The Vital Spark. Image shows from L to R: Para Handy (Roddy McMillan), Dan McPhail (John Grieve), Dougie (Walter Carr), Sunny Jim (Alex McAvoy). Copyright: BBC.

The Vital Spark

BBC One sitcom about Scottish sailors. 21 episodes (pilot + 3 series), 1965 - 1974. Stars Roddy McMillan, John Grieve, Walter Carr and Alex McAvoy.

The Vital Spark. Image shows from L to R: Para Handy (Roddy McMillan), Dan McPhail (John Grieve), Dougie (Walter Carr), Sunny Jim (Alex McAvoy). Copyright: BBC.

The Vital Spark

Captain Para Handy steers his famous puffer, the Vital Spark, up and down the Clyde, together with his motley crew

Genre
Sitcom
Broadcast
1965 - 1974
Channel
BBC One
Episodes
21   (1 pilot + 3 series)
Starring
Roddy McMillan, John Grieve, Walter Carr and Alex McAvoy
Writer
Bill Craig
Producer
Pharic Maclaren

More adventures with the Scottish sailors. The crew of the Vital Spark have to deal not only with the regular hardships of their life but also with a decade unsympathetic to their existence.

Production Details

Part of

Comedy Playhouse

Production company
Also known as
  • Para Handy

Broadcast details

First broadcast
Thursday 12th August 1965 on BBC One at 8:50pm
Last new broadcast
Thursday 24th October 1974 on BBC Two at 9pm
Last repeat
Monday 14th December 2015 at 10:00pm on BBC2 Scot

Website links