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Filmed along the West Somerset Railway in Minehead, the British children's series The Flockton Flyer concerned a family of railroaders who were determined to keep an old-fashioned train service alive despite the opposition of local businessmen and other such antagonists. Although the family had little money and even less resources, they managed to persevere, but not without the assistance of a group of feisty youngsters. A vintage steam engine from the Great Western line was "starred" in The Flockton Flyer, which debuted over Britain's Southern Television service in 1976

1 Season, 6 Episodes
April 18, 1977
Classic
7.9/10
Cast: Patrick Mower, Gerald Harper, Harry Fowler, Sheila Fern, Gwyneth Strong
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The Flockton Flyer Full Episode Guide

  • Ghosts appear to be haunting both Flockton station and Jelly's hut. At Flockton the 'ghosts' turn out to be tearaway teenage vandal Don Davis. Having been caught, he is befriended, and becomes a volunteer on the railway. The ghosts at Jelly's hut appear real, however, and a local vicar is called upon to perform an exorcism (the camera remains outside the hut during the 15-minute ceremony due to 1970's ITV regulations on children's programming). This clergyman also runs a hostel for homeless boys, a hostel of which Don Davis is a resident; this leads the Carters to put him up for a few days in their home as they befriend him.

  • Disaster is narrowly averted when the Flockton Flyer steams towards a tree deliberately felled across the line. In attempting to move it, Bob Carter is injured. A nearby farmer rescues him, but also proves to be the culprit, fearing that a restored train service will threaten his cattle, wandering in search of water during the drought. The railway's 4-wheeled water tank truck is used to bring gallons of water to the thirsty cattle, and relations are restored.

  • The Carter family are introduced. They are evicted from their home and work (running a petrol station, as tenants). Bob Carter (the father) is a volunteer in the local railway preservation society and agrees that he and his family will undertake the running of the restored line, in return for taking up residence in Flockton station. Bill Jelly is introduced as a local tramp, living in a nearby platelayers' line side hut. The railway's 4-wheeled open freight truck is used to transport the Carter family's possessions to Flockton.

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