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Man From Haven, The (ITV 1972, Ian Holm, Leonard Sachs)



Crime drama series The Man From Haven followed shady businessman Jack Byron Lever who learns the identity of a number of Swiss bank account holders and embarks on a course of blackmail in a bid to make a million pounds in a month.

Series creator Wilfred Greatorex, speaking to the TV Times (15/7/72), said the idea for the series came to him when he was stopped at London Airport’s Passport Control and asked how much he was taking out of the country. This at a time when there very strict controls on the amount of money you could take out of the country with you.

Leonard Sachs who co-starred is perhaps best known as host of the BBC’s popular 1970’s variety series The Good Old Days.

The first episode was previewed in The Daily Mirror (Friday 21 July 1972): THE “Man from Haven,” (ITV 9 p.m.) the latest ATV creation of Wilfred Greatorex, who also brought “The Power Game” and “Hine” to the screen, is a blackmailer with the Robin Hood touch. His prey are people who have made their fortunes illegally or immorally. The “haven” refers to the tax haven enjoyed by wealthy businessmen who have stashed their loot in numbered bank accounts in Switzerland, away from the eagle eyes of tax inspectors. lan Holm plays a young businessman who sets out to make a million pounds in a month—using his inside knowledge of those numbered accounts and the people who hold them. But his girl friend (Prunella Ransome) provides problems during the six-week series because she wants to keep him on the straight and narrow. Says Greatorex: “It took a lot of research and a trip to Zurich to meet some of those ‘gnomes’ before I started the series, but I think it was well worthwhile.”

production details
UK / ITV – ATV / 6×60 minute episodes / Broadcast 21 July – 25 August 1972

Creator: Wilfred Greatorex / Music: Christopher Gunning / Design: Stanley Mills / Producer: Richard Bates / Directors: Peter Wood (episodes 1,3,5) and Mike Newell (episodes 2,4,6)

Ian Holm as Jack Byron Lever
Leonard Sachs as Schaffer
Prunella Ransome as Terry
Clifford Parrish as Oswald Kohler
Ivor Roberts as Donald Balfour
Anna Korwin as Secretary
John Caesar as Vallais
David Butler as Strobel
Simon Cadell as Michael Western
Laurence Naismith as Sir James Western
Julian Holloway as Guy Western
Susan Fleetwood as Andrea
Ray McAnally as Lansing
Gordon Jackson as Franklin
John Savident as Chairman