1hr 31mins
Dir: Dick Clement
Starring: Tom Courtenay and Romy Schneider

A London drifter gets involved with spies and murderers

This comedy thriller was adapted from Martin Waddell’s 1968 book of the same name and has quite a few railway shots throughout. In one scene, Tom Courtenay asks for a newspaper in Gatwick Airport from a stall overlooking the A23 road. A train is running on the adjacent railway line, but it is indistinguishable due to the low sun. Later, Tom Courtenay is interrogated at a disused railway station. This is Quainton Road on the ex-Metropolitan and Great Central Line just before the preservationists moved in to set up the Buckinghamshire Railway Centre. There is also a suspense scene involving a suitcase switch at a London Underground station. This is meant to take place at Notting Hill Gate and although the ticket hall, escalators and interchange concourse seen are those of that location, the platform scenes were actually filmed at Bank station on the Waterloo & City Line, suitably dressed as a London Transport station. The W&C Line had been built by the London and South Western Railway in 1898, and after Southern Railway and BR ownership, was not transferred to the London Underground until 1994, hence the need for a disguise. This is, however, a rare instance of both BR and LT locations being used to represent the same location. An English Electric 1940-built Class 487 unit is departing in one shot at Bank. Finally, during a car chase Tom Courtenay enters the former White City milk depot, and there are brief glimpses of a coal train passing along the embankment of the West London Line in the background, though no locomotive is seen. Later during this sequence, a Metropolitan Line train of London Underground CO stock is visible passing over Latimer Road viaduct.

The remarkably intact yet near derelict Quainton Road station near Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire.
Romy Schneider and James Villiers on the platform at Quainton Road
The ticket hall of Notting Hill Gate on the Central Line
This is Bank on the Waterloo & City Line and a Class 487 EMU is just departing
This shot shows the lengths to which Bank was dressed up as Notting Hill Gate, complete with Central Line route branding (thanks to Nick Copper’s London Underground on Film website for these three shots)
This is the former White City Unigate milk depot and a coal train can be seen passing on the embankment of the West London line above the red van
In the background of this view one can clearly see a Metropolitan Line train formed of the classic red CO stock