The Folk Process,2:

Sir Gawaine and the Green Knight

Not everything is at it seems. Not only is there an element of the supernatural in the story but there is also an element of deception in the cast list. I believe that although these episodes were broadcast in 1972/3 they may actually have been created much earlier. Where I can find biographical detail it is shown below - if anybody can fill in the gaps I would appreciate some feedback.

First the details as they appeared in the Radio Times:

11/12/72 Sir Gawain And The Green Knight

Professor Gwyn Jones of University College, Cardiff, introduces his translation of this Medieval Yuletide Poem
Arranged for Stereo in four programmes by Raymond Raikes with music by Stephen Dodgson which includes settings of 14th-century carols

1:Christmas At Camelot - The Beheading Game

The Gawain Poet Deryck Guyler
The Green Knight Norman Ley
King Arthur Robert Eddison
Sir Gawain, his nephew Henry Stamper
Other voices: Geoffrey Beevers, Robin Browne, David Gooderson, John Samson, David Timson.
With The King's Singers directed by Simon Carrington.
The Orchestra is conducted by Rae Jenkins.
Producer Raymond Raikes.

18/12/72 2:Christmas At The Wirral - A Wager And Temptation
The Gawain Poet Deryck Guyler
Sir Gawain Henry Stamper
A Porter Robin Browne
The Host Norman Shelley
His Wife Elizabeth Morgan
Other Voices: Geoffrey Beevers,
David Gooderson,
John Samson,
David Timson.
With the King Singers directed by Simon Carrington
Orchestra conducted by Rae Jenkins
Producer Raymond Raikes

25/12/72 3:Christmas At The Wirral - The Exchange Of Winnings
The Gawain Poet Deryck Guyler
Sir Gawain Henry Stamper
The Host Norman Shelley
His Wife Elizabeth Morgan
Producer Raymond Raikes

01/01/73 4:The New Year At The Green Chapel
The Gawain Poet Deryck Guyler
Sir Gawain Henry Stamper
The Guide David Timson
The Host Norman Shelley
His Wife Elizabeth Morgan
Producer Raymond Raikes

And now the Biographical stuff:


This distinguished Welsh writer & scholar died, aged 92. Born the son of a miner in Blackwood in 1907, he made his name as a literary historian and writer. Founder of The Welsh Review in 1939.

In 1948, he worked with Professor of Welsh, Thomas Jones on the translation of the Mabinogion into English and it remains the standard text in English to this day.

In 1963, he was awarded the Commander's Cross of the Order of the Falcon, by the President of Iceland before receiving his CBE two years later.

Prof Jones's acclaimed book A History of the Vikings was published in 1968 and sold all over the world.

In 1977 he received an honorary DLitt from the University of Wales - the same year as the publication of his book The Oxford Book of Welsh Verse in English.

A further honour followed in 1991 when he received the Medal of the Honorable Society of Cymmrodorion. A defining speech was made by Prof Jones in 1957 in Swansea about the state of Anglo-Welsh literature.

Cardiff University holds annual Gwyn Jones Lectures, where Prof Jones held the Chair of English from 1964 until his retirement in 1975.

His valuable collection of books was presented to the National Library of Wales in Aberystwyth in 1987.


In the heyday of BBC radio, in the 1940s and 1950s, the voice of Deryck Guyler came to personify light entertainment - on shows like ITMA and Eric Barker’s Just Fancy. Later, his face became familiar on television, particularly as Potter, the cantankerous school caretaker in ITV’s Please Sir.

Guyler made a career out of playing the fall guy. It was in 1946 that he first appeared on Tommy Handley’s comedy series ITMA, as the Liverpudlian Frisby Dyke. Later came Just Fancy, and The Men From The Ministry, with Richard Murdoch. There was also the whodunnit series, Inspector Scott Investigates.

On television, there were shows like Sykes & Two’s A Crowd.

The people he played opposite - Eric Sykes, Hattie Jacques, Charlie Chester, Fred Emney, Beryl Reid, Molly Sugden, Eric Barker, and Harry Worth - made up a roll-call of British postwar light entertainment.

Deryck Guyler also provided voice-overs for hundreds of commercials and documentaries

Guyler was a jeweller’s son, born in Wallasey, working briefly as a jeweller, then in farming. He studied theology for a year. He performed with a music-hall singing act and in 1935 joined Liverpool rep, but with the outbreak of war became a RAF policeman. Invalided out in 1942, he joined the BBC Repertory Company.

While his career progressed, Guyler’s own view of his talents remained modest. He had been lucky getting work as an “odd old codger”, he stated. Typically, on location filming Please Sir - he was touched by the warm welcome offered him by a real schoolkeeper. “He always invited me into his cubby-hole,” he said. “‘A nice cup of char, Mr Guyler’, he says. People are really very nice, you know.”

In 1945, he converted to Roman Catholicism, and later one of his sons became a monk. At rehearsals he was often seen studying the Bible. A regular reader for the BBC’s Morning Story slot, he was still working well into his 70s.

Deryck Guyler married Paddy, one of the sisters in the music-hall act, the Lennox Three. When he finally retired, he settled in Australia, joining his son, Chris. A contented, happy man, he is survived by his wife and two sons.

Deryck Guyler, actor, born April 29 1914; died October 7 1999


No information


Born: June 10, 1908 Yokohama Japan

Died December 14 1991 London England

Active on TV and in Films between 1938 & 1991.

(Aside: It is strange that so little info is publicly available about an actor, who, if he is remembered at all, is known for his miniscule part in an Indianna Jones Movie, and not for his numerous appearances on stage and in film.)


No information (and this despite the fact that he appears in hundreds of BBC Dramas and elsewhere)


A British actor who has appeared in many different television roles. He has appeared in Doctor Who a couple of times, most notably playing the Master in the serial The Keeper of Traken. He is married to Caroline John who was also in Doctor Who as the third Doctor companion Liz Shaw.

Geoffrey Beevers attended Oxford University then trained as an actor at LAMDA. His professional experience includes the following:

Theatre: The UN Inspector, Playing with Fire, The Winter's Tale; Andrew Aguecheek in Twelfth Night; The Taming of the Shrew; A Passage to India; The Antipodes, Horatio in Hamlet; A Servant to Two Masters, Pericles, Henry VIII, Comedy of Errors, The Devils, The Time of Your Life, Red Star, Mother Courage (RSC); The Crucible, Friar Lawrence in Romeo and Juliet; The Robbers; The Tower; King Lear in King Lear; Prospero in The Tempest, Puck in A Midsummer Night's Dream; King Lear, Uncle Vanya, Dr. Knock.

Television: The Genius of Mozart; Island at War; Poirot; Goodnight, Mister Tom; Silent Witness; Prime Suspect; The Buddha of Suburbia; War and Remembrance; Magnum, P.I.; MacGuyver; Measure for Measure; Hamlet; Sherlock Holmes; Inspector Morse; Red Dwarf; Harry Enfield; Yes, Prime Minister; A Very Peculiar Practice; Doctor Who; The Marlowe Inquest; A Very British Coup; The Jewel in the Crown.Film: Victor/Victoria, Curse of the Pink Panther, The Woodlanders, Fragile, Miss Potter.

Radio: Many plays and poetry readings for the BBC; book readings include Pilgrim's Progress, Zuleika Dobson.

Geoffrey also writes and directs. His adaptation of George Eliot's Adam Bede won a Time Out Award.


Robin began his career in Liverpool and subsequently appeared in repertory throughout the U.K. He made his West End debut, in 1969, in Eric Porter's production,'My Little Boy My Big Girl.' He went on to play Rusty in Crossroads and was a member of both the BBC radio drama company and the BBC schools radio drama company. During the 1980's he worked as a continuity announcer for Channel 4 before resuming acting as a member of the Peter Hall company.

He played the Reverend Colin Mallow in the National's production of Alan Ayckbourn’s House And Garden. Other West End appearances include Murder At The Vicarage and at the Apollo and Lyric theatres, The Constant Wife. In the subsequent national tour of this Somerset Maugham’s classic he played Mortimer Durham.

He was associate producer of the world premiere of the Vivienne Ellis award winning musical Bon Voyage.

He has lectured in Broadcasting at Middlesex University and for seven years taught radio technique at Mountview Theatre School in North London.

His television credits include Z Cars, Crossroads, It Ain't Half Hot Mum, Macbeth, Outside Edge, Hammer House of Horror, Public Eye, Wycliffe, Grange Hill, The Upper Hand, The Final Passage, The Hunter And The Hunted, Judge John Deed and most recently Panorama: The Hutton Inquiry.

He co-founded The Harry Partnership, a communications skills company, 20 years ago. He is married with three sons and lives in North London.


A British actor who has appeared in several television roles. As well as portraying Davros, creator the Daleks in the Doctor Who serial Destiny of the Daleks, he has appeared in Lovejoy, Mapp & Lucia and A Touch of Frost amongst other roles.


No information.


Actor, director, writer, singer and award-winning audiobook star.

Originally from Leicester, Timson studied at The Guildhall School of Music and Drama, training principally as an actor but also with a strong desire to sing - from Schubert to Sondheim. He studied singing with Richard Ford but acting became his major discipline and eventually his career.

In his final year of study he won the prestigious Carleton Hobbs BBC Radio Award which led to 30 years work on Radio 4, especially, but also Radio 3. His work involves reading everything from poetry to plays to short stories to news items, and means he can be called on at any time to feature. He has been a regular member of the BBC Repertory company, which, though now sadly diminished, still provides the backbone of actors for the ‘wireless’.

But it is the breadth of acting experience that has enabled David to branch out in so many directions. He has been a regular at the intimate fringe venue The Orange Tree Theatre in Richmond, London - most latterly performing Peachum in a fascinating re-working of The Beggar’s Opera by the Czech poet and former Prime Minister Vaclav Havel. He has appeared in films - including John le Carré’s The Russia House with Sean Connery.

Other theatrical work has been similarly diverse; in the 1980s he was part of the cast of Cliff Richard’s lavish musical Time for two years in over 700 performances. ‘It allowed me to buy my car,’ Timson laughs. Last year he performed at the Chichester Festival in Jean Anouilh's Wild Orchids which starred Patricia Routledge. ‘And I got to sing in that one - a song was written for me,’ he says with glee.

He has performed in many Shakespeare plays over the years, on radio and on stage. And it was this background, specifically, that made him able to turn his hand to directing the audio recording of King Richard III with Kenneth Branagh. The first play He directed for Naxos was Twelfth Night it was a particular favourite of his. The demands of radio/audiobook drama are so different to theatre, TV or film. The voices are paramount - the colour, the timbre, the character. ‘You have to forget about the physical person making those sounds. In reality, they can be small and thin, but the vocal character noble and dramatic. You have to know your actors - those who can readily play people 20 years adrift of their true age, and those who may be a star on stage or screen, but lack the experience or a, credible response to a radio mike.’

All this David brought to bear when, after Twelfth Night, Othello and Henry V,

In complete contrast Timson's production for Radio 3 was a classic 18th century English comedy - 'The Rivals' by Sheridan. Starring Patricia Routledge and Geoffrey Palmer it promised to bubble over with theatrical fun. It was broadcast on 25th September 2005. Timson began teaching at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art on a regular basis. Not surprisingly, Shakespeare and the theatre form a major part of his work. 'The enthusiasm of the students is infectious,' he says. Timson's diary continues to fill with ever more interesting projects. 'It makes the job so worthwhile: you never know what's round the corner,' he says.


Raymond Monty Raikes born 22nd September 1910 in south west London to a middle class family. His Father a West End theatre stage and set designer whilst his mother was an opera singer. He became estranged from her because she did not want him to go on the stage. He was educated at Lambrook, Radley and read classics at Exeter college Oxford. Soon after he went into rep at Stratford and from here returned to London and at the age of 22 in to his first film - the classic _Water Gypsies(1932)_ produced by Maurice Elvey.

Raymond produced and directed the B.B.C. radio series "Dick Barton secret agent" which ran from the late 1930s to the early seventies. One of his last productions was to produce and direct 'Sir Ian McKellen' in Henry VI as the Duke of Gloucester and The Duke of York in London in 1974.

He was the chairman of the library at the Garrick club in London. He was awarded a life membership in 1990. Raymond also had an award named after him by the B.B.C for amateur radio dramatics called the Raymond Raikes radio award. It is still awarded today.

Raymond was responsible for introducing stereophony onto Radio in the early '60s. He later tried quadrophony, which only now is taking off. He produced and directed legends such as 'Dame Peggy Ashcroft' , 'Sir Laurence Olivier' and 'Sir John Gielgud' .For a short while during the war Raymond was an Officer in the British Army.


Nothing Known


He was born on 16 February 1903 at 4 Milton Chambers, Chelsea, London, the son of Frank Shelley, a painter, and his wife, Alice Campbell, nee Glover. He took up stage acting on the advice of the actress and teacher Rosina Fillipi. His first appearance was at the Old Vic in 1919, and in the early 1920s he toured with the Charles Doran Shakespeare Company, in such parts as Trebonius in Julius Caesar and Sebastian in Twelfth Night. During the 20s and early 30s he worked principally in London, where he was most associated with Peter Godfrey's experimental productions at the Gate Theatre Studio.

Shelley first broadcast for the BBC in 1926, though he made his early radio reputation in Australia and New Zealand. He gradually shifted his interest from stage to radio, and in the late 30s he established a reputation as a respected and versatile British radio actor. In 1937 he married Monica Daphne, daughter of Harvey Edwin Brett. During the Second World War he was a member of the BBC's wartime repertory company, but left to serve as a ferry pilot in the Air Transport Auxiliary.

On stage Shelley was an intelligent and reliable supporting actor, often cast as a much older man. On radio, however, he was a leading man. In the 1930s and 1940s he was a Children's Hour regular, famous as Dennis the Dachsund in Toytown, and as Winnie-the-Pooh, whom he first played in 1939. He played Dr Watson to Carleton Hobbs's Sherlock Holmes over a 25 year period. In the 50s his parts ranged from Prospero in The Tempest, Johnson in J. B. Priestley's Johnson over Jordan, and Horace Lamb in Ivy Compton-Burnett's Manservant and Maidservant. He was a regular reader in Book at Bedtime. Late in life he found new fame as the courteous retired military gentleman Colonel Danby in the BBC radio serial The Archers. But perhaps his most celebrated performance was one that no one in Britain heard at the time: a recording of Winston Churchill's speech to the House of Commons of 4 June 1940 ('We will fight on the beaches ...') in the manner of Churchill himself, made for the British Council to use as propaganda material in the USA. Churchill had refused to reread his speech for a recording and suggested they 'get someone else to do it'; according to Shelley, Churchill was highly pleased with the result, commenting with approval: 'He's even got my teeth.' Apparently many American listeners believed they were listening to Churchill himself.

Shelley continued to work on stage and radio until his death, demonstrating his skill to the last. One of his first stage appearances had been with Ellen Terry; his last was in Tom Stoppard's Dirty Linen at the London Arts Theatre in 1979. He was still recording episodes of The Archers at the time of his death. He collapsed suddenly at Finchley Road tube station, London, on 21 August 1980, and was declared dead in the Royal Free Hospital, Camden. His wife had predeceased him; he was buried near her at Long Hanborough, Oxfordshire, on 28 August.

Shelley's impersonation of Churchill (just the once), has given rise to a certain amount of speculation about other occasions when he may or may not have performed similar tasks. Although there is no proof this ever happened there has been much media speculation about this subject.

THE KING'S SINGERS are well enough known not to require further comment here.


Rae Jenkins was regarded as the best conductor of light music in Britain - he had become a household name for his work on BBC comedy shows like ITMA.

compiled by Gil Swain / Diversity website

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