The number 17 is woven throughout Peter Cook's play script. Here are some of the references to it, some possible reasons behind his obsession with the number, and some... coincidences.
According to the sleevenotes, the action of the play takes place on the 17th of April.
Mr Blint's first words to the others are 'I make it around 10.17'
Blint says his bath takes 11 minutes to fill, and 6 to empty. 11+6=17.
Lulu says she is 34 (twice 17). Blint replies 'naturally.'
The attic is 'exactly 17 points south west of the Pyramids.'
Near the end, Blint says the time is 'six minutes past 11'.
Blint asks them to lead him in with a count of 17.
Pepperman gives his (Peckham?) phone number or Ladbrokes account number as PEC2528. 2+5+2+8=17. (Thanks, Dermot!).
The original catalogue number of the record was CONS17.
Peter Cook was born on the 17th of November 1937 - coincidence? I don't
think so... (and on a personal note, my own son Henry was born on the
17th of November. Naturally.)
In 1994 BBC Radio 3 broadcast a series of five interviews Chris Morris did with Peter Cook playing the part of Sir Arthur Streeb-Greebling, called Why Bother? In episode 3, Cook describes Jesus having to practice resurrection many times before He got the hang of it, and having to dispose of seventeen other Christs.
In the 1960s, Kevin Godley played in a Manchester band called 'Group 17'.
The photo above is of Thierry Dubois on his up-turned yacht, 900 miles off Antarctica (6th Jan 1997) - 'an area feared by every sailor' according to the London Daily Telegraph newspaper. Bad weather hampered his rescue. His boat clearly has the number 17 on it. Bear in mind the song 'Sailor' on the album that goes 'Sailor, I love you, but you only love the sea', the general theme of weather in the album and the similarity with the booklet picture at the foot of the discography... Coincidence?
A CD copy of Consequences was sold at auction on www.ebay.com for $112.50. There were 17 bidders.
In the 1960s, Peter Cook and his first wife Wendy lived at Number 17 Church Row in Hampstead, London.