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The Beiderbecke Tapes is a two part British television drama serial written by Alan Plater and broadcast in 1987. It is the second serial in The Beiderbecke Trilogy and stars James Bolam and Barbara Flynn as schoolteachers Trevor Chaplin and Jill Swinburne. When a tape recording of a conversation about nuclear waste inadvertently falls into Trevor's hands, Trevor and Jill find themselves being pursued by national security agents.


Trevor Chaplin teaches woodwork and likes to listen to jazz. Jill Swinburne teaches English and wants to help save the planet. They live together and just want a quiet life. Then they meet John the barman who died but is much better now. John gave them a tape, which led to meeting Dave the wimp. They find out about The Peoples Front For The Liberation of West Yorkshire. The man with no name called Mr Peterson came to see them. He was followed by the six men in grey suits. Jill goes to see The Oldest Suffragette In Town. Trevor and Jill go on a trip to Amsterdam with their class from "San Quentin High". Trevor and Jill meet The Honourable Order of Elks who are "looking for a bit of action".

In the same style as the preceding The Beiderbecke Affair, the plot isn't as important as the banter and interplay between the characters. The adventure unfolds to a soundtrack of jazz music in the style of Bix Beiderbecke performed by Frank Ricotti with Kenny Baker as featured cornet soloist.


Filming Locations

  • Jill's House - Norfolk Green, Chapel Allertonmarker, Leedsmarker
  • San Quentin High - Foxwood School, Seacroftmarker, Leeds
  • School staff room & school hall - Moor Grange County Secondary Schoolmarker, Ireland Woodmarker, Leeds
  • The Supermarket - Safeway, Roundhay Road, Oakwoodmarker, Leeds (now Somerfield)
  • The Pub - The Haddon Hall, Burleymarker, Leeds
  • The Post Office - Town Street, Horsforthmarker, Leeds
  • The Registrars Office - Yeadon Town Hall, Yeadonmarker
  • Peterson's office - Tower House, Merrion Street, Leeds
  • Cemetery scenes - Lawnswood Cemetery, Leeds
  • Ferry terminal - Hullmarker
  • Bridge Leidsegracht, Leidse Straat, Amsterdammarker
  • Pronk's hotel - Estherea Hotel, Singel, Amsterdam
  • Oude Schans, Amsterdam
  • Joodenbrees Straat, Amsterdam
  • Amstel, Amsterdam
  • Nieuwe Prinsengracht, Amsterdam
  • Reguliers Grach, Amsterdam
  • Heren Grach, Amsterdam
  • Elks coach - Nassaukade, Amsterdam
  • Elks coach - A9 near Hoofddorpmarker and Badhoeverdorp
  • Elks coach - A4 motorway, Netherlandsmarker
  • Caledonian Hotel, Edinburghmarker
  • Princes Street Gardens, Edinburgh
  • Edinburgh Castle, Edinburgh
  • "A bit of action" - Ladystairs Close, Edinburgh

External links

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