Last updated : 15th November 2015

Episode 'Stopover'
Story Synopsis An old collegue offers Cowley the name of a highly-placed double agent in exchange for protection. WriterJohn Goldsmith
Guest Stars James Laurenson, Michel Gothard DirectorWilliam Brayne
Production Order
& Filming Dates
Block 3, Episode 1
23rd April to 4th May 1979Main shoot.
21st May 1979Pick-up shots at Malenski's house and, in an additional scene, Cowley explains to the lads why he was suspicious of Meredith's offer.
7th June 1979Addtional scene: The lads discuss the Meredith mystery in the pub.
(See Sidenotes below.)
Original UK Transmission Season 3, Episode 3
10th November 1979
Dave's Comment

Fast-paced, brutal, action-packed... and endlessly thrilling! "I hate flashy drivers!" Many of the action and chase scenes are superbly choreographed.

The plot is complex and if you have to watch it a couple of times to understand what's going on, I don't blame you! However, unlike the later 'Runner', this one does make sense! The whole episode ultimately revolves around the huge twist at the end... and Cowley happily keeps his men - and us! - in the dark all the way through.

A question: when the lads hear Cowley being shot, they race up to the airfield but stop to open the barrier - why didn't they simply drive straight through it??!!! Actually it looks as though it was a metal one (thanks to Diane Lilley).

The action scenes here are terrific - some great camera-work and direction.

Cowley acts like a real swine during the interrogation of Malenski - you can almost feel sorry for the incarcerated Pole. Good little performance by Morgan Shepherd there.

For the first time in the series, I think, Cowley begins to doubt the competence of his own team: "You were my best men." / "There's no answer to that!".

Loved seeing the Granada being put through its paces at the end!

Sharon's Comment

This is a great action episode. Lots of excellent shooting and driving stuff. The driving stunts are particularly good. The plot is terrific.

Cowley is at his best - ferocious, snappish, self-sufficient and secretive, not even fully trusting his two best agents. Note that toward the end Bodie whines a bit about this only to be told (rather viciously) that he can't act.

The little bit with the drunk serves no plot purpose but is great fun.

Both Lads look very good. Bodie seems to have gained some weight and doesn't move quite as quickly, but the extra bulk looks fine and makes him even more impressive when he "looms". At the finale when he sneaks up on the bad guys, he is particulary deadly-looking even with the gum chewing. <g>

The reuse of several houses is bothersome but understandable.

The pub scene that was likely used as a filler is one of my favorites. Cute banter and teasing, but nice character development as well. A worried, pensive Doyle, drinking in a pub with a relatively carefree and happy Bodie while gnawing on a problem, is a beautiful sight to behold. <g>

A fine episode with some particularly good aspects. High praise to the stunt folk!


Malenski, held for interrogation: "I will tell you nothing!"

Cowley: "I haven't asked you anything yet, laddie!"

Malenski: "If I help you, Kodai will have my family eliminated."

Cowley: "If you help me, the only elimination will be that of Kodai himself."

Malenski: "It's not a risk I choose to take, Mr Cowley."

Cowley: "In that case I have no choice, either. I will have your family in Poland incriminated as Western agents."

Malenski: "No-one will believe that!"

Cowley: "My people will ensure that the evidence against them will be incontrovertable."

Malenski: "You bastard!! You're just like Kodai. You use people - innocent people, old people, anybody - to get what you want!"

Cowley: "I do try to get what I want. But I'm not like Kodai: I look after the people I use."

Doyle, rehearsing: "The good news is that my colleague here obeyed orders and didn't shoot Kodai..."

Cowley, entering unannounced: "... And the bad news is that he got away... again! And you're my best men... you were my best men!"

Doyle: "There's no answer to that!"

Doyle: "Go on, get us a Scotch. Your reward will be in Heaven, my son!"

Bodie, eyeing up the barmaid: "I'd rather have it down here, thanks!"

Cowley: "I want security sewn up so tight, a gnat can't get in."

Bodie: "Knee-deep in dead insects already, sir!"

Cowley: "Under no circumstances whatsoever is a shot to be fired until further orders. Anybody who disobeys will spend the rest of his life watching Russian trawlers off the Outer Hebrides!"

Doyle: "Nice to feel wanted!"

Bodie: "I'm quite looking forward to seeing Kodai again."

Doyle: "Oh, yeah - can't wait!"

Bodie: "Oh he's not such a bad sort. A bit careless with firearms, I'll concede but..."

Doyle: "Yeah and he loves animals and children, I know!"


The amusing pub scene that Sharon mentions was never in John Goldsmith's original script but had to be added and filmed much later (by another writer - probably either Brian Clemens or Script Editor Gerry O'Hara) when the production team realised the episode only ran to 46 minutes!

In the episode's script, Cowley was suppposed to drive the Granada in the finale. In an interview Gordon Jackson gave when the series finished in 1981, he claimed to have been a terrified passenger during chase scenes - perhaps he wasn't confident enough to do the driving either!

Deja Vu

James Laurenson (Meredith) has had a busy film and TV career as a character actor with appearances in British classics such as Women in Love and Elizabeth R. American TV-movie producer Bobby Roth cast him as a lead in three of his productions, Heartbreakers (1984 - not the recent movie of the same name!), Rainbow Drive and The Walraff Affair (aka The Man Inside) . He also starred in the Edward Woodward Cold War thriller Codename: Kyril. More recently he's been a semi-regular in the popular period action drama Sharpe and played a police commander in the brilliant one-off docu-drama This is Personal: The Hunt for the Yorkshire Ripper. But my favourite appearance for him has to be the crazy 1980 horror film The Monster Club!

Michael Gothard (Kodai) will be familiar to James Bond fans for he played one of the villains in For Your Eyes Only. Earlier highlights included the unforgettable Vincent Price horror flick Scream and Scream Again and the hugely controversial Ken Russell film The Devils. He also starred alongside Lewis Collins in Jack the Ripper. According to the IMDB he tragically committed suicide in 1993.

Morris Perry (Radouk) will be remembered by Sweeney fans as Commander Maynon in many early episodes of that series. He was also a lead character in Terry Nation's mid-70s classic apocalypse drama Survivors.

Technical Notes For current TV transmissions and older VHS/DVD releases, the picture quality on this episode benefits from virtually no dirt or damage. However the dialogue track is rather muted in comparison to the Music & Effects track. However this is not a problem for Network's BluRay and (future) DVD releases.
British agent Colin Meredith has somehow escaped captivity in Cambodia and managed to reach England. Landing at King George V and Victoria Docks, he demands to be taken into protective custody by Cowley.
Meanwhile the CI5 chief is attending the funeral of an old Intelligence Services colleague. The production unit took a rare trip back to its old ground for the scene: St Mary's in Harefield.
After a shoot-out at the docks with enemy agent Kodai, Meredith is taken to a CI5 safe-house. This was The Spinney, 28 Totteridge Common, Totteridge Lane, Totteridge (and had previously been used for 'Man Without a Past'). But it has since been demolished and replaced, along with many of the other houses on that road for some reason. (Subsidence, perhaps?)
Meredith informs Cowley that another enemy agent, Radouk, wishes to defect and is able to offer the identity of a double agent, codenamed 'Iron Sphinx', who has infiltrated the British Security Services. Meredith offers to act as "liaison" between Radouk and Cowley. Radouk is camped out at 141 Friern Barnet Lane, Whetstone.
Kodai has disappeared but Bodie recognised minor agent Jan Malenski from the docks incident. He lives at 12 Sherwood Street, off Friern Barnet Lane, Whetstone.
Malenski's interrogation was apparently filmed at Cadby Hall, Hammersmith (demolished in 1983).
Cowley dispatches the lads to get Kodai. They drive down Friern Barnet Lane, Whetstone.
Kodai somehow manages to get the telephone number of the safehouse. Transporting Meredith to a second safehouse, the lads check for tails on Rofant Road, Northwood. I've nudged the Google Street View camera up the street a way to highlight the oddly-shaped house seen in the background of the ep screenshot.
There is now a location "cheat". As Doyle gets back in the car, they are suddenly in Brook Green, Hammersmith! (The scene had required a reshoot at a later date for undisclosed reasons - possibly there had been a camera or film stock fault when it was originally shot.)
The second safe house is 7 Frithwood Avenue, Northwood. Unfortunately greenery completely obscures it on Google Street View! Sharp-eyed fans will note that this house was previously used in 'Not a Very Civil Civil Servant'!
The lads stop off for a drink at Great Northern Railway Tavern, 67 High Street, Hornsey. Although we only see the interior, it does seem to bear some similarities with what we can see on Google Street View.
Still having doubts about the deal with Radouk, Cowley nevertheless drives to the airfield as agreed. It is documented as White Waltham.
Pursuing the helicopter, the lads screech past another church which, by sheer coincidence, is also called St Mary's, though this one is in White Waltham. (Annoyingly it's now greatly obscured by a tree!) The subsequent shot of the Granada driving over the motorway bridge was shot a little further south on the same road.
Radouk's country pile is Warfield Hall, Warfield.
In pursuit, Doyle skids the Granada around a couple of tight junctions. Actually they were both the same one!: Broadmoor Road and Smewins Road, White Waltham.
Our heroes arrive at Radouk's manor via its eastern entrance on Forest Road, Warfield.
The final shoot-out was filmed in the grounds of the aforementioned Warfield Hall.

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