Home > Snippets > Garry Halliday

Whirligig Snippets

Garry Halliday

Just happened to google "Garry Halliday" tonight as I was an avid fan of the programme when I was a child. I was firstly very sorry to discover that Terence Longdon has died. Following from Garry Halliday he gradually became, it seemed to me, a very underrated actor. I last remember seeing him in a BBC series called "The Club", but, although he played the Club Secretary "the Commander", that character went "on leave" after the first episode and, to my knowledge, was never seen again.

Your account of "Garry Halliday" is unfortunately incomplete. There were more than three series. There were to my recollection seven series, or, more precisely, six serials and one series, the first three serials being in my opinion much the best, viz:-

Serial 1, where theVoice did indeed sit behind a two-way mirror and was to do with smuggling diamonds from Amsterdam
Serial 2, where the Voice was based in a house in the Lake District 100+ miles away from people seeing him. He viewed them through a sort of TV camera
Serial 3, where people seeing the voice saw a projection of his eyes and glasses on the wall. At the end of this series Garry Halliday saw the Voice's face for the first time, and this slightly spoilt it for me
Serial 4, where the Voice was based in, I think, Tripoli, and was interested in erasing any memory of his face that Garry Halliday might have had.
Series, this was a series of separate stories and the Voice did not feature in this series at all.
Serial 5, all I remember about this is that when this was made, Elwyn Brook Jones was ill and that was when the other actor (who's surname was, I think, Hamlyn) played the Voice. I certainly agree that he was not the same as EBJ.
Serial 6 Elwyn Brook Jones was back playing the Voice. I recall that the serial ended with a violent explosion, supposedly occurring where the Voice was currently located. However the very last thing seen was the Voice leaving the premises unscathed. I imagine that the intention was that further serials would be made but unfortunately Elwyn Brook Jones died and so no further serials were made and, of course, Doctor Who started shortly afterwards.

In its heyday "Garry Halliday" was the children's programme ("Blue Peter" being then either non-existent or otherwise probably in its embryonic ten-minute slot stage) such that the characters from the programme featured in at least one public service-type programme dispensing wholesome advice to children on some worthy topic.

I think as a totally sinister villain, Elwyn Brook Jones was unbeatable with his heavy glasses and menacing soft purring voice. He used to scare me, and my younger used to back out of the sitting room with his face buried in a cushion whenever the Voice appeared. I presume that the photo on the right of your page is of Elwyn Brook Jones, but not, I think, as the Voice as he is not wearing those glasses (unless the picture was taken from the first series or the first episode of the second series which I did not see. I first chanced upon GH in the second episode of the second series, but I subsequently read the book of the first series).

Whilst the programme was never quite the same after Garry Halliday finally saw the Voice's face I was sorry that the programme ended in the way that it did. In my opinion, and I realise that this is probably blasphemy, the Doctor Who programmes were nothing like as good as certainly the first three series of Garry Halliday, and I could never take the Daleks etc seriously.

Finally, thanks for constructing your page, which has enabled me to indulge in some pleasant nostalgia.

Chris Green

Return to Snippets Index

If you have any comments or further information of interest, please e-mail snippets@whirligig-tv.co.uk