It's Tony time: Baldrick embraces Ballarat

BALLARAT history buff Jan White said she wouldn't have met British TV personality Sir Tony Robinson if it wasn't for her daughter.

"She was studying her masters in history at Melbourne University when she was contacted by the (executive producer)," Ms White said.

Ms White said her daughter then asked her to gather a group of friends for the Tony Robinson: Tour of Duty documentary that is being filmed in Ballarat this week.

The 10-part documentary series explores the war stories of Australians and New Zealanders and will screen on the History Channel next year.

Yesterday Sir Tony spoke to Ballarat locals about the significance of the Sturt Street statue of Harold Edward "Pompey" Elliot.

The Gallipoli soldier, turned solicitor and senator, left a impression on the Ballarat community after he died in 1931.

Ms White's friend Nancy Higgins said she was familiar of Pompey's story and was a huge fan of Sir Tony.

"We all learn a lot when we're giggling with Tony," she said.

Ms Higgins, who lives in Gordon, said she came along to learn more about the local history.

"Pompey was a local man that achieved a lot for returned servicemen," she said.

Passerby Barry Griffiths said he was having lunch on Sturt Street when he recognised his idol from across the road.

"I thought, that's Baldrick (from Blackadder)...I'm a huge fan," he said.

On Saturday, residents with interesting war memorabilia are invited to attend a community event on the final day of filming at Lake Wendouree.

Rotary will host a sausage sizzle at the Australian Ex-Prisoners of War Memorial at Lake Wendouree between 12.30pm and 5.30pm.

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