Dateline Diamonds
'The hottest rocks in Britain are being smuggled by the hottest rockers in Britain'

Ray Reynolds of Woodford Green struck real treasure in an antique shop, where he found both an original film poster and promotional stills that would have been produced for display in cinema foyers. Few people would have appreciated the value of his find!

Sadly, the photos include no shots taken aboard the Galaxy and none featuring Kenny Everett.

We thank Ray very much for sharing his find and his friend Tony Spalding, who kindly scanned them for us.

Ray is pictured left, outside the Electric Palace in Harwich, with his original poster.

(Photo of Ray, copyright Mary Payne and Radio London Ltd. Foyer stills, courtesy of Ray Reynolds. Sorry – we couldn't resist adding our own captions!)
The Chantelles – this shot supposedly depicts them performing 'aboard the Galaxy'

(Just out of shot, the Big L credibility meter has smoke coming out of it...)

Maj. Fairclough (William Lucas) cracks both the safe and the World Record for the longest ever safe-breaking film sequence.

Was it really worth the effort? Trevor Bailey points out:

"Watching DD on DVD, something struck me as rather odd. Why would anyone smuggle stolen cut diamonds out of the UK to Amsterdam, a city which to my certain knowledge is awash with rough diamonds? I'd be the first to admit that my knowledge of the machinations of international diamond smuggling is somewhat limited but I'm fairly sure that the usual way of going about things is rough diamonds from Amsterdam to the UK, rather than cut diamonds the other way around.

I'm not suggesting that you or Chris are any more familiar with diamond smuggling than I am but is it possible that I'm missing something?"

The same thing had struck me when I was compiling the feature about the film. Chris and I agree with Trevor, it does all seem a bit 'coals to Newcastle'!
Try to control yourself, sir. TW never signs autographs till he's 'ad 'is Camp
Everyone tries to muscle-in on the photo with the 'Minuscule Mooshes', as Kenny always called them
Patsy Rowlands, as Mrs Edgcumbe, the intellectually-challenged bus conductress who recalls seeing a 'military man' .
"Will you get off that Hot Housewives line and concentrate on finding this safe-cracking Upper Class Twit of the Year!"
Inspector Cloussau is put on the case and discovers no diamonds, but spends days searching the Galaxy for 'berms' and 'murnkees'.
"You're nicked, Benson! Nobody pays that sort of dosh for a bootleg reel-to-reel of 'Knees'!"

On Sunday, April 3rd, 1966, Dateline Diamonds went on general cinema release, supporting main feature, Doctor in Clover.

The film is available on a Renown Pictures DVD, with a sleeve quote taken from this Radio London feature by Mary Payne. The quote is in fact the only place that mention is made of Radio London and its ship. Rather strange, considering that the station was pivotal to what we shall laughingly refer to as the film's plot! The synopsis merely refers to 'an offshore pirate radio station' and the blurb centres around the Small Faces, who really don't appear very much. There is also a track listing of the music performed, which did not appear on the packaging of the earlier release of the film. It would appear that this also came courtesy of our Radio London feature. See sleeve enlargement here.

(Click on the photo to buy the DVD.)

Dateline Diamonds is included in an 8-film collection called 50's And 60's Films With A Beat. Other titles are Be My Guest, Live it Up, Every Day's a Holiday, The Primitives, The Golden Disc, Band of Thieves and Tell me Another.

For full cast list, song titles and location shots, go back to Part One of the Radio London Dateline Diamonds supplement.
Ben Toney's recollections of making the film (with more photos) are here.


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