The Tales of Para Handy

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Not to be confused with The Vital Spark. ‹See Tfd›

The Tales of Para Handy is a Scottish television series set in the western isles of Scotland in the 1930s, based on the Para Handy books by Neil Munro. It starred Gregor Fisher as Captain Peter "Para Handy" MacFarlane, Sean Scanlan as first mate Dougie Cameron, Rikki Fulton as engineer Dan Macphail and Andrew Fairlie as Sunny Jim. These four made up the crew of the puffer 'Vital Spark' which was employed by the Campbell Shipping Company, headquartered in Glasgow and run by Andrew Campbell (Paul Young), Para Handy's brother-in-law and owner of the Vital Spark.

The series followed the Vital Spark's adventures around the coastal waters of west Scotland and the various schemes that Para Handy would get himself and his crew involved in. These involved transporting a bull aboard the Vital Spark, trying to marry Sunny Jim off, avoiding the sale of the Vital Spark by Campbell and being held hostage at gunpoint by a religious nutter.

Most of the guest stars in the series were well known faces in Scottish comedy and had starred in the sitcom Rab C. Nesbitt, which also stars Gregor Fisher in the title role. An episode of the second series, 'Para Handy's Piper', guest starred future Tenth Doctor David Tennant in one of his early acting roles.

It ran from 1994 to 1995 on BBC One, a total of nine episodes.

The first six episodes were officially released on VHS. The series has not yet been released on DVD.

Cast[edit]

Episodes[edit]

Season 1

Episode Title Original airdate
1 "Para Handy, Master Mariner" 31 July 1994 (1994-07-31)
2 "Para Handy, Poacher" 7 August 1994 (1994-08-07)
3 "Salvage!" 14 August 1994 (1994-08-14)
4 "A Night Alarm" 21 August 1994 (1994-08-21)
5 "The End of the World" 28 August 1994 (1994-08-28)
6 "A Treasure Trove" 4 September 1994 (1994-09-04)

Season 2

Episode Title Original airdate
1 "The Fortune Teller" 31 July 1995 (1995-07-31)
2 "Para Handy's Piper" 7 August 1995 (1995-08-07)
3 "The Malingerer" 21 August 1995 (1995-08-21)


External links[edit]