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The MYSTERIOUS CIRCUMSTANCES title was used to group a series of 26 half-hour radio plays distributed by the BBC Transcription Service. The thrillers were either recorded for BBC Transcription Services or taken by them from the BBC’s main archive — some may never have even been broadcast within the UK itself. I’ve uploaded the 18 I have — unfortunately many are in poor sound quality but a few are very good. I’ve posted FLAC (lossless) files when possible. If you happen to have better sounding versions of any episodes, I’d love to hear them, and I’d especially love to track down the episodes I don’t have:
The Playfellow (Cynthia Asquith)
The Signals (C.S. Forester)
The Dog (Ivan Turgenev)
Something To Fear (John Graham)
Grundy (Haydn Wood) 12.8.78
How Love Came to Professor Guildea (Robert Hichens)
Isn’t That A Girl’s Locket? (Pat Connell)
Blind Man’s Hood (John Dickson Carr)
Here’s a list of the episodes included here, along with 2 additional programs (“The Secret Sharer” and “Fiddler of the Reels”) which aren’t part of the official Mysterious Circumstances series, but sound very similar.
Markheim [by Robert Louis Stevenson]
A desperate young man murders an antiques dealer … and then meets a stranger who demands his soul!
Shadow of a Magnitude [by Michael Robson]
Ruth Farrell visits a wealthy drug manufacturer on the pretext of buying his house. Once alone, their civilized conversation reveals the violence she has been concealing.
The Monkey’s Paw [by W W Jacobs]
Directed by Gordon House
1958-11-25 The New Catacomb [by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle]
A mild mannered archaeologist has made an astounding discovery of an untouched burial vault. Adapted by R J B Sellar from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s story and produced by R D Smith. Benchley.
1962-02-28 A Glass of Lemonade [by Barry Bermange]
In a Tyneside pub, a couple discuss the child-murders in their neighborhood. Outside, their little girl befriends a stranger and goes off with him. Produced by Robin Midgley
1962-12-09 What Do You Think? [by Francis Durbridge]
The adventures of a successful crime novelist who is inclined to confuse fact with fiction. Produced by Martin C Webster
1962-12-24 The Goblin Who Stole A Sexton [by Charles Dickens]
From “The Pickwick Papers.” Music composed and conducted by CHRISTOPHER WHELEN, Storyteller Ralph Richardson, Goblin King WILFRED BROWN, Goblins THE AMBROSIAN SINGERS. Adapted & produced by Charles Lefeaux.
1962-12-26 The Demon King [by J B Priestley]
Adapted by Michael and Mollie Hardwick from J. B. Priestley’s story
1963-01-15 The Dancing Partner [by Jerome K Jerome]
1963-08-07 The Lady on the Grey [by John Collier]
Two gentlemen who enjoy Irish women fall under the spell of the mysterious “Lady on the Grey” and are both determine they should conquer her. Have they met their match? Adapted by Michael and Mollie Hardwick from John Collier’s short story.
1963-08-14 An Unrecorded Instance [by Marie Belloc Lowndes]
Hetty Mingle ignores her dying mother’s advice about fortune hunters. Will she end up regretting it? Adapted by Michael and Mollie Hardwick from Marie Belloc Lowndes and produced by Charles Lefeaux.
1963-08-20 Martin’s Close [by M R James]
‘What see you in the comer of the court, that you fix your eyes on it and not on me, your Judge?’ Will the trial of Squire George Martin need help from beyond the grave to convict him of murder? Adapted by Michael and Mollie Hardwick from M. R. James’ story and produced by Charles Lefeaux.
1963-08-29 W.S. [by L P Hartley]
Mr. Streeter is puzzled when he starts to receive postcards signed simply “WS.” Starring Max Adrian, adapted by Michael and Mollie Hardwick from L.P. Hartley’s story and produced by Charles Lefeaux.
1963-09-30 Night Drive To Dover [by Julian Symons]
The Dover Road has a fine romantic ring and the very name would seem to spell adventure for the traveller on it. Produced by Archie Campbell
1963-12-24 Oh Whistle And I’ll Come To You [by M R James]
Adapted by Michael and Mollie Hardwick from M. R. James’ story.
“Easy enough to whistle, but there’s no telling what will answer…” Professor Parkins uncovers a very curious artefact. MR James’s ghostly story adapted by Michael and Mollie Hardwick. Starring Michael Hordern as Professor Parkins.
1967-01-23 Returned Without Thanks [by Berkely Mather]
When the wife of an engineer decides to leave him he plans to murder her. Retribution is the theme of this play about the planning and execution of the almost perfect crime. Produced by Martin C Webster
1973-10-10 Cold Storage [by Philip Levene]
Is Robert Craig just accident prone or is something more sinister going on? Produced by Margaret Etall
1982-10-16 The Drowned Village [by Berlie Doherty]
There’s a reservoir nearby which was formed by flooding a neighboring village. She believes that on the anniversary of the death of that village, its church bell tolls and voices can be heard calling…
Additional episodes not officially part of Mysterious Circumstances:
1989-06-07 The Secret Sharer [by Joseph Conrad]
A tale of a sea captain and a mysterious stowaway. Dramatized by Robert Forrest from Joseph Conrad’s story and directed by Patrick Rayner for BBC Scotland
Fiddler of the Reels [by Thomas Hardy]
The power of the “fiddle” and fiddler can change lives and alter destinies.
- E01 – The New Catacomb [by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle]
- E02 – A Glass of Lemonade [by Barry Bermange]
- E03 – What Do You Think_ [by Francis Durbridge]
- E04 – The Goblin Who Stole A Sexton (Sir Ralph Richardson) [by Charles Dickens]
- E05 – The Demon King by J B Priestley
- E06 – The Dancing Partner [by Jerome K Jerome]
- E07 – The Lady on the Grey [by John Collier]
- E08 – An Unrecorded Instance [by Marie Belloc Lowndes]
- E09 – Martin’s Close (by MR James)
- E10 – W.S. [by L P Hartley]
- E11 – Night Drive To Dover [by Julian Symons]
- E12 – Oh Whistle and I’ll Come to You (by MR James)
- E13 – Returned Without Thanks [by Berkely Mather]
- E14 – Cold Storage [by Philip Levene]
- E15 – The Drowned Village [by Berlie Doherty]
- E16 – The Secret Sharer [by Joseph Conrad]
- E17 – Fiddler of the Reels [by Thomas Hardy]
- E18 – Markheim [by Robert Louis Stevenson]
- E19 – Shadow of a Magnitude [by Michael Robson]
- E20 – The Monkey’s Paw [by W W Jacobs]