This release features a wide range of extracts, all on the subject of health. Contributions are from Jo Brand, Rowan Atkinson, Michael Bentine and Groucho Marx. The Tony Hancock contribution is a slightly edited version of The Blood Donor, although the booklet states that the track is :The Radio Ham!
The CD and cassette release from The Speaking Book Company contains 22 comedy extracts from a wide range of artists and programmes. Including Hugh Laurie, Rowan Atkinson Hugh Laurie and Harry Enfield from recent times and vintage tracks from Peter Cook & Dudley Moore, and Tony Hancock. The Tony Hancock extract was a 2 1/2 minute segment from The Blood Donor starting with the moment he goes in to the Doctor.
This double cassette / triple CD release runs for nearly three hours and is a celebration of the broadcasting legacy of Brian Johnston. Commentating for The Test Match Special or the boat race, reporting for In Town Tonight or presenting Down Your Way, playing games on Twenty Questions or Trivia Test Match and describing Royal events like the Coronation or the marriage of the Prince and Princess of Wales, all are included here. All of the extracts were selected by Brian's son Barry. This involved some detective work to uncover the full range of broadcasts that Brian made. So why is this release in a listing of releases featuring Hancock? Because in January 1955, Brian Johnston appeared as the commentator in the Hancock's Half Hour Series 1 Episode 'The Monte Carlo Rally'. This release features 2 ¬Ω minutes from this show featuring Brian's commentary. The sleeve notes state that Barry found the extract from Hancock's Half Hour on a cassette in a shoebox at the back of Brian's wardrobe!
Issued free with Top Gear Magazine, this release was used to advertise the double cassette and double CD release Top Gear Classic Comedy. The cassette featured 9 tracks including Ben Elton, Peter Cook, Fawlty Towers and One Foot In The Grave. The Hancock extract was entitled buying a car and featured a 1 ¬Ω minute extract from the radio episode The New Car featuring Sid trying to sell Hancock a really ancient car and Andree asking whether you can still get the wicks for the lamps!
Introduced by Jeremy Clarkson, this double cassette or double CD released in 1995 featured a wide range of comedy performances from the BBC archives all on the subject of motoring. The 37 extracts featured artists from Peter Cook and Al Read through to Ben Elton and Harry Enfield. There was 1 extract from Hancock's Half Hour on tape 1 entitled Buying A Car. This was a 2 minute extract from The New Car (starting from Hancock's visit to Sid's yard). On Tape 2, there were 2 extracts from Hancock's Half Hour entitled Hancock's Warning and The Car Chase. These were a 4 ¬Ω minute extract from Hancock's Car (the section when the Policeman visits and asks Hancock to 'move it'!) and a 5 minute extract from The Jewel Robbery (starting from when Sid throws a brick through the jeweller's window having collected Hancock's new car). This was an excellent release with great commentary from Jeremy Clarkson between the extracts.
The seventh release in this excellent series featured four more complete episodes from the BBC archives. These were Hancock's Happy Christmas, The Emigrant, Hancock's School and Hancock's Car. Originally released in 1995, in common with the rest of the series, a new cover was produced for the 2000 release, as illustrated.
Hosted by Radio 2 presenter Ken Bruce, this 1995 release was an introduction to material available from the BBC Radio Collection. Featuring 14 tracks, more modern material included Blackadder, Yes Prime Minister and Fawlty Towers, whilst from the archive came Round The Horne, The Navy Lark and The Goon Show. Tony Hancock started the cassette with a 4 minute extract from Sids Mystery Tours starting from Tony reading the coach tour adverts in the paper.
Released in 1996, Volume 8 of this popular series featured another four complete episodes from the archives. As with previous releases, some of the close out music was faded out rather than included in full. A new front cover was released in 2000 and this is also illustrated. Episodes featured were The Bequest, The Conjuror, The Publicity Photograph and The Grappling Game.
This release from 1996 is a double cassette featuring a wide range of artists including Sid James, Kenneth Williams, Peter Cook, Stanley Holloway and Stanley Baxter. The Tony Hancock section features a 4 minute extract from The Reunion Party (Decca recording) starting at the beginning of the episode and ending at the point Tony leaves the off licence.
This release from 1996 is a double cassette featuring a wide range of artists including Marty Feldman, Peter Cook, Stanley Holloway and Sandy Powell. The Tony Hancock section features a 5 minute 40 second extract from The Missing Page (Decca Recording) starting at the beginning of the episode and ending at the point Tony and Sid are thrown out of the library.
This release served as advert for Radio 4 and is believed to have been given away free although it's not clear what with! The release features 12 tracks including a diverse range of comedy from Hitch-Hikers Guide To The Galaxy and Knowing Me Knowing You to I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue and Just A Minute. The Hancock extract is part of the Test Pilot sequence from The Diary starting with Hattie as the Air Traffic Controller asking Hancock to 'land immediately and finishing with Kenneth landing on the tail.
Released in 1997, Volume 9 featured The 13th Of The Series, The Wild Man Of The Woods, The Junk Man and Bill and Father Christmas. The Wild Man Of The Woods had previously been released on the first Pye LP, 'This Is Hancock' in heavily edited form but this was the first release of this show by the BBC.
Running for over two hours, this celebration of June Whitfield's career with the BBC includes extracts from a wide range of programmes including The Glums, Beggar My Neighbour, The News Huddlines, Terry & June and, of course, Absolutely Fabulous. There are 2 extracts from Hancock's Half Hour. A 1 min extract from the Blood Donor starting from the beginning to the moment June as the nurse starts 'to take a few particulars and a 2 minute extract from The Succession -Son & Heir starting with Tony asking June where children come in her scheme of things.
Released in 1997 to celebrate 75 years of the BBC, this release, which was also available on CD, traced the history of the BBC with archive recordings from the original first announcement in 1923 through to Spoonface Steinberg from 1997. Very few comedy extracts found their way on to this release but those that did included The Goon Show, Round The Horne, I'm Sorry, I'll Read That Again and The Hitch-Hikers Guide To The Galaxy. The Hancock's Half Hour extract was a 1 ¬Ω minute extract from The Diary, The Test Pilot sequence starting from 'Hancock Calling Control Tower'.
The final release in this series was issued in 1998. Episodes featured were Agricultural Hancock, The New Secretary, The Insurance Policy and The Election Candidate. By the end of this series 38 radio and 2 television episodes had been made available to the public to purchase. The advent of the CD at about this time and BBC experimental releases to see whether radio shows on CD would be commercially viable led, eventually, to the release of every single radio episode on CD. A far cry from the 60's and 70s when very little was available! However, further cassette releases were still to be made.
Introduced by Russell Davies and featuring artists from BBC 3's Turns Of The Century, this release from 1988 included a wide variety of artists, including Tommy Cooper, Flanders and Swann, Max Wall, Beryl Reid, Stanley Holloway, Hylda Baker, Ken Dodd, Sandy Powell, Morecambe and Wise, Jimmy James, The Crazy Gang and many more. The Hancock extract was from his Royal Variety Show performance of 1952.
Only available on cassette, this release from 1999 featured the best of Hancock's Half Hour. Side1 was the complete first radio show: The First Night Party and side 2 featured extracts from radio half hours (The Diary, Almost A Gentleman, The Wild Man Of The Woods, The Publicity Photograph, Hancock's Car and A Sunday Afternoon At Home). Side 3 featured extracts from television half hours (The Knighthood, Twelve Angry Men, The Cold, The Missing Page, The Emigrant, The Ladies Man, The Bowmans, The Radio Ham and The Blood Donor). Side 4 was the complete final television episode The Succession - Son and Heir.
Released in 1999, this 4-cassette release featured 8 complete radio shows from the 1950s. The release was part of a series featuring shows from the 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s. Only available on cassette, the shows featured were Take It From Here, Rays A Laugh, Educating Archie, Life With The Lyons, The Al Read Show, The Goon Show (The Mysterious Punch Up The Conker), The Clitheroe Kid (Clitheroe and The Hound Dog) and Hancock's Half Hour (A Sunday Afternoon At Home). A boxed set of all of the cassettes from this series (50's, 60's, 70's and 80's) was released under number 0563 55220-4
Released in 2003 on both cassette and CD, this Marks and Spencer exclusive was effectively a re-issue of half of the above release. Including 2 cassettes or 2 CDs, the shows featured were The Al Read Show, The Goon Show (The Mysterious Punch Up The Conker), The Clitheroe Kid (Clitheroe and The Hound Dog) and Hancock's Half Hour (A Sunday Afternoon At Home).
Released on cassette in 1999, this release featured four complete episodes previously available as part of the BBC Radio Collection cassette releases. The release includes 4 Christmas episodes as follows: The Christmas Club, Hancock's Happy Christmas, Bill and Father Christmas and The Diary. This cassette was the last to be issued featuring complete radio half hours, as the recent 'Very Best of Episodes' releases are only available on CD. A CD version of this cassette was released in 2001.
Released in 2000, this 4-cassette release featured a further 8 complete radio shows from the 1950s. The release was part of a second series featuring shows from the 50s, 60s, 70s and 80s. Only available on cassette, the shows featured were Take It From Here, Rays A Laugh, Educating Archie, Life With The Lyons, The Al Read Show, The Goon Show, The Clitheroe Kid and Hancock's Half Hour (Hancock in The Police). A boxed set of all of the cassettes from this second series (50's, 60's 70's and 80's) was released under number 05347764-4.
Features Volume 1 of the cassette release of the Best of BBC Comedy of the 50’s through to the 90’s. Only available on cassette, the Hancock’s Half Hour episode is A Sunday Afternoon At Home.
Features Volume 1 of the cassette release of the Best of BBC Comedy of the 50’s through to the 90’s. Only available on Cassette, the Hancock’s Half Hour episode is Hancock In The Police.
This double cassette pack featured the double cassettes Hancock’s Half Hour volumes 1 and 2 which featured the episodes The American’s Hit Town, The Unexploded Bomb, The Poetry Society, Sid’s Mystery Tours, The Scandal Magazine, Last of The McHancock;s,, The Sleepless Night and Fred’s Pie Stall.
This cassette pack featured the 2 double cassette packs Hancock’s Hlaf Hour volumes 3 and 4 which featured the episodes Hancock’s War, The Christmas Club, The Lift, Twelve Angry Men, The Diary, The Old School Reunion, Hancock In The Police and The East Cheam Drama Festival.
This collection featured 3 double cassette albums comprising Hancock’s Half Hour Vol 1, Beyond Our Ken Vol 1 and I’m Sorry I’ll Read That Again Vol 1. The Hancock’s Half Hour episodes were The American’s Hit Town, The Unexploded Bomb, The Poetry Society and Sid’s Mystery Tours.
This cassette / CD was first of a new series of releases, available on both cassette and CD, and the first release to feature the full original Blood Donor / Radio Ham TV transmissions rather than the Pye re-recording. Released in 2003, the release includes The Bedsitter, The Radio Ham, The Bowmans and The Blood Donor plus an interview with Galton & Simpson.
Also known as TV Episodes Volume 2, this release from 2004 includes The Missing Page, The Poison Pen Letters, Lord Byron Lived Here and The Succession - Son & Heir. The only episode from the last BBC TV series not included in this series of releases so far is The Lift, which was previously available on record and cassette but not on CD. The third volume in this series was not released on cassette and so is outside of the scope of this article. It would appear that with the growth of CD and DVD sales, that cassette releases have now been discontinued.