|First appearance||Send for Paul Temple (1938)|
|Created by||Francis Durbridge|
|Portrayed by||Carl Bernard
Howard Marion Crawford
Paul Temple is a fictional character created by British writer Francis Durbridge (1912–1998) for the BBC radio serial Send for Paul Temple in 1938. Temple is an amateur private detective and author of crime fiction. Together with his journalist wife (Louise Temple, née Harvey, affectionately known as "Steve" after her pen name "Steve Trent"), he solves "whodunnit" crimes with subtle, humorous dialogue and rare "action". Always the gentleman, his use of the phrase "by Timothy" was the nearest he ever got to swearing. Since 1938, the Temples have featured in over 30 BBC radio dramas, 12 serials for German radio, a BBC television series, four British feature films and several novels. In the Netherlands several of the radio plays were recorded with Dutch actors and with the main character's name translated to 'Paul Vlaanderen '. In addition, a Paul Temple comic strip featured in the London Evening News from the mid-1950s to the early 1960s.
British Paul Temple radio serials
Paul Temple was "born" as a radio detective. In Britain, several Paul Temple radio series were broadcast from the 1930s to the 1960s. While several actors and actresses portrayed the Temples over the years, including the Send for Paul Temple Again series which starred Barry Morse and aired in 1945, probably the best known portrayal of the couple was by Peter Coke and Marjorie Westbury. The introductory and closing music for the majority of the long-running BBC radio series was Coronation Scot (a musical depiction of a train journey) composed by Vivian Ellis; the earliest serials, those aired prior to December 1947, used an excerpt from Scheherazade by Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov. Most of the surviving serials starring Coke and Westbury have been repeated since 2003 by digital radio station BBC Radio 7 (now called BBC Radio 4 Extra). In 2006 the station tracked down the then 93-year-old Coke for a half-hour interview programme, Peter Coke and the Paul Temple Affair.
In August 2006 BBC Radio 4 broadcast a new 8-part production recreating one of the lost early radio serials, Paul Temple and the Sullivan Mystery, which had aired in 1947; Crawford Logan starred as Paul Temple with Gerda Stevenson as Steve (in place of the original leads, Kim Peacock and Marjorie Westbury) in a mono production employing vintage microphones and sound effects. A new production of The Madison Mystery followed between May and July 2008, and a remake of the 1947 serial Paul Temple and Steve aired in June and July 2010. A remake of A Case for Paul Temple began transmission on 24 August 2011, and was released on CD in October 2011. In early 2013, the BBC re recorded Paul Temple and the Gregory Affair, broadcast later in the year and released on CD September 2013.
Paul Temple's catchphrase "by Timothy" originated with the character of Miss Amelia Victoria Parchment, an elderly spinster, as she spoke the final words in the book Send for Paul Temple.
Paul Temple wasn't a detective in any recognised sense. Deduction didn't take place. Events simply occurred, people were met and spoken to, and murder attempts were survived. Then, in the final episode, Temple would arrange a drinks party, or similar, at which the villain would be revealed. Finally, Paul, Steve and Sir Graham Forbes would hold a post mortem, which would usually leave listeners no wiser as to why certain events in the serial had taken place, which of them had been red herrings and which had been unclarified clues.
|Serial title||Starring||Original broadcast dates ||Episodes||Archive status |
|Send for Paul Temple||Hugh Morton as Paul Temple and Bernadette Hodgson as Steve Trent (AKA Louise Harvey)||8 April—27 May 1938 (BBC Midland region only)||8 x 25 minutes||1-5 & 7-8 lost, 6 exists|
|Paul Temple and the Front Page Men||Hugh Morton as Paul Temple and Bernadette Hodgson as Steve||1 November—21 December 1938 (BBC Midland region only)||8 x 25 minutes||1-7 lost, 8 exists|
|News of Paul Temple||Hugh Morton as Paul Temple and Bernadette Hodgson as Steve||13 November—18 December 1939||6 x 25 minutes||All lost|
|Send for Paul Temple (abridged remake)||Carl Bernard as Paul Temple and Thea Holme as Steve||13 October 1941||1 x 60 minutes||Lost|
|Paul Temple Intervenes||Carl Bernard as Paul Temple and Bernadette Hodgson as Steve||30 October—18 December 1942||8 x 20 minutes||Exists in full|
|News of Paul Temple (abridged remake)||Richard Williams as Paul Temple and Lucille Lisle as Steve||5 July 1944||1 x 60 minutes||Lost|
|Send for Paul Temple Again||Barry Morse as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||13 September—1 November 1945||8 x 30 minutes||All lost|
|A Case for Paul Temple||Howard Marion Crawford as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||7 February—28 March 1946||8 x 30 minutes||All lost|
|Paul Temple and the Gregory Affair||Kim Peacock as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||17 October—19 December 1946||10 x 30 minutes||All lost|
|Paul Temple and Steve||Kim Peacock as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||30 March—18 May 1947||8 x 30 Minutes||All lost|
|Mr. & Mrs. Paul Temple (abridged remake of Paul Temple and Steve)||Kim Peacock as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||23 November 1947||1 x 45 minutes||Lost|
|Paul Temple and the Sullivan Mystery||Kim Peacock as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||1 December 1947—19 January 1948||8 x 30 minutes||All lost |
|Paul Temple and the Curzon Case||Kim Peacock as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||7 December 1948—25 January 1949||8 x 30 minutes||All lost|
|Paul Temple and the Madison Mystery||Kim Peacock as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||12 October—30 November 1949||8 x 30 minutes||All lost|
|Paul Temple and the Vandyke Affair||Kim Peacock as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||30 October—18 December 1950||8 x 30 minutes||Exists in full (Not retained by BBC, but archived at the British Library)|
|Paul Temple and the Jonathan Mystery||Kim Peacock as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||10 May—28 June 1951||8 x 30 minutes||All lost|
|Paul Temple and Steve Again||Kim Peacock as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||8 April 1953||1 x 60 minutes||Lost|
|Paul Temple and the Gilbert Case||Peter Coke as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||29 March—17 May 1954||8 x 30 minutes||Exists in full (this is the version available on CD/cassette from the BBC Radio Collection)|
|Paul Temple and the Madison Mystery (remake)||Peter Coke as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||20 June—8 August 1955||8 x 30 Minutes||All lost|
|Paul Temple and the Lawrence Affair||Peter Coke as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||11 April—30 May 1956||8 x 30 minutes||Exists in full|
|Paul Temple and the Spencer Affair||Peter Coke as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||13 November 1957—1 January 1958||8 x 30 minutes||Exists in full|
|Paul Temple and the Vandyke Affair (remake)||Peter Coke as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||1 January—19 February 1959||8 x 30 minutes||Exists in full|
|Paul Temple and the Conrad Case||Peter Coke as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||2 March—20 April 1959||8 x 30 minutes||Exists in full|
|Paul Temple and the Gilbert Case (remake)||Peter Coke as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||22 November 1959—10 January 1960||8 x 30 minutes||Exists in full|
|Paul Temple and the Margo Mystery||Peter Coke as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||1 January—19 February 1961||8 x 30 minutes||Exists in full|
|Paul Temple and the Jonathan Mystery (remake)||Peter Coke as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||14 October—2 December 1963||8 x 30 minutes||Exists in full|
|Paul Temple and the Geneva Mystery||Peter Coke as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||11 April—16 May 1965||6 x 30 minutes||Exists in full|
|Paul Temple and the Alex Affair (remake of Send for Paul Temple Again, with name of villain changed from "Rex" to "Alex")||Peter Coke as Paul Temple and Marjorie Westbury as Steve||26 February—21 March 1968||8 x 30 minutes||Exists in full|
|Paul Temple and the Sullivan Mystery (remake)||Crawford Logan as Paul Temple and Gerda Stevenson as Steve||7 August—2 October 2006||8 x 30 minutes||Exists in full|
|Paul Temple and the Madison Mystery (remake)||Crawford Logan as Paul Temple and Gerda Stevenson as Steve||16 May—4 July 2008||8 x 30 minutes||Exists in full|
|Paul Temple and Steve (remake)||Crawford Logan as Paul Temple and Gerda Stevenson as Steve||11 June—30 July 2010||8 x 30 minutes||Exists in full|
|A Case for Paul Temple (remake)||Crawford Logan as Paul Temple and Gerda Stevenson as Steve||24 August—12 October 2011||8 x 30 minutes||Exists in full|
|Paul Temple and the Gregory Affair (remake)||Crawford Logan as Paul Temple and Gerda Stevenson as Steve||3 July— 11 September 2013||10 x 30 minutes||Exists in full|
Paul Temple on film
Between 1946 and 1952 Paul Temple appeared in four feature films distributed by Butcher's Film Service (a film distributor based in the North of England, which also distributed films in the Old Mother Riley series of Northern comedies).
- 1946 Send for Paul Temple with Anthony Hulme (1910–2007) (born Harry Idris Miller) as Temple, Joy Shelton as Steve and Maire O'Neill as Mrs Neddy.
- 1948 Calling Paul Temple (based on Send for Paul Temple Again) with John Bentley as Temple and Dinah Sheridan as Steve.
- 1950 Paul Temple's Triumph (based on News of Paul Temple) with John Bentley as Temple and Dinah Sheridan as Steve.
- 1952 Paul Temple Returns (based on Paul Temple Intervenes) with John Bentley as Temple and Patricia Dainton as Steve.
German Paul Temple radio serials
In Germany, 12 Paul Temple novels were adapted as radio serials between 1949 and 1967, each episode (in common with the BBC serials) ending with a cliffhanger. They were listened to by such huge numbers of people that they earned the sobriquet Straßenfeger ("street sweepers"), because they left the streets practically deserted whenever an episode was broadcast. They were performed by actors of national renown, including Luxembourg-born René Deltgen (who played the title role in 11 of the 12 series), Gustav Knuth, and Paul Klinger amongst others. Almost all the German radio serials have since been released on CD as audiobooks. Two short-lived comic series by the Aachener Bildschriftenverlag and the Luna-Kriminalromane are rare collector's items.
British television series
Durbridge licensed the character to the BBC, which from 1969 made 64 one hour television episodes, in colour, starring Francis Matthews as Paul Temple, co-starring Ros Drinkwater as his wife Steve, with George Sewell. 52 of the episodes of the Paul Temple television series were co-produced with West German television station ZDF, making it the very first international co-production of the TV era, thereby making it practicable to film location scenes for the series in West Germany.
The co-produced episodes were dubbed into German, using German voice artists, for broadcasting in West Germany. Many of these dubbed episodes survive in the ZDF archives, in colour, but without any English language soundtracks. Only 11 colour episodes with English soundtracks were retained by the BBC.
Many of the British Paul Temple radio serials were novelized by Francis Durbridge between 1938 and 1989. Some of the novels in which the character appears were written in collaboration with John Thewes, Douglas Rutherford or Charles Hatten – and those with Rutherford were even published under the pen-name "Paul Temple", thus making the fictional writer a "real" one.
- Send for Paul Temple (1938), Anthony Head (2007)*
- Paul Temple and the Front Page Men (1939), Anthony Head (2009)*
- News of Paul Temple (1940), Anthony Head (2008)*
- Paul Temple Intervenes (1944), Toby Stephens (2011)*
- Send for Paul Temple Again! (1948)
- The Tyler Mystery (1957), Anthony Head (2006)*
- East of Algiers (1959), Anthony Head (2009)* - based on the Sullivan Mystery but with locations and character names altered
- Paul Temple and the Harkdale Robbery (1970), Anthony Head (2007)*
- Paul Temple and the Kelby Affair (1970), Anthony Head (2007)*
- The Geneva Mystery (1971), Toby Stephens (2011)*
- The Curzon Case (1972), Anthony Head (2006)*
- Paul Temple and the Margot Mystery (1986), Toby Stephens (2011)
- Paul Temple and the Madison Case (1988)
- Paul Temple and the Conrad Case (1989)
(*) Indicates also released as an audiobook on CD, read by Anthony Head or Toby Stephens
All the complete surviving Paul Temple UK radio serials (with the exception of the 1959 remake of Paul Temple and the Gilbert Case) have been released on CD by the BBC Radio Collection.
The 11 surviving colour episodes of the BBC-TV version of "Paul Temple" featuring Francis Matthews and Ros Drinkwater were released on DVD on 6 July 2009 by Acorn Media UK. A further 5 Black and White episodes were released in April 2012. Many unreleased colour episodes still exist in the archives of ZDF, the series' German co-producer, with soundtrack in German.
In 2010 Renown Pictures Ltd, new owners of The Butchers Library, released on DVD the feature films Send For Paul Temple, Paul Temple Returns (a.k.a. 'Bombay Waterfront') and Calling Paul Temple.
In 2011 a box set of all four Paul Temple movies was released in November. The film "Paul Temples Triumph" was released singly to Renown Club members only in March 2012.
- Paul Temple: The Radio Shows, The Original Old Time Radio WWW Pages
- The rumour that recordings of this serial have been found is entirely false. It arose when an American collector heard a recording of the BBC's 2006 re-make of this lost serial.
- Renown Pictures Limited
- The Paul Temple File
- Francis Durbridge Homepage: Paul Temple (Radio, TV, Books) (German)
- Paul Temple
-  Anthony Hulme Obituary