine Frumerman was in the village on Tuesday May 6th for the official launch of her book, "On the Trail of The Prisoner: A Walking Guide to Portmeirion's Prisoner Sites".
The book signing, at the Prisoner Shop, Portmeirion, was a huge success for Catherine, accompanied by her husband Bruce Frumerman, who was the photographer of the numerous colour images in the book, and the publisher Roger Goodman. The media also showed great interest in the launch, with the author interviewed by BBC TV, BBC radio and the Daily Post. "We lost track of how many books were actually sold", said Roger on the alt.tv.prisoner newsgroup, "because people were returning for Cathy to sign books which they had already bought earlier in the day or week, but sales are now well into three figures. It is only a matter of time before the thousandth copy is sold".
Copies can be ordered from the publisher at Priz.biz, and a more detailed coverage of the book appears on our new REVIEWS [also on this site] page.
For world-wide mail order purchase of On The Trail Of The Prisoner and other Prisoner items, visit www.priz.biz
Read an excerpt from the book
# # #