1 9 8 2 (UK)
6 x 25 minute episodes
Cockney East End lad Barry Grieves (Ian Barker) was a young tennis player with a promising future in this six-part BBC1 serial. Lucy Roberts (Jane Pearson) – a middle-class girl with the same raw talent – also had dreams of making a name for herself on the courts.
Both youngsters were equally determined to make it to the top with the help and guidance of their coach and mentor, Frank Abbott (Jeremy Burnham, who also wrote the series and was himself, a former county tennis player).
As well as taking part in tournaments, Barry and Lucy had to contend with problems at home (Barry’s parents were far from supportive of Barry’s dreams and despised the snobbery around the game).
15-year-old Ian Barker was a tournament class player from Islington in London, and 13-year-old Jane Pearson from Broxbourne in Hertfordshire was the Herts County Junior Champion and the top player in her age group.
Both were making their debut as actors.
Break Point was filmed entirely on location, culminating in a tennis final on the Centre Court at Devonshire Park, Eastbourne, home of Britain’s Davis Cup team. Parts of the series were also filmed at the recently opened British indoor tennis training facilities at Bisham Abbey, near Marlow.
Davis Cup team captain Paul Hutchins was the technical adviser and the theme tune (arguably more suited to a sci-fi production) was provided by the BBC Radiophonic Workshop.