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Tough ex-miners in South Wales drinking gin instead of the traditional beer, giving their wives the cold shoulder and secretly turning to cock-fighting. It all sounds wildly out of character to Dr Quist and his team, who investigate despite the fact that all this is taking place in the Minister's own constituency.

A fish is scooped out of a large indoor pool by an coveralled worker whilst another injects it with a syringe. The fish is released. A walk-way gantry splits the room in half. There are several of these large indoor fish pools. The Welsh workers are predominantly older men, except for a young lad, Bryn– who the foreman Vincent Llewellyn spots and tells him that you can't do the job wearing gloves. The boy protests that the Colonel told him to but Llewellyn retorts that the Colonel doesn't have to do the job. Dai, a man twenty years older than the 40 year old Llewellyn stands up for the boy, fed up with Llewellyn always picking on him. Llewellyn sacks him; he is offered a fight, outside, man to man. 'Lost your bloody guts, along with your wife!' taunts Dai. The fight begins after Dai calls him a nancy boy! The English Colonel appears on the gantry and stops the fight, Dai is told to get out. Llewellyn tries to apologies to the Colonel but it is forgotten. Dai was a trouble maker. Colonel Smithson wants to know why the men aren't wearing gloves; he had given explicit orders. Llewellyn explains that the men find it easier without them. Smithson tells the men to get back on with their work, and then mentions to his foreman that next week their MP is coming down to visit and he wants something impressive to show him – he has just been made Minister of National Security. Llewellyn makes a show of putting on his gloves but instantly pulls them off again when the Colonel has gone. Bryn protests but Llewellyn doesn't care 'He knows, boy. He knows.' The other workers do the same and carry on injecting the fish...


'Minister of National Security ex-private with Royal Welsh Fusiliers in the war' is the story in the papers and Quist, Ridge and Wren discuss their new boss – 'John Timothy Davies, of all people. I was hoping for something more substantial than this!' comments Quist. It seems his blandness and party loyalty has worked in his favour. Wren doesn't think much of the job with too much importance. But when he says that Davies's only asset is his work for his constituents, Quist wonders if that's why the new Minister wants to see him - to come up with something brilliant for his area. 'Something that will transform and rejuvenate those valleys of his.' Quist wants ideas that would impress Davies, nothing too grand, just enough to rock him a little, give their department a positive image rather than being seen as professional nuisances. Quist gets quite excited by the idea and feels positive – 'I've been summoned to the presence!'

It is the Minister's policy to meet the heads of all his departments and Quist's work is very valuable, but isn't it a bit negative? 'Poacher turned gamekeeper,' says Quist. He explains that he has switched his work from causes into effects. The Minister tells Quist that he is not popular, either personally nor his section. 'They say you're stiff necked.' 'I am circumcised, though' says Quist, knowing his Bible, or at least that bit. That pleases the Minister who gets to the point he wanted to make to Quist, in a friendly, fatherly manner: 'Don't give me trouble, boy. My predecessor, now you riled him. But me, I'm not easy to rile.' Quist looks glum...

Clocking off time at the factory - for this shift anyway, and Llewellyn is met at the gates by his ex wife, Liz, a glamorous looking woman nearly 40, who says he is late with his alimony. Not wanting his workers to see this, he pulls her to one side to hand over the money and talk. He told her that he nearly had a fight over her today, nearly got the sack. She isn't impressed. 'That'll be the day. The Colonel needs someone to do his dirty work for him.' Despite the edge, there does seem to be a little fondness between the two. He wants to see her tonight as he's not on the night shift but she refuses. They've tried, she says, lots of times, she';s not going through that again now...

Back at the Doomwatch lab, Toby is showing Ridge some lighter than air bricks made from the waste from coal tips – mineral granules. Unfortunately, it would require transplanting populations to make economic sense, picking areas within the Minister's constituency! Another valley contains an extensive factory farm established about two years ago in an area with a population of 700. Wren has a paper on the area. It has an amazing claim to fame: it's got the greatest number of broken marriages in Britain. 'Stone me, the stuff that computer turns up.' 'It's all grist for Quist,' says Toby, delighted at his turn of phrase. Ridge agrees, but he didn't think the returned Doctor Quist did! Resignedly Quist tells him he can forget his poetic dreaming. The Minister was on about them and in a familiar track indeed. 'Doomwatch presses on regardless, let there be no doubt on that score.' Quist decides to get back to work, and asks about the Maxton report into exhaust fumes, but the computer screen catches his eye – some information – two prosecutions for cock fighting last year! In Wales? Quist remembers seeing one in Mexico, a fascinating effect: total sexual excitement. Wren also tells Quist, whose interest is growing, that gin is the favourite drink here as well. 'Gin? For ex-South Wales farmers?' 'That's a pretty picture isn't it?' begins Ridge. 'There's this big butch ex-Miner, with a glass of pink gin in one hand, giving his wife the elbow, watching the cock fight.' It's dead out of character. And why put the factory farm there? Quist thinks Ridge should go down and find out why... Is this really for Doomwatch, asks Wren. Quist is only inquiring, well, Ridge will be, unofficially, pretending to be a reporter, trying to dig up a background feature on their Mr Davies. They will be assembling data and then judge it. And if it's explosive, let it blow up – preferably in his face!

Ridge has found himself a contact from the local paper, a soft spoken Welshman who Ridge meets in the bar of a small pub called The Red Lion, near the factory farm. Ridge is pretending to be a freelance features writer, offering Jones five guineas a day for his research, contacts, knowledge. 'We press men must stick together. It will come out of my expenses... Mine will be the only swindle sheet, is that understood?' So, it begins. What are the big stories in the Valleys? Ridge eventually brings Jones onto cock fighting. Welsh miners have a reputation for dogs or pigeons... It was just an incident, said Jones, trying to downplay it.

That night, in a barn, a crowd of men are watching a cock fight. Heavy drinking and very excited men watching two cockerels fight each other viciously, blood and feathers on the ground. Ridge and Jones are there, and so is Llewellyn, who tries to stop a nauseated Ridge from leaving because the fight is not over yet. Llewellyn is startled by Ridge's accent but says nothing.

The next day, back at the Red Lion, Jones is trying not to be seen. 'They don't like spies or reporters very much out here...' They discuss last night. Ridge didn't see many young people at the fight. Jones explains that there aren't many young people left in the area. No jobs around, not even at the factory farm. The Colonel won't employ anybody under forty apart from a couple of young lads because he wanted a stable labour force. He pays good wages too and compared to what coal miners were used to, quite light work. 'Farming Developments Limited. Chairman and Managing Director Colonel Archibald Smithson, now what brought him down here, apart from being called Archibald?' wonders Ridge. He just turned up, the council did a lot of advertising for local industry. Ridge decides to have a look at the plant before meeting the man. His car outside. Jones has seen it and is impressed. 'Who says journalism doesn't pay?'

Ridge first notices the smell from the plant. There are flies too in the summer according to Jones. But for the locals what's the option? This place once had coal. The local trading estate employs women or slips of boys but here... a god send. Ridge regards the factory farm as an abomination. 'You cranky about shoving animals close together? If you are, why don't you go exposing Surrey or Essex or any other English county? Why pick on us?' But Ridge still finds the set up a bit odd. Ridge wants his visit to be fixed up for tomorrow, he wasn't sure if his stomach is strong enough. They go back to the pub. Colonel Smithson puts up there too... They may meet him.

At the Red Lion, Colonel Smithson is taking a drink at the bar and asks Mrs Adams what is on the menu tonight? 'Your chicken and your turkey, of course, Colonel. Hot or cold. But I've got some nice fish for you.' She tells him that a writer from London has arrived today. Ridge. 'A writer, that's a new one.' Ridge and Jones arrive and Smithson introduces himself, pleased to meet a stranger. Jones tells him he is doing a set of feature articles for magazines. Ridge buys them a drink, and they go and sit in the Snug before dinner. Mrs Adams tells them that she buys their food locally, a big supporter of the Colonel's work here. Smithson explains that Ridge can see the plant but there are trade secrets he wishes to preserve. And their battery farming standards – space per bird – is higher than those recommended by the government. They also control the environment of the animals too, so it may be night outside but day inside. Ridge is welcome to see the plant tonight on what is called 'The Third Watch.' They work shifts around the clock. Ridge would rather go after dinner, Smithson says that Mrs Adams could also fix him some fish for tomorrow if he proves to be squeamish. 'I eat a lot of fish.'

Ridge visits the farm and sees the frankly gruesome and mechanical nature of the process – chickens are killed, feathers boiled off, feet clipped and packaged. Ridge looks on aghast.

Afterwards, he is taken into Smithson's office for a drink from a rather impressive drinks cabinet. Smithson notices Ridge is a little shaken. Ridge puts it down to sentimentality and then is allowed to ask a series of questions, why did he bring his process here. Simple economics; a lot of space, low rateable value and cheap labour, well paid for these parts but it offsets the higher transport costs. His process is more labour intensive than others, but Smithson refuses to divulge what. But the point is here he doesn't have to compete for labour. Ridge asks for his background and is given a dossier.

'Eastern Command, RU Section 14 1956 – 62. Contained at least one research group involved in finding new scientific war weapons.' Wren is talking to Bradley about their researches into Colonel Smithson's background. There was a weapon research station at Glyne. Wren wonders if they have picked up anything from there? Bradley programmes the computer and Wren instantly spots something: the potential destruction of the bone structure in non-carnivorous organisms.' The current theory for the change of personality in the ex Welsh miners could be an abnormally high level of hormones in the chicken feed enough to emasculate the men who worked there. . Bradley digs deeper. The project was abandoned, there was a need for a large number of workers and a potential health hazard. That tallies with the Colonel's large health force. Wren is bothered. 'I might eat one of his chickens.'

Mrs Adams offers Ridge one of the Colonel's fish – a new line, he doesn't have any samples to spare. Ridge did not see any fish in his tour. 'Three doors nobody's allowed behind,' explains Jones. Mrs Adams is very keen on the fish – they taste fresh, like Trout, except there are no bones.

Never a one.

The ex Mrs Llewellyn spots her former husband lurking outside her home, probably his home once, and calls him in before anybody sees him. She guesses he has been watching to see if she is with anybody and taunts him about his suspicions. Close to tears she wants to be left alone. Suddenly Llewellyn grabs her and kisses her, but he suddenly breaks down, gives up, distraught. Something is wrong with him. He doesn't understand, the doctor says he is a perfectly, healthy man. So why this? Liz says people changed, he has and so has she. 'I know you, you haven't changed. You want it as much as any other.' She is too upset, wants him to go, but it is clear he wants to talk to her. 'Or do I have to call the police again?'

That night, after everyone has gone to bed, Ridge, dressed in his dressing gown enters the kitchen of the Red Lion and investigates the fridge and freezer. He finds a packet of the Colonel's fish in a blue box. Hearing someone coming down the stairs, he hides it in the fridge and grabs a bottle of milk. It is the Colonel with a golf club thinking he has heard a burglar. Ridge pretends he was feeling hungry and the conversation turns to the 'Taste-Away Trout' that he had for his dinner. It is his new line, soon to be launched. And the price it will retail for astonishingly cheap. And never a bone. Ridge is amazed.

The next day, Bradley submits his report to Quist with Wren. The chicken from farming development are no different from any others. But the detail that caught Wren's eye was the low calcium content of the bone structure. Quist gets a little fed up of being subjected to linguistic analysis from Wren but takes his point. The experiment of dissolving bone structure Quist turns to next. Smithson might have had access to that enquiry. Smithson is employed in birds with a marginally reduced bone structure. It's a chain of coincidences. And then there's the bone free fish that Ridge has discovered. 'A revolution in food technology,' exclaims Quist. It's a logical step forward but the only means of inhibiting growth are dangerous to the health of those who do the inhibiting. But does the Colonel know this? It's up to Ridge.

Ridge is interviewing Mrs Llewellyn who is quite attracted to him but he seems a little hesitant which is unlike him... He brings up the subject of the divorce. They were once a happy couple when he worked down the mines, but this new job, went to his head... It turns out she was the one who was unfaithful. Llewellyn just wasn't interested any more. She's sad about the way things have turned out, she's still quite fond of him. She went into details, she thought his lack of interest was that he might have had another woman, but he didn't. It was quite a shock, and then she had an affair, Vincent found out and they had a divorce – first one in the village. Ridge becomes uneasy when she comes onto him a little strongly and he leaves her, regretfully... Liz goes to the mirror where she had previously put on lipstick, and sees herself...

Ridge gets onto the phone to talk to Quist, a worried man! Quist assures him that if all Ridge has done is eaten the fish, he is no worse off than as if he has eaten any other pre-packaged frozen food. There is no risk whatsoever. 'Now that worry is off your mind, let's get to work,' says Quist. The current surmise is that touching the fish in its live state is the dangerous part. Ridge suggests this means you become sterile and impotent and this may explain why the Colonel employs older men; they won't notice the change although their wives do...

Quist goes to see the Minister in the morning. The Minister is leaving in forty minutes to go to his constituency which ties in nicely with what Quist is here for. Quist is proposing to get the Ministry of Health and Social Security to hold an enquiry into Smithson's firm and his employees. 'Jobs that turn men into eunuchs...' The Minister can't believe it; that firm provides much needed jobs for the area, 'It's a fantasy. What evidence have you got?' demands the Minister. 'None,' replies Quist. He knows it may ruin the industry but he would rather do that than a community. The Minister knows what might happen if hints are made that there is something sterilizing those birds. Quist tells him one of his people is down there posing as a reporter but being discreet. Quist explains that at their first meeting, he came prepared with some thoughts on developments that might help the Minister's area. In the event the interview didn't go that way, but their rudimentary research uncovered this. The Minister refuses to believe it. Then there will be public disclosure, warns Quist. The interview begins to turn nasty. 'You're think you're bloody clever don,t you?' 'I find this kind of discussion highly distasteful. I indulge in it merely to protect you'' says Quist. Davies still refuses to have a public enquiry so one will be forced on him. 'And you'll never work in government again!' storms Davies. 'And nor will you!' rejoins Quist! Davies is told his car will be leaving in three minutes. Davies tells Quist he is coming with him. The first start is to confront Colonel Smithson... The Minister puts on his coat and hat.

Smithson takes Davies and Quist into his office, and offers them a drink but the Minister says they are pressed for time. He has a meeting later that day. Quist explains that he works for the Ministry and is aware that Smithson worked in science himself at Glyne. 'I guarded it,' says the Colonel. 'What went on inside I knew nothing about...' 'Not even a clumsy technique for inhibiting the development of bone structure in vertebrates?' The Minister gets to the point and asks if there is any health hazard in his process. Smithson disguises his worry with bluster and is outraged at the suggestion. Quist asks if he ever touches the product. Smithson says he eats it all the time. Quist rephrases the question: does he touch it in its raw state? That's what he employs men for. He asks what kind of inquisition this is? 'It's into the state of mind of a man who subjects his workers into great health hazards...' He asks Smithson to go out and handle his stock – the fish... The process is secret, says Smithson feebly. 'It was secret at Glyne weapon research station too, wasn't it?' In all this, he exchanges looks with the Minister who begins to be convinced.

They enter the fish farm and Quist asks the Minister to pick up a fish but he declines. The Colonel also refuses to pick one up. 'I won't play charades.' That satisfies the Minister. 'You can have your enquiry.' Smithson asks Llewellyn for his gloves – but Quist notices that the workers do not wear them, which appals the colonel. Llewellyn backs his boss by explaining that it is difficult handling the fish without them even though the Colonel tells them to wear them. Llewellyn thought the Colonel knew and turned a blind eye. He asks what the fuss is about? Quist explains he is asking the Colonel to do what they all do – put his hands into the liquid. He notices that the Colonel has a cut on his knuckle... Llewellyn refuses to leave. He too has a cut, easy to do on the fish. Smithson changes tack and points out that the men in the room are old and grateful for the work. 'If there is any effect, it hardly matters.' 'I'm not an old man,' protests Llewellyn. 'They still want to be men, don't they? Not castrati.' By now the workers are listening to this. Llewellyn is suddenly starting to understand and asks Quist if they mean him. He shouts down Smithson and even the Minister. Quist tells the poor man that he believes there is a danger to their virility in their work. 'Contact with the chicken... is dangerous, contact with these fish because of the viscosity of the liquid in which they live has a far more lasting and tragic effect.' Smithson calls this utter rubbish but Llewellyn looks furiously at him. Trying to regain command, Smithson instructs his men to continue work, saying he will talk to them later. He asks the Minister to come back to his office. He walks on the gangway and asks Quist to follow. Suddenly, Llewellyn pulls the Colonel into a fish pond. He is covered in the liquid, having gone face down and swallowed some. Spluttering and in a state of shock he is helped out by the workers. Quist asks for an ambulance whilst Llewellyn has him taken to a first aid room. Quist suggests he ought to be put in a chair. The Minister carefully walks across the gantry to where Quist and Llewellyn are attending the Colonel. He asks what happened. Llewellyn thinks he slipped, very slippery up there but Quist claims he saw it all – looking at a nervous Llewellyn. He agrees. It was an accident. The Colonel's chances are remote. 'Will his bones turn into cartilage? I don't know. He got it in the lungs. I think his chances of survival are slight.' The Minister is shocked. 'Poor devil.' 'Poor? No, Minister. When these men find out what's happened to them, I think even the Colonel will consider it a timely exit.' Quist looks sadly at Llewellyn.

Synopsis by Michael Seely


The Battery People showed men who were handling hormone-based fish feed becoming impotent. ‘This seemed a little over-speculative at the time we thought it up two-and-a-half years ago,’ Pedler says. ‘But just a few months before it was screened a similar incident actually occurred on a farm in Leicestershire.’
Davis describes how the Doomwatch version portrayed events “These men were working in this hormone dust; it got into their bodies and they became impotent. We had a Welsh mining village full of Richard Burton and Anthony Hopkins type characters who had switched from drinking beer to gin, where the divorce rate went up. In our story we focused on one couple who had been suffering from this and at the end they took the guy who had set up this farm and threw him into his own stuff and kill him.” The episode went out on a Monday night and a major story broke in the next day’s paper. Male workers at a contraceptive pill factory were having to be replaced by middle-aged women because of the effects of the hormones on their bodies.

Spectre At The Feast dealt with pollution poisoning our food, and this week we see a breakthrough in food technology, albeit safe for the consumer, tragic for the workers. This is the second story in a row to deal with malpractice in business. This time it is far more sinister.

What is in our food? Quite fashionable issue now, public awareness, GM food, (what would Pedler say about that?), labelling, the amount of junk that goes into our food and the processes feature in Pedler's Quest for Gaia. We are so very ignorant about how are food is processed, right down to the humble loaf. We assume it is safe because it is in the shops! And how are food is prepared, we are protected from because of our squeamish nature. We don't look at a prepared chicken wrapped up in polythene and think of it as once being a living, breathing animal. We see it as a product. There are apocryphal tales of children thinking fish comes from tins.

We wouldn't have been so squeamish about where our meat comes a hundred years ago... The scenes cut from UK Gold's transmission of the episode shows the grisly, mechanical nature of the work. Ridge calls the factory farm an abomination but his companion, Jones, berates him for his crankiness. Mind you, Ridge didn't show too much concern in No Room For Error either to the battery hens.

This story is a tragedy that keeps getting more and more tragic once you consider the implications.
It is about the health consequences of an immoral business man, an ex-soldier too, who is used to being obeyed, and perhaps used to soldiers being experimented on (nuclear tests – the Easter islands,) even more recently discovered experiments on soldiers from the cold war period, infected with illnesses and cures... It is only now being admitted – after most of the potential claimants in a costly court case are dead.)
It's not just a health and safety story of Smithson not ensuring proper regulations to be carried out, turning a blind eye. Here it is wilful, employing men who might not notice the changes.
Wearing gloves would not have been enough. Fish splash about, drops get onto your face, water also seeps down your sleeves whether you like it or not. And the men who find the gloves hard to work with, they've unknowingly brought it on themselves. The thing is, they should never have been subjected to the liquid in the first place! The colonel is using a process developed in a weapons research unit and uses a dangerous, abandoned secret for his commercial use.

The central tragedy is Llewellyn's impotency. Hear No Evil investigates how a Man is a Man by his trade. Here, it is about his ability to have sex. The chemical liquid has changed the personalities of the chicken handlers, but the fish farm gives them direct contact with the stuff. So their personalities change. Llewellyn does notice, obviously, his impotency, perhaps after the reasons for his wife's affair became apparent. And he can't understand it. It destroyed his marriage. In this episode we see him coming to terms with this, it was probably only recently that he tried to analyse why he lost his sex drive. A bit of kitchen sink but it's valid, moving and coded! It is good that he gets his revenge. To dismiss these scenes is to miss the point of the menace.

One can only wonder if the revelation Llewellyn has had, might have brought his wife back to him. He divorced her, not the other way round.

This is the first tour of the regions – next week, its Yorkshire. The Welsh are treated with respect. No clich├ęs about choirs, chapels, leaks and 'boyos' here. This was also a period when you could safely talk about national characteristics. So your Welsh coal miners are dog and pigeon fanciers, and hard drinking beer men. Jones becomes quite passionate about his area, knowing what an expose could do to the area. Their MP, Davies too is concerned. Ridge describes them as dying.
Written by Elwyn Jones, the man who didn't write The Highlanders for Doctor Who in 1966, this is hardly surprising. One only hopes he didn't get Gerry Davis to write this script for him too.

Communities that lose a central employer – whether it be a factory or a mine or a shipyard or a steelworks, cries out for new jobs. The young leave, no longer feeling a purpose to stay. And those aforementioned jobs had good wages, and almost a job for life, if you wanted that sort of life, but that was a mythologised. Here it is 1970, and coal mines get exhausted, become uneconomic and the poor man is caught out, a simple economic unit, discarded. We hear talk of development grants and such. Also Jones the reporter attacks Ridge's attitude towards exposing his puzzlement here, a place that needs the jobs. Mrs Adams, proprietor of the Red Lion, is also a supporter of the Colonel. Smithson: we get a little seminar in this episode about how business operates. I'm sure the reasons he choose to settle in South Wales are true, but if not he has an excellent cover.

There is a new Minister for National Security – and he wants a quiet life, which is how he got his job. Quist has it in for him, and is keen to set up an investigation – valid reasons – but doesn't mind if it blows up in his face! This echoes his feelings about the plastic eaters minister. By the second season, he sees them as protecting Doomwatch (Flight into Yesterday) and by the third series, a necessary nuisance. Doomwatch first series doesn't like ministers. The Minister / Quist confrontation is the strongest yet, violent words exchanged. Unlike Burial At Sea's Minister who uses sweet words and then sticks the knife in Admiral Tranton, this one gets to see Quist's methods in action and is convinced. Davies, is of course, worried about the employment situation. Quist is worried about the erosion of a community. One wonders whether Davies would have tried to cover it up and moderate the Colonel's work. And would Quist have alerted the media as he did in Burial At Sea?

So what did happen following the death of the Colonel? We saw no other administrative staff, no hints of other board members. Obviously the 'Taste-Away Trout; would have been withdrawn, but what about the chickens? There was a calcium content reduction, enough to be significant. Would that too have been stopped? Quist said that the chicken process was harmful but not as devastating as what we see with the fish farmers. Did the whole firm shut down? Mass unemployment returns and a community dies out?

Oh, here the 1960s! 'You'll get your cards.... new pence... the British housewife... the snug... ' All we needed was a reference to HP and we'd have the full kit.

Who is Laing, played by Jay Neill? Was he the intercom voice? That's unusual to credit – normally they get another actor to double up! And where did Ridge stay after the cock fight? He only seem to book in to The Red Lion the next day.

It was an episode fondly remembered by Gerry Davis as an example of what Doomwatch is all about. Robert Powell singled it out during the Cult of Doomwatch programme.

Oh, and that Bible quote was apparently: Therefore circumsize the foreskin of your heart and be stiff-necked no longer. In other words, stop worrying and be happy or shut up and believe what you're told. Smithson would have approved.

Reviewed by Michael Seely 


Project Number: 02249/4088



It appears that Moris Farhi was commissioned to work on a version of this script around January 1969 and was briefly known as "Any Man's Death" around May 1969 before reverting back to The Battery People as originally envisaged.

12th February (Filming and overtime SIMON OATES)
2 nights subsistence @ £3.15.0 per night).
26th February (Overtime) SIMON OATES
27th February (Overtime) SIMON OATES


Tuesday 3rd March 1970
Camera Rehearsals: 2.00 - 6.30 (with TK-45)
SUPPER: 6.30 - 7.30
Camera Rehearsals: 7.30 - 10.00 (with TK-45 till 8)

Wednesday 4th March 1970
Camera Rehearsals: 11.00 - 1.00 (with TK-45)
LUNCH: 1.00 - 2.00
Camera Rehearsals: 2.00 - 6.00  (with TK-45)
SUPPER: 6.00 - 7.00
Sound & Vision Line-up: 7.00 - 7.30
TELERECORD: 7.30 - 10.00 VTC/6HT/57685

Extra recording time is needed...
Camera Rehearsals: 5th March (overtime)
Telerecording: 6th March VTC/6HT/57685
Editing: Friday 6th March 10.30 - 1.30pm

The episode is scheduled for transmission on Monday 13th April 1970 but not actually transmitted until 27th April (2 weeks later), so must have originally been planned as episode 9.


Factory (fishtanks), & Colonel's Office
Doomwatch composite (without General Office)
Minister's Office
Red Lion; Bar, Snug, Kitchen
Elizabeth's living-room

3 telephone corners:
Jones's newspaper office
Red Lion
Telephone Box


Before the scene where Smithson is introduced to Ridge in the inn, a phone call back to London has been cut. Ridge is still feeling ill after watching the cock-fight and asks for no humour from Quist. 'I don't expect to eat at all today.' Quist wonders if he has any real facts or sentimental hunches: 'The worst kind – sentimentality about animals.' He gives Ridge a couple more days as Ridge decides to try Colonel Smithson's Battery Farm.


Dr. Spencer Quist

Dr. John Ridge

Tobias Wren

Colin Bradley

Vincent Llewellyn

Colonel Archibald Smithson

The Minister John Davies

Mrs. Adams

Bill Jones

Elizabeth Llewellyn



Uncredited Cast / Non Speaking



Series devised by

Music composed by

Film Cameraman

Sound Recordist

Film Editor

Studio Lighting

Studio Sound

Script Editor

Assistant to Producer



Directed by

Uncredited Crew





Costume Supervisor

Make-up Supervisor

Vision Mixer

Floor Assistant



Sound Supervisor

Grams. Operator

27TH APRIL 1970
9.45PM - 10.35PM

With thanks to John Archbold for the Radio Times listing and cover.

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