TV UK TV

Hunter’s Walk (ITV 1973-1976, Ewan Hooper, Davyd Harries)

Hunter's Walk

Crime drama series Hunter’s Walk followed the cases of the police in the small Midlands town of Broadstone. Most seen coppers were Detective Sergeant “Smithy” Smith and station officer Sergeant Ken Ridgeway as well as PC Fred Pooley and PC “Mickey” Finn.

Created by Lord Ted Willis, whose long running series Dixon of Dock Green was winding up on BBC-1, Hunter’s Walk has a nicely domestic feel, most of the cases tackled by the boys were quite small in scale and there was also room for the boys personal lives too. Smith’s wife Betty (played by Hi-De-Hi star Ruth Madoc) was a prominent part of the series and series three saw Ridgeway’s marriage fall apart.

The town of Rushden, Northants was the real life stand in for Broadstone, with Hunter’s Walk being one of the main streets in the town and the police station also being located on the street.

Richard Harris, who acted as script editor on the series contributed quite a few scripts as did P.J. Hammond, Ted Willis himself, Leslie Duxbury, Dave Martin & Bob Baker, Brian Finch, Roger Marshall and Tony Hoare.

Sadly of the 39 episodes made only ten are still in existence, only half a dozen from season one (and only in black and white), 1 from season two and three from season three. Early 1980’s BBC procedural Juliet Bravo carries clear echoes of this series.

The wonderfully rural meets town theme tune by Derek Scott is a major plus too.

Hunter's Walk Ruth Madoc

Ruth Madoc as Betty Smith

production details
UK / ITV – ATV / 39×60 minute episodes / Broadcast 4 June 1973 – 24 August 1976

Creator: Ted Willis / Script Editors: Richard Harris, Nicholas Palmer / Theme Music: Derek Scott / Police Advisor: Ex-Detective Superintendent S. Wolfenden / Producer: John Cooper

cast
Ewan Hooper as Detective Sergeant Smith
Davyd Harries as Sergeant Ken Ridgeway
Duncan Preston as Police Constable Fred Pooley
Charles Rea as Police Constable Harry Coombes
David Simeon as Police Constable Mickey Finn
Ruth Madoc as Betty Smith

THE EPISODES
SEASON ONE 4 June – 3 September 1973
1. DISTURBANCE (4 June 1973)
2. LOCAL KNOWLEDGE (11 June 1973)
3. OUTCAST (18 June 1973)
4. BEHAVIOUR (25 June 1973)
5. VANISHING TRICK (2 July 1973)
6. REASONABLE SUSPICION (9 July 1973)
7. DISCRETION (16 July 1973)
8. CARE AND PROTECTION (23 July 1973)
9. INCIDENT (30 July 1973)
10. THE OLD FOLKS AT HOME (6 August 1973)
11. ALL TOO TIDY (13 August 1973)
12. LOST DOG (20 August 1973)
13. SKELETONS (3 September 1973)

SEASON TWO 22 April – 22 July 1974
1. HELP (22 April 1974)
2. PERSPECTIVES (29 April 1974)
3. VILLAIN (6 May 1974)
4. BLIND EYE (13 May 1974)
5. LOST SHEEP (20 May 1974)
6. CHARLIE (3 June 1976)
7. DIGGER (10 June 1974)
8. ELLA (17 June 1974)
9. WITNESS (24 June 1974)
10. STEADY JOB (1 July 1974)
11. VISITORS (8 July 1974)
12. FREE WHILE WEDNESDAY (15 July 1974)
13. KIDS (22 July 1974)

SEASON THREE 1 June – 24 August 1976
1. INTENT (1 June 1976)
2. REPRISALS (8 June 1976)
3. SUDDEN DEATH (15 June 1976)
4.OUTSIDERS (22 June 1976)
5. ECHOES (29 June 1976)
6. SAY NOTHING (6 July 1976)
7. NOT ME (13 July 1976)
8. INTERFERENCE (20 July 1976)
9. JOB (27 July 1976)
10. MISSING (3 August 1976)
11. SPINSTERS (10 August 1976)
12. TAKE AWAY (17 August 1976)
13. KICKING AND SCREAMING (24 August)