1 9 7 8 (UK)
6 x 30 minute episodes
This Friday night anthology series of six half-hour plays from BBC North West premiered on 14 April 1978 with ‘Pennine Man’, set in Stalybridge and starring Bryan Pringle as Kenneth McGrath (known to his friends as Kim), a middle-aged scoutmaster cracking up under the strain of his personal and domestic frustrations. The cast included Nona WIlliams. Harry Markham and Gerry Cowan.
‘The Day Dumbfounded Got His Pylon’ was set in fashionable, middle-class Wilmslow in Cheshire, where Rupert Skern (Roy Kinnear) – a prolific writer to the press under the pen name “Dumbfounded” – discovered that an Englishman’s home is not his castle when his beautiful garden was invaded by workmen, and he came up against the burly “Im” (Brian Glover) who had been sent to measure up the garden for a pylon.
Rosalie Williams, Arthur Spreckley, Carol MacReady and Ted Morris co-starred.
‘From the Roots Came the Rapper’ was set in Stockport and directed by Colin Bucksey. Tommy Boyle starred as Kevin, an aspiring DJ, with Margot Leicester, Jackie Fisher, Simon Malloy, Pamela Austin, and Terry McDonald in the supporting cast.
Written by Liverpool novelist/playwright Alan Bleasedale, ‘Dangerous Ambition’ was set in a Mersey township and opened with a Catholic priest (Daniel Massey) packing his bags, changing into ‘civvies’ and leaving the priesthood forever. Cleared of an indecent assault, he still senses a slur on his character.
George Hagan, Drew Dawson, Rita Howard, Janette Smith, Christine Prentice and Janette Bond co-starred.
Shot on location on the Lune Estuary, ‘Seawrack” starred Bernard Lee with Philip Pollitt, Stanley Page and Rowena Parr.
Roy Kinnear returned in the title role in ‘Kasper’s Last Stand’ as Bertrand Kasper, a Blackpool Punch and Judy man whose secret ambition is to put on adult-rated puppet shows. When he gets his puppets mixed up, his ambition suddenly becomes reality. Elaine Donnelly co-starred as Kasper’s wife, who was called – wait for it – Judy.
A policeman, a showman and an incontinent donkey added to the jollity.
Each of the six Sense of Place plays was specially written by local writers living in the North West region.
Pennine Man | The Day Dumbfounded Got His Pylon | From the Roots Came the Rapper | Dangerous Ambition | Seawrack | Kasper’s Last Stand