Michael Davies Radio Plays

Michael Davies was an instrument technician at AWCO (the Aluminium Wire & Cable Co1.) in Swansea during the 1980s. He is well known for his radio plays; he also wrote the story lines for the Welsh language soap Pobl y Cwm. He died on 29 Dec 2014 aged 85; his obituary notice described as 'the most positive and optimistic of men'.

Some of his plays, written between 1966 and 1989, are radio classics. "The Flight of the Arrow" is a thriller about quality control; a riveting story set in the aircraft industry. There are other superb 'Engineering Mysteries' - not a very common genre. There is a trilogy of plays about a turf accountant, written with wry humour and a light touch. There are spy stories set in the time of the Cold War : "The Killing of Martin Hoffnung" and "Harry Rolt is Missing". There are lots more which don't fit into neat categories. - N.D.

Many of the plays are still missing, especially those broadcast in the afternoons. Please contact us if you can fill in any of the gaps. The list has been updated. (Jan 2015)

13.07.66 Something in the City*
08.03.67 Try Your Strength*
13.12.67 What to do when the Time Comes*
17.07.68 Keeping up with Father*
20.11.68 Farm on a Headland*

15.04.89 Who, Me?*
19.11.88 The Day We Lost The War*
02.02.85 The Killing Of Martin Hoffnung*
31.12.83 The Geneva Run*
17.07.82 An Offshore Wind*
27.03.82 I, Said The Sparrow*
20.10.79 Flight Of The Arrow*
08.10.77 Lord Of The Dance*

04.11.1982 Overnight Success*
16.07.1982 The Killing Of Billy
22.03.1982 Flight Of The Arrow*
21.02.1980 Molly Fisher & Her Donkey
23.06.1979 The Wild Horses
22.05.1975 Hard To Be A Hero*
16.06.1972 Keeping Up With Father*
27.05.1972 How To Get Away With Murder*
02.06.1971 Sweet Song of the Morning
30.05.1970 No Extra Charge
09.04.1966 Farm on a Headland*

06.04.91 Harry Rolt is Missing*

asterisked plays known to exist in VRPCC collections

Based on information supplied by Roger Bickerton


Something in the City, Keeping up with Father, and What to do when the time comes are all light comedies where the central character is a highly respectable turf accountant.

The killing of Martin Hoffnung....1985
A sinister story about double agents and double-crossing. The plot progresses slowly, like a game of chess. One is left at the end in a daze, and wondering, in the espionage game, if there are any winners...a really excellent play. With George Baker, Ian Seinor, Monica Grey, James Benson, Ray Handy, Nigel Graham, William Roberts, Anist William (sp?), E. Roberts, Anthony Morse, Roger Knott, Erica Eirea (sp?). Directed by Adrian Mourby.

Clive Lever adds: .....

"I've just finished listening to "Harry Rolt is Missing" after "Who? Me?". They're interesting, because they both feature Harry and Maggie Rolt, but the actors and producers are totally different.

"Who? Me?" featured David Timpson and Moir Leslie as the Rolts, and was a Gerry Jones production. Harry Rolt Is Missing featured Peter Richards and Marie Phillips, and was produced in Wales by Alison Hindell, now Head of Radio Drama at the BBC.


Who? Me?....1989
Harry Rolt has difficulty explaining why the woman to whom he gave a lift late one night is attacked and put in intensive care, and her handbag is missing presumed stolen. Is he telling the truth when he says the girl had accidentally left it behind in his car, or have the crew of a ship got more sinister motives, having , illegally dumped chemical waste into the sea?

Harry Rolt is missing....date nk
In the small hours, Harry Rolt and his wife awake to the sounds of someone breaking and entering their house. Harry goes downstairs to confront the burglars, first locking his wife in the bedroom for safety..but then there is the sound of a struggle, and shortly afterwards, a car drives off, and Harry Rolt is missing. But is everything quite as it seems, and why has Harry been kidnapped and by whom? And just who sent the ransom demand for 3 million to the company where Rolt has been working to develop a super-conductor that will work at room temperature?

These are both fine thrillers, but a sense of comedy bubbles constantly below the surface. .........Thanks Clive........ND...

Interesting story set in the offices of an engineering company. An inventor has spent a lot of his own time on company premises developing a revolutionary idea - an underwater welding torch. The question is - does the idea belong to him, or to the company? Producer Gerry Jones. 90m.

27 Mar 82. A nuclear submarine is about to leave for sea trials - sea trials which will not only lead the submarine into terrible danger, but will also reveal the truth behind the crash of the aircraft FJ 101... Cast: Dr Rosemary Helman: Shirley Dixon; Harry Maslin: Alan Dudley; John Saunderson: Peter Jeffrey; Lord Glengower: Cyril Luckham; Dr Nigel Morgan: Gareth Armstrong; Harry Anderson: Jim McManus; Duncan Jones: David Graham; Graham Bowles: Michael Maloney; Cathy Bowles: Theresa Stretfield; Phillip Maitland: Clifford Norgate; Gordon Harkness: Michael McStay; Helen: Tammy Ustinov; Mrs Helan: Pauline Letts; First Lieutenant: George Parson2. Producer - Gerry Jones(?)

Another 'engineering mystery'. There's a plane accident, and company XYZ was involved in supplying the materials for building the plane. Whose fault was it, and who is to pay? Fascinating story. Cast: Dr Rosemary Helman: Shirley Dixon; Harry Maslin: Alan Dudley; John Saunderson: Peter Jeffrey; Frank Morgan: John Bott; Phillip Maitland: Clifford Norgate; Harry Anderson: Jim McManus; Gordon Harkness: Michael McStay; Helen: Tammy Ustinov; Judith: Eva Stewart; Dr Nigel Morgan: Gareth Armstrong; Duncan Jones: David Graham; Mrs Williams: Mary Claire Nash; Pilot: John Church; Ground Control: Philip Voss; Tower Conrol 1: Gordon DeLieu; Tower Control 2: Gordon Reid; Producer: Gerry Jones2.

1. The company made overhead conductors and power cables and were part of the TI group. They had two factories in Swansea. MD worked at the Port Tennant factory. The other site (Jersey Marine) is now the location of a huge Amazon warehouse.

2. Cast lists supplied by Stuart J. Davis ..... thank you..... - ND.

Thanks also to 'Catrin' for supplying Michael's obituary notice.

Nigel Deacon

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