Jack Hargreaves loved a good story, and the story of how the lost episodes of Out of Town came back to light is one that would have fascinated him. The story began on 31st December 1981. The Southern ITV franchise was at an end, and Jack packed up and left Southampton TV Centre for the last time. He had been working there non-stop since 1959, and would not return to the building for a number of years.
For over 20 years Out Of Town was a television programme that provided a window on country life in rural Britain. Hundreds of programmes were broadcast by Southern Television but they were feared lost when the company lost its ITV franchise in 1981. Apart from 28 episodes that were recreated by presenter Jack Hargreaves in 1986, using extracts from films used in the original TV programmes with new footage filmed by Jack, it was presumed that all other examples of the original Out Of Town series had been lost forever.
In 2012, after extensive research by Jack’s stepson Simon Baddeley, Simon Winters, the classic television organisation Kaleidoscope, and Southern Television archive expert David King, 34 complete original episodes of Out Of Town – not seen since their original broadcast in 1980 & 1981 – came to light and are now being made available on DVD by Delta. Over twenty eight hours of Out Of Town are presented on these ten DVDs. Only edited versions of some of the location films that are included have been seen on DVD – featured in the 28 programmes produced in 1986 – but the significant part of them are being presented in their original form for the first time since they were broadcast three decades ago.
The discovery of these programmes ensures that Jack’s legacy on screen is preserved and that the unsentimental charm of Out Of Town will live on for future generations. Each of the DVDs in this collection has a bonus feature which allows the viewer to see the unedited versions of the Out Of Town episodes in their original broadcast format, including the off screen countdown clock with comments from production staff and an occasional remark from Jack Hargreaves.
Featured in The lost Episodes Wooden Box Set:
This Limited edition collectors’ Box set, features 34 unreleased episodes on ten DVD’s in an engraved presentation box with an exclusive booklet. The booklet offers and insight into jacks life and how the lost episodes were discovered including charming photos of Jack whilst filming on location.
This DVD has a bonus feature which allows the viewer to watch the original master tape recordings of Out Of Town – The lost Episodes in full. By selecting the Bonus Feature option you will be able to view the studio clock which counted down to transmission, with some fascinating off screen dialogue between Jack & the production crew, plus the original Southern Television logos and original advertising breaks.
Volume 1 – Coarse Fishing & seven other original films
Coarse Fishing & Yerro’s Operation
It’s the last day of the coarse fishing season and Jack is on a mission to land a big roach. Jack hires a veterinary team to deal with his noisy mule, Yerro. After a tricky operation, expertly carried out by Salisbury vet Mr Burgess, Yerro is back on his feet and Jack is happy with his mule.
A river for all seasons & Bass Fishing
It’s April 19th, when the cuckoo arrives in the south of England and Jack watches as grubs turn into flies. Meanwhile, salmon fisherman Tom Williams lands a beauty. A young starling visits Jack in the middle of the ocean when he goes on a bass fishing trip with the boys from Herne Bay.
Pebbles & Tidal Mill
Jack reflects on the age of a worn pebble rock found at the top of Southampton Water. Jack goes inside Eling Tidal Mill, near Southampton, to see the miller in action and is then back in the studio to put together his grandfather’s 18th century gun.
Chalk Hills & Chalk Springs & Stagecoach
Chalk water provides the perfect environment for one of Jack’s fishing trips. A cowboy comes to the New Forest and teams local pinto horses with an imported western stagecoach.
Volume 2 – Gean Tree Furniture & seven other original films
Gean Tree Furniture & Southern Television Sea Angling Championships
Jack takes his cameras to study crab apple, blackthorn, wayfarer, sycamore and gean (black cherry), trees. Actor Michael Hordern joins Jack on a trip to Islay, in Scotland, for the final of the Southern Television Sea Angling Championships.
Garden Competition & Dry fly fishing
Garden competition: Jack is on the road to view the entrants in a garden competition. Jack discusses animal husbandry before presenting a film on dry fly fishing on chalk and limestone rivers.
Model Making & Teaching Fly Fishing Techniques
Jack takes a look at a collection of model horse-drawn vehicles. Jack makes a comparison between the techniques involved in fly fishing and golf.
The Theft Of The Countryside & Fell Ponies
Jack reflects on changes in the countryside and walks the path of an old sheep track. Jack heads north to take a close look at fell ponies.
Volume 3 – Heavy Horses & six other original films
Heavy Horses & Fly Fishing In June
Jack is in Burton Bradstock, West Dorset, to see the mane of a heavy horse dressed. Jack is out, at the beginning of June, to see the mayfly rising.
Gypsy Caravans & Fishing for Pollock
The work of a showman parnter is explored as Jack visits the off-season home of a winter circus. Jack is with the anglers of Poole when they bring back 60 pollock from a fishing trip.
21st Anniversary Programme
Jack reflects on the longevity of the series. He enjoys film clips of skate fishing with The “Ton Up” Club and watches steam traction engines, hunting with spaniels, and more.
Sheep Farming & Bite Indicators
Jack joins a mobile sheep dipping and shearing unit as they carry out their expert work. Jack takes his cameras to the River Stour to fish using some ingenious bite indicators.
Volume 4 – Into The Past at Appleby Fair & seven other original films
Into The Past at Appleby Fair & Private Rivers
Jack arrives at the Appleby Old Time Show, in Cumbria, on a gig drawn by dales cross ponies, then enjoys demonstrations of some old country crafts. A Dorset country boy – rocker Greg Lake - fishes with Jack in a chalk stream in summer.
Fishing for barbel & Ferrets
After looking at some wooden fish sculptors, Jack goes barbel fishing with the Ringwood Anglers’ Club on the Lower Hampshire Avon. Jack visits a colony of ferrets in a ferret court before taking them on a rabbiting expedition.
Pigeon decoy & Fishing with a dog knobbler
Jack is given a demonstration of an ingenius device, invented by Tommy Grace, to be used in pigeon shooting. Jack explores the history of artificial minnows and the contemporary minnow flies.
Freeze Branding & Perch Fishing
Jack takes a look at how frozen carbon dioxide gas (dry ice) was introduced to brand horses. Jack is at Dave Swallow’s side as he enjoys a perch fishing session.
Volume 5 – Pony Riding & eight other original films
Pony Riding & Next Generation & Wild and Cottage Gardens & Sheep Fair & Barbel
Junior performance ponies of the New Forest take part in a competition, and sons of sheikhs in the Persian Gulf take a riding lesson to continue the Arab tradition of horsemanship. A clockmaker and a lacemaker demonstrate their skills and Jack fishes near a wreck in Poole Harbour for conger, ling and pollock. Jacks visits wild and cottage gardens. The ballroom of a Bournemouth hotel hosts a chicken show before Jack moves on to the Great Wilton sheep fair. For only the second time in 21 years the Out Of Town cameras capture a barbel being caught.
Pannage & Dry Fly Fishing on the River Test
Jack is in the woodland to watch pigs lead their natural lives at pannage time. The chalk water of the River Test is the scene for Jack’s dry fly fishing trip.
Wheels & Grayling Fishing
Jack visits a village wheelwright to collect his restored Hampshire strawberry wagon. The River Kennet is the location for this film which examines the grayling, a relative of the trout.
Volume 6 – Sheep Dogs & five other original films
Sheep Dogs & Guns
Jack heads to Tregaron, in Wales, on a bitterly cold day to visit a sheep dog sale. Eastleigh is Jack’s destination in this programme where he meets Dai Brooks, an expert on guns from the American West.
Multiplier Reel Casting & Hounds
Jack discusses the mechanics of a multiplier reel before Les Baldry and his friends practice their casting techniques in the unlikely setting of a school playing field. Jack visits Podimore in Somerset to see why bassett hounds have been successfully used as hunting dogs for generations.
Corn Threshing & Eden Vale
The Out Of Town cameras are at a farm in Hampshire where the local young farmers’ club members demonstrate generations-old methods of corn threshing. Local knowledge is the key to success when a trout fisherman wades into action In the waters of the Eden Vale.
Volume 7 – Blackmore Vale & five other original films
Blackmore Vale & Breeding Lurchers
Jack is in the valley of the River Stour, below Blackmore Vale, made famous by Thomas Hardy. Former trials racing motorcyclist, Ginger French, shows the collection of lurchers he’s bred.
Annual Agricultural Show & Pheasant Shooting
Horse-drawn trade carts are the centre of attraction at this agricultural show. Octagenarian Percy Stanbury watches a pheasant shoot on the edge of Salisbury Plain.
Old Railway Line & Cloudburst At The Agricultural Show
Jack explores the path of a long, disused railway track that has turned into a new habitat for wild plants. The Out Of Town cameras visit the New Forest Show, and even a cloudburst cannot spoil the fun.
Volume 8 – Pigeons & six other original films
Pigeons & Fishing For Next To Nothing
Jack is in an open field of barley stubble to control the wood pigeon population. Jack uses tackle, that cost him next to nothing, when he fishes at the height of summer.
Fishing For Minnows & Kingfishers & Corn Flail
David Boag searches for minnows in the Dorset Stour to feed rescued baby kingfishers. David watches kingfishers in their natural habitat. Corn flail: Jack Bird threshes corn with a flail.
Summer Fishing & Village Fair
Jack takes advantage of a warm summer’s day to enjoy fishing in a river, reflecting the seasonal conditions. £20 is at stake for the winner of the “Guess the weight of the Steer” competition at Jack’s local village fair.
Volume 9 – Fish Hooks & five other original films
Fish Hooks & Gardening – Earthworm Farm
The factory of A.E. Partridge and Sons, of Redditch, is featured in this film about fish hooks. Gardening – earthworm farm: Jack enjoys a rich harvest from the vegetables and plants in his garden and then demonstrates how to make an earthworm farm.
Southern Fishing Competition In Ireland & Rabbit Catching
The Out Of Town cameras are in Cobh, in Ireland, for the final of the Southern Television Sea Angling Competition. Jack goes rabbit hunting with a specially bred eight-month old warren dog.
Observing The Country & Working Dog Show
Jack is in a prime position to watch deer and other wildlife. Working dog show: Terriers and lurchers are the centre of attraction at a show for working dogs.
Volume 10 – Saving The Countryside & five other original films
Saving The Countryside & Going to Market
Jack re- visits a river, on the chalk massif of the Dorset downs, where he once fished for trout. It’s Wednesday and Jack visits Ringwood market in Hampshire, where livestock and produce are in abundance.
Sheep Farming & Centenarian Angler
It is the beginning of October and time for the rams to go with the ewes. The Out Of Town cameras are at the “marriage ceremony” with the Hampshire Down rams, of the Shapwick flock and the Critchell ewes. George Dunton celebrates his 100th birthday with a trip to the River Frome in Somerset where he achieves a dream.
Parsonage Down & First English Culture
Jack is on Salisbury Plain to see the work of local farmers & shepherds. Jack signs off in this final programme as he explores Druid country, where the iron age met the stone age.