Dir: Jim O’Connolly
Starring: Peter Vaughan and Yvonne Romain
A fastidious insurance assessor is sent to Brighton to investigate a potential case of fraud which turns out to be murder
This brilliant crime thriller features a couple of scenes at Brighton station and some good shots of Hellingly station on the Polegate-Eridge line. This route closed in 1965 and despite the fact that Hellingly (pronounced Helling-lye) was spruced up for filming it still looks decidedly tatty. There are some excellent shots of the station and clearly visible in some is one of the 3-car stop marks put in on this line for the Class 207 (or 3D ‘Oxted’) diesel-electric units. Deryck Guyler plays the stationmaster, porter, and ticket collector all in one and there is some brilliant continuity on the part of the production team. When Peter Vaughan turns up inquiring as to his whereabouts he is initial mistaken by Guyler as being a ‘brass hat’ from head office. He then begins to lament that his station and the whole line is closing down through lack of money. The following year, it did. Real cost cutting measures did indeed see the stationmaster take on all roles in order to cut costs. The station is referred to throughout by its real name and though no trains feature in the station scenes, the whole is a very carefully thought out sequence. Just before all this there is a shot of the only train to appear in the film, a distant view of a 2 BIL EMU passing along the flat open marshland of the Ouse Valley, just after passing Southerham Junction on its way from Newhaven and Seaford.