Dick Barton to make audio stage comeback

Tim Bentinck, Noel Johnson and Terry Molloy Noel Johnson (centre) was the original voice of Dick Barton, now revived with the help of Archers cast members Tim Bentinck (l) and Terry Molloy (r)

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Special agent Dick Barton is to return in a live recording that will feature two actors from the BBC radio soap blamed by some for killing him off.

Tim Bentinck and Terry Molloy - who play David Archer and Mike Tucker in The Archers - will star in Dick Barton Special Agent Live, to take place at the Y Theatre in Leicester on 16 June.

The production will be released as a BBC audiobook later this year.

The Archers was blamed for the axing of the Dick Barton serial in 1951.

The rural soap's debut that year on the BBC's Light Programme coincided with the decision to cancel the popular adventure series after five years and more than 700 episodes.

Members of the Dick Barton production team went on to work on The Archers, which eventually took over the serial's regular slot.

As a consequence, the notion that The Archers had in some way caused Barton's departure became ingrained in public consciousness.

The new Dick Barton production will use original radio scripts from 1951 and period equipment in order to present a faithful recreation of a vintage studio recording.

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