Joan Mavis Trotter (Nee Hollins) was an unseen cha
Ofah joan trotter in rock and chips

Joan Mavis Trotter.

racter in Only Fools And Horses, having died in 1964, 17 years before the series began. She died of an alcohol related illness due to her sham marriage to Reg Trotter and the death of her secret lover Freddie "The Frog" Robdal. However she was a main character in the Only Fools And Horses prequel Rock And Chips. She was the long suffering mother of Derek "Del Boy" Trotter and Rodney Trotter and wife of Reg of course. In Rock And Chips Joan was played by Kellie Bright, now playing Linda Carter in fellow London based TV show EastEnders.




Joan Mavis Hollins
Ofah young joan

Joan c1935.

was born in Clapham, London in 10 July 1925. Her parents were Derek Hollins and Mavis Hollins. She was given Mavis as a middle name after her mother's first name. Joan was an only child. Joan moved to Peckham, London, SE15. Joan met local scoundrel Reg Trotter in 1944 and she fell pregnant soon after. In 12 July 1945, she gave birth to a son Derek Edward Trotter and married Reg in 1947.


In 1960, Joan Trotter had been married to Reg for 13 years a
Ofah joan trotter

Joan Mavis Trotter, as seen in "Rock And Chips".

nd was going through a tough time. She worked as a ice cream maid at a local theatre and often got pervy looks from Ernie Rayner, her boss. He later promoted her.

In March 1960, she was friendly with Freddie "The Frog" Robdal, a friend of Reg's. Freddie was a gentleman safecracker and a frogman. Joan had a one night stand with Freddie when Reg was on a job in Kent. Joan found she was pregnant and in November 1960, she gave birth to a son Rodney Charlton Trotter at their new flat in Sir Walter Raleigh House, Nyrere Estate, Peckham, London, SE15. Freddie wondered if he was the father. Joan was friends with Irene "Reenie" Turpin.

In June 1962, Joan forced Del to go back to school after his engagement to Barbara Bird ended in disaster. When Del got eight A's (which all stood for "Absent") due to skipping his O-level school exams to flog Tom Jones LP's at the market, Joan was not very happy. Then, Reg called Del a disappointment, and Del beat Reg senseless in front of Joan, Grandad, Violet, and baby Rodney. Joan and Rodney were both crying, while Grandad tried to stop the fight, but Del wouldn't stop, because he was rightfully giving Reg what he deserved for every single one of Joan's tears and every black eye she'd try to hide behind her sunglasses. Reg was sent to hospital for a few days, while Del just vanished. A few days later, Joan got a telephone call from Del, who was in Brighton to clear his head, but eventually returned home to apologise to both his parents for his actions. But at the same time, Joan felt comfortable that Reg would never hit her, Del, or Rodney ever again.

In August 1963, Freddie and a gang stole some gold from the vaults of a bank in the city. Freddie got away but the others got caught. Freddie then hid the gold away. He then left it to Joan in his will. He then died in an accident one month later before he could retrieve the gold. Upon hearing of Freddie's death, Joan started drinking heavily, staying out late, and having more fights with Reg. After sobering up, Joan became sick soon after and needed nursing, her illness was probably alcohol related.

Death in 1964Edit

On her deathbed, Joan told her friend Reenie that she had been left some gold by Freddie but no one knew where he hid it as he had died recently, or her boys would be set for life.

Joan also told older son Del to look after Rodney and gave him a lot of advice, something Rodney would later describe as "nothing but rabbiting" on her death bed. Joan died on the 12th March 1964 at St Mary's Hospice, Peckham, London after a long illness. She was 38 years old. Del Boy was 18 and Rodney was just 3.

Joan was buried in Peckham Cemetery and a few months after her death, Del ordered a huge fibreglass monument. At the same time, Reg walked out on the family one day when Del was at work.

Rodney grew up with very few memories of his mother.

Joan's legacyEdit

In 1965, Reenie Turpin moved from London to Portsmouth. Joan's aunt Rose moved to Clacton, Essex but then moved on after that.

Del bought Rodney up after Joan died and Reg absconded. Their grandfather was too useless to help out. As Rodney got older, Del wondered if he and Rodney may only be half brothers due to Rodney being tall for his age. Del wondered if they had different fathers as Del knew Joan was going through a hard time when she fell pregnant with Rodney, and was friendly with other men.

When Rodney was an adult, Del was always pointing out to Rodney about how much he did for him. Also Del would use the passive aggressive line of "Mum said to me on her deathbed" whenever Del tried to have power over his brother.

Memorable infoEdit

  • Born: 10th July 1925
  • Died: 12th March 1964
  • Full Name: Joan Mavis Trotter (Nee Hollins)
  • Occupation: Theatre assistant (1960), Registry Office cleaner (1963), Housewife (1945-1964)


In Rock And Chips episode 1 of the same title, set in 1960, Joan is filling in the application form for a flat in the newly built Sir Walter Raleigh House, Nyrere Estate, Peckham, London, SE15 and she says her place of birth is Clapham.

Joan's maiden surname was never explicitly stated in the show but in The Second Time Around (29th September 1981), Aunty Rose in Clacton, Essex said Joanie Hollins, and it seems to ring a bell with Del and Rodney, until Rose said she married a Jamaican fella. In The Bible Of Peckham Volume 2, the Who's Who of OFAH characters gives Joan's maiden surname as Hollins. Also the 2016 book The Peckham Archives says her maiden name is Hollins and her parents were Derek Hollins and Mavis Hollins (Nee Stubbs), hence why Del Trotter was named Derek, after his maternal grandfather.

The cause of Joan's death was never stated in the series but hinted at in 3 episodes - in The Miracle Of Peckham (7th September 1986) Del said she died in the hospice, in The Frog's Legacy (25th December 1987), Reenie said she visited Joan in the hospice, and in Yuppy Love (8th January 1989), Del said her health let her down. This indicates Joan suffered from a terminal illness,. It was very likely alcohol related as according to Del's 2015 autobiography He Who Dares, Joan begun drinking heavy when Freddie The Frog died. She may have had cirrhosis of the liver, or alchohol poisoning which caused damage to her liver.