Godfrey Baseley

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Godfrey Baseley (2 October 1904 – 2 February 1997), was a radio executive, who is most famous as being the creator of the soap opera The Archers.

He was educated at Bootham School,[1][2] York.

Before creating The Archers, he had previous experience in making over radio programmes about farming, mainly for the Midland region. However, after being inspired by the idea of another radio programme at the time Dick Barton - Special Agent, he decided to create a farming show with a narrative.

Baseley had tried to write a story, but later threw it away. The story was however saved by his secretary. He then threw it away again, and later contacted a meeting with two Dick Barton writers, Ted Mason and Geoffrey Webb. After telling him some detailed biographies of the characters, Mason and Webb wrote the first Archers script. The pilot programme was broadcast to the English Midlands on Whit Monday, 1950, and was first broadcast across the UK on the BBC Home Service on January 1, 1951.

In the late 1960s Baseley took part in The Archers himself as an actor, playing the part of Brigadier Winstanley, although billed in the Radio Times under a pseudonym.


  1. ^ Oxford Dictionary of National Biography
  2. ^ Bootham School Register. York, England: BOSA. 2011.  |first1= missing |last1= in Authors list (help)

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