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Francis Durbridge


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Francis Henry Durbridge (25 November 1912 - 11 April 1998) was an English playwright and author born in Hull.

Educated at Bradford Grammar School in Yorkshire, he was encouraged to write by his English teacher, and continued to do so whilst studying English at Birmingham University. After graduating in 1933, he worked for a short time as a stockbroker’s clerk, before selling a radio play to the BBC at the age of 21.

In 1938, he created the character Paul Temple, a crime novelist and detective. With Steve Trent, a Fleet Street journalist and later his wife, Temple solved numerous crimes in the glamorous world of the leisured middle-classes, first on radio and, from 1969 until 1971, in a 64-part big-budget television series.

Durbridge went on to forge a successful career as a writer for the stage, with seven plays, the last of which, Sweet Revenge, was written in 1991.

He married Norah Lawley, with whom he had two sons, in 1940. He died at his home in Barnes, London in 1998.

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  • jefferyn

    the paul temple detective fiction is great. used to hear the reruns on public radio in the late 80's and early 90's. similar to Dashiell Hammett's series "the thin man", and also made in the same era 30's to the 50's. i didn't realized that the bbc has been remaking them in the last decade. the remakes are excellent and reproduce the 30's and 40's sound environments very well. interesting that most of the streams listed here are german, since the plays are british... although probably not intentional, some are fairly campy with the origins of the old "hollywood" style accents... someone is always drinking martini's... car's are exploding, kaboom!! so glad i've been finding a lot more of the lately... the hours of sanding and painting my place each weekend fly by when i have these playing...

    2 Sep 2013 Reply

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