If You Can’t Beat Them opens with a very groovy scene inside a clearly happening nightclub, the music, a quite heavy instrumental is pretty good too. Young nightclub owner Mark Foster (played by Geoffrey Whitehead) is wearing the most outrageous wig, thankfully he soon takes it off.
Foster, one of the ten richest men in town, is involved in a business discussion (along with Hadleigh and a group of prominent businessmen) about buying a building that could become an arts centre for Westdale. Foster though wants the building for a casino he wants to open. Hadleigh decides to play Foster at his own game and buy into the casino with him with the aim of getting the arts centre too.
Susan, who is looking significantly more expensively groomed since becoming Hadleigh’s fiancee, is none too impressed about James’ involvement with Foster and his girlfriend/backer, the wealthy Charlotte Sydney (an old flame of Hadleigh’s).
The episode features a welcome appearance from a now heavily bearded Gazette editor Frank Walters (his only Hadleigh appearance) as James seeks his advice on how much impact a casino would have on the area.
UK / ITV – Yorkshire / 1×50 minute episode / Broadcast Tuesday 21 October 1969 at 9.00pm
Writer: John Norton / Production Design: Jane Martin / Director: James Ormerod
Series: Hadleigh Season 1 Episode 6
Gerald Harper as James Hadleigh
Gillian Wray as Susan Jackson
Jon Laurimore as Frank Walters
Heather Kyd as Chrissie
Geoffrey Whitehead as Mark Foster
Llewellyn Rees as Sir Edward Sydney
Geoffrey Reed as Bigland
Graham Tonbridge as Croucher
Tom Macauley as Waddington
Cecilia Darby as Charlotte Sydney
George Camiller as Len
Richard Goolden as Viscount Southcote
Raymond Burke as David