The Standard
BBC 1978
Golden Boy
TX : 4th April 1978
Director : Paddy Russell
Script : Anthony Read

Cast : Jan Wilson (Moira Craig), Jerome Willis (Jeremy Longmuir), Bill Denniston (Archie), Patrick Joyce (Dougie Clarke), Philip Crowther (The Pilot) and Paul Barnard (The Public Relations Man).

Synopsis :
The Scottish Daily Standard has big problems: it is losing money fast, so the Lockwood Newspaper Group send one of their troubleshooters, Peter Dawson, to Glasgow to investigate - and he is not welcome…

Notes :
Episodes were originally transmitted 8:10pm to 9:00pm on BBC 1.

Houseparty At Kildun
TX : 11th April 1978
Director : Roderick Graham
Script : Lew Schwartz

Cast : Alec Monteath, Nicholas Coppin, Alex McAvoy, Finlay Welsh, Carol Metcalf, Phil McCall, Ken Henderson and Freddie Boardley.

Synopsis :
Colin Anderson teams up with a rival reporter to investigate a mysterious country mansion and discovers most of the intrigue is on his own doorstep.

Come To The Revolution
TX : 18th April 1978
Director : Carol Wiseman
Script : Cliff Hanley

Cast : Martin Neil, Roddy McMillan, Charles Kearney, Leon Sinden, Sheila Latimer, Barney Galpern, James Copeland, Jan Wilson, Charlie Sim, Michael Elder, Bill Henderson and Nicholas Coppin.

Synopsis :
Against Felicity's wishes, Colin Anderson uses his own unorthodox methods to counteract a sinister outside influence which threatens the future of The Standard.

De Mortuis
TX : 25th April 1978
Director : Bob McIntosh
Script : Lindsay Galloway

Cast : Jan Wilson, Sarah Lawson, Rose McBain and Martin Heller.

Synopsis :
Alex Forsyth and Colin Anderson each uncover flaws in the façade of one of the Editor's closest friends, who is dying, and Kendal has to decide where his loyalties lie.

Death Of A Pink Elephant
TX : 2nd May 1978
Director :
Bob McIntosh
Script : Tom Wright

Cast : Callum Mill, John Breslin, Maev Alexander, Brown Derby, Jean Bruce, Boyd Nelson, Alec Haggie and James Kennedy.

Synopsis :
Colin Anderson and Peter Dawson go to investigate an illegal seal-cull on a remote Scottish island, but find themselves threatened with the same fate as the seals.

Win A Few, Lose A Few
TX : 9th May 1978
Director :
John Bruce
Script : Sean Hignett

Cast : Ron Bain, Rose McBain, Bill Denniston, Martin Heller, John Murtagh, Dave Anderson, Morag Phillips, Ken Hutchison, Gerald Wallace and Dorothy Dean.

Synopsis :
Anderson's private and professional lives get entangled when he snatches a "hot property" from under the noses of the national press.

The Name Of The Game
TX : 16th May 1978
Director :
Paddy Russell
Script : Peter May and Alastair Balfour

Cast : Roddy McMillan, Jan Wilson, Victor Carin, Arthur Boland, Iain Cuthbertson, Frederick Jaeger, E J P Mace, Bill Denniston and Jim Byars.

Synopsis :
Peter Dawson fights a battle with the London Board of Directors, but this time it's his own survival which is at stake.

Strictly Confidential
TX : 23rd May 1978
Director :
Paddy Russell
Script : Cliff Hanley

Cast : Bill Denniston, Gerald Kelly, Victor Carin, Jan Wilson, Robert Docherty, Bill Riddoch, Colin Brown and Mary Ann Reid.

Synopsis :
A young trainee reporter finds himself in big trouble when he leaks an "exclusive" to a rival newspaper - but discovers who his friends are.

Two Birds, One Stone
TX : 30th May 1968
Director :
Michael Hayes
Script : Nick McCarty

Cast : David Hargreaves, Robert Hamilton, Jack Watson, Roy Hanlon, Moray Watson, Godfrey James, Shane Rimmer and Frank Duncan.

Synopsis :
Colin Anderson goes to investigate a rumoured oil leak in the North Sea and finds himself threatened on all sides.

Notes : This episode was delayed by one week to allow BBC Television to transmit a World Cup match in its place on May 30th, 1978.

Bread And Circuses
TX : 6th June 1978
Director :
Tom Cotter
Script : Eric MacDonald

Cast : Isobel Gardner, Betty Gillin, Rose McBain and Jean Faulds.

Synopsis :
A woman recounting the harrowing details of a murder makes Anderson wonder if the policy of "giving the people what they want" is justified.

Silence Is Golden
TX : 13th June 1978
Director :
Christopher Baker
Script : Sean Hignett

Cast : Russell Hunter, Edith MacArthur, John Casey, Richard Matthews, Ron Paterson and Peter Kelly.

Synopsis :
Colin Anderson's refusal to reveal his sources in Court leads to friction within The Standard - and a loss of freedom for him!

A Fair Exchange
TX : 20th June 1978
Director :
Roderick Graham
Script : Alastair Balfour and Peter May

Cast : Wolf Kahler, Victor Carin, Paul Kermack, Jay Smith, Derek Anders, Rose McBain, William Armour, Jan Wilson, Tom Watson, Raymond Boyd and Iain Glas.

Synopsis :
Colin Anderson tries to help an East German footballer to defect - and finds himself being used as a pawn in a political game.

New Standards
TX : 4th July 1978
Director :
Roger Bamford
Script : Anthony Read

Cast : Victor Carin, Harry Walker, Rose McBain, Tammy Ustinov, James Cosmo, Brian Carey, David Peate, Jillianne Foot and Kate Matheson.

Synopsis :
Colin Anderson goes to West Berlin to follow up a story and Peter Dawson goes to Norway to ensure that there will be something for it to be printed on!

Portrayed By
Margaret Sedgley
Marian McLoughlin
Peter Sedgley
Sebastian Abineri
Dilip Satsu
Ian Apsinall
Lin Ling Tian
Adrian Pang
Simon Slater
The Surgeon
Peter Penry-Jones
The Anaesthetist
Nick Lucas
The Profusionist
Gareth Armstrong
Max Gold
Man In The Shadow
Philip De Souza
Eamon Boland
Mrs Lawson
Diana Payan
Doctor Manville
Leader Hawkins
Nancy Manville
Gabrielle Lloyd
Hugh Lyle
Vincent Marzello
Professor Hartley
John Hartley
Oxford Chairman
James Curran
Scrub Nurse
Virginia Denham
Young Doctor
Mark Webb
The First Devlin Consultant
Geoffrey Drew
The Second Devlin Consultant
Chris Matthews
The Third Devlin Consultant
Rowland Davies
Tom Karol
Doctor Zhao Quing
Sylvia Chang
Wan Pu
Pao Han Lin
Doctor Chen
Stuart Ong
Hi Ching
Doctor Bao
Tony Xu
Junior Registrar
Jason Hall
Interview Chairman
Myles Hoyle
Mr Bower Kemp
Terence Kemp
Andrew Melville
Gordon Griffin
Mrs Youngman
Brenda Cavendish
Miriam Leake
The L.T.U Consultant
James Vaughan
The B.M.I Consultant
Peter Gale
The Liverpool Chairman
Frank Moorey

Devised and created by Peter May and Alastair Balfour for BBC Scotland, The Standard concerned The Daily Scottish Standard Newspaper, and their fight for survival amidst flagging sales, a downturn in advertising revenue and a fluctuating readership. In a similar vein to Stephen Greenhorn's comedy-drama series Glasgow Kiss (transmitted on BBC Television in 2000), the London-based management team, Lockwood Newspaper Group, dispatched a financial whiz-kid in the shape of Peter Dawson (Neil Stacy) to assess whether to newspaper could afford to continue its operations, whether those operations required staff cutbacks and a variety of other changes in order to make it more profitable.

Needless to say, his arrival amidst a hectic newsroom was far from welcomed. Having assessed the viability of the Scottish operations, and realising that far from requiring severe cutbacks, all the newspaper required was a direction in which to forge and thus thrive, he became a working member of the editorial team in a bid to save the newspaper he came to put to the sword.

Of course, nothing in life is ever that simple, and Dawson was soon recalled to London to explain his actions and, in effect, fight for his own position within the organisation, midway through the series of thirteen fifty-minute episodes. However, this storyline remained a back-drop to the more pertinent stories which moved to the forefront of the series: Scottish journalists investigating and reporting on the issues which mattered to the local community, whilst the editorial staff and those of a higher persuasion wrangled for higher revenue and increased readership.

Patrick Malahide (Colin Anderson), Colette O'Neil (Felicity Grant) and Tom Watson (Alex Forsythe) formed the primary journalistic staff, overseen by wily editor James Kendal (Gerry Slevin). The series was produced by Scotsman Roderick Graham, with notable directorial turns from a varierty of Scottish directors.

The series was a determined effort to present something other than the standard medical-police-period drama series, and this in part succeeded as the series sustained modest ratings figures throughout its duration. However, the series was never exported nor commercially released.

Text © Matthew Lee, 2003.

The series was devised, created and written by Peter May and Alastair Balfour and produced by Roderick Graham. Script Editor for the series was Maggie Allen