Another Official Site of
The Talke Pits Development Company
Another Official Site of
The Talke Pits Development Company
The web site of the witty, urbane and handsome Ken Phillips

My Journal

Guest Book

Guest Map

My original query

1) In common with many other web sites, the BBC makes it very difficult to find an email address to which to send a question, complaint or message of any sort. While understanding the reasons for this, it would be much more helpful to display a message saying that you do not have the resources for answering the myriad queries that would result from such information being easily available. I have spent five minutes trying to find some means of finding a method of contacting you, other than letter or telephone. Please bear in mind that replying to an email only incurs a  labour cost, there is no cost for telephone or postage.  
2) The question I was trying to ask was about the availability of outstanding BBC dramas on DVD format. In particular, I would like to acquire "Barchester Chronicles" (with Pleasance, Hawthorne and Rickman), and the 1978 series "Law and
Order". I do not believe either of these is available. Are there reasons why potentially high revenue earners such as these are not made available? Are there any plans for either of these series to be published on DVD?  

The Reply

Dear Ken,

Thank you for your enquiry.

Unfortunately 'Barchester Chronicles and Law and Order' is not currently available on DVD through BBC Shop and we are unaware of any plans to release this title in the near future.

BBC Shop is committed to giving customers access to the complete range of product published by BBC Worldwide and in order to view the complete range please go to

BBC Shop is not responsible for any decisions regarding commissioning of new formats. Any queries relating to the above should be directed to:
              Commissioning Editor
              BBC Worldwide
              80 Wood Lane
              London W12 OTT

Why not sign up to receive the BBC Shop email bulletin and you'll receive exciting offers and promotions as well as the latest new releases. Please go to

Kind regards,

Madeline Smith
Customer Services
BBC Shop - all your BBC favourites under one roof

The Response

Dear Madeline,

Had you bothered to read my email, you would have deduced that I was not enquiring about a DVD combining the two titles I mentioned, but the possibility of obtaining them separately. However, I must confess that I am excited by the possibilities that your reply opens up.

Please let me know when and if the following compo-vids become available:

“Pride and Prejudice and the Sweeney” – It is a truth universally acknowledged that we’re the Sweeney, son, and we haven’t had any dinner.

“War and Peace and Last of the Summer Wine”. Napoleon attempts to invade Russia on 2 bicycles and a motorised wheel-barrow.

“Jane Eyre and Casualty” – ‘Reader, I sliced his arm off with a bread knife’.

“Hamlet and University Challenge” – ‘Come on, I must have an answer’.

“BBC Shop on line and House of Cards” – ‘Confused? You may say that, Maddy, I couldn’t possibly comment.’

Love and peace


Additional suggestions by Ange, siren and prospective school governor

"Anna Karenina and  My Family". All happy families are the same, but those featuring a mid-life crisis dentist as a father are particularly hackneyed.
"A Tale of Two Cities and Crackerjack". It was the best of times, it was Friday, it was five to five.

"Catch 22 and anything starring Dale Winton". He's back. It's the same one!

"Julius Caesar and Ground Force". Friends, Romans, Countrymen, lend me your shears.

"Great Expectations and Bill Oddie's How to Watch Wildlife". Which I mean to say, Pip old chap, what larks.
My email correspondence with BBC On-Line