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The Scales of Justice

The Scales of Justice was a series of thirteen British cinema featurettes produced between 1962 and 1967 for Anglo-Amalgamated at Merton Park Studios in London. The first nine episodes were made in black and white, the last four in colour. The final episode, Payment in Kind, was Merton Park's last production.

The Scales of Justice
Series titles with an part image of the Old Bailey statue
Presented byEdgar Lustgarten
Composer(s)Johnny Douglas
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original language(s)English
No. of episodes13
Producer(s)Jack Greenwood
Running time30 Minutes
Production company(s)Merton Park Studios
Picture format35 mm film 4:3
Original release1962 –

They were based on actual criminal cases and each film was introduced by crime writer Edgar Lustgarten. The series derives its title from the symbolic scales held by the statue of Justice, which is situated above the dome of London's Central Criminal Court, The Old Bailey. In the opening narration she is described as having ' her right hand, the Sword of Retribution, and in her left – The Scales of Justice'

The end version of the theme music for the series (by Johnny Douglas) was performed by The Tornados. It was re-recorded and released as the 'B' side of their single "The Ice Cream Man".

The series became even more widely known in the UK when it was broadcast as a TV series in various ITV regions during the 1970s and since. In July 2017 the series commenced on the free-to-air television channel Talking Pictures TV.

In October 2012 Network DVD released the complete series as a two-disc DVD set.

Episode guideEdit

Title Date Cast Director Format Story
1. "The Guilty Party" 1962 Zena Marshall, Anthony Jacobs, Derek Francis, Jack Gwillim, Wensley Pithey, Kenneth Thornett Lionel Harris B&W Edward Sinclair and his wife Thelma live surrounded by wealth and luxury. But Sinclair is weighed down heavily by debts.
2. "A Woman's Privilege" 1962 Bernard Archard, Ann Lynn, Patrick Wymark, Ernest Clark, Noel Hood, Pamela Greer, Gerald Cross Anthony Bushell B&W On a cruise to cheer herself up after a broken romance, Shirley Fawsett meets Joe Ashton. The result is a court case where he sues her for breach of promise.
3. "Moment of Decision" 1962 Ray Barrett, Pat Healy, Marjie Lawrence, Lisa Madron, Mike Sarne, Michael Aspel, Norman Claridge John Knight B&W A nursemaid loses the baby in her charge.
4. "Position of Trust" 1963 Derrick Sherwin, Imogen Hassall, Edward Atienza, Peter Barkworth, Geoffrey Chater, Cyril Luckham, Robert Lankesheer Lionel Harris B&W The extrovert son of a powerful industrialist meets a pretty French girl called Yvonne at a Bohemian night spot, becoming infatuated, gradually growing their relationship resulting in an illicit weekend away from his fiancée. The weekend begins promisingly but after their first night together a man barges into their Brighton hotel bedroom, claiming to be a private detective acting for Yvonne's husband.
5. "The Undesirable Neighbour" 1963 Vanda Godsell, Bridget Armstrong, Anthony Newlands, Ronald Hatton, Garfield Morgan, Dorinda Stevens Gordon Hales B&W When a young married couple move into a new home the wife is popular with the local men and starts the gossips buzzing.
6. "The Invisible Asset" 1963 Kenneth J. Warren, Ronald Leigh-Hunt, Annette Carell, Gabriella Licudi, Stanley Morgan, Kenneth Benda, Peter Bathurst, Philip Latham Norman Harrison B&W In a city restaurant the owner blackmails his most influential customers by using a hidden microphone on a special table.
7. "Personal and Confidential" 1965 Robert Cartland, Harry Littlewood, Howard Lang, Geoffrey Toone, Jeffrey Segal, Windsor Davies, Patrick Carter, Don McKillop Geoffrey Nethercott B&W Found in the briefcase of the man in Room 755, who fell, or was pushed, from a seventh storey window is a red file, marked "Top Secret".
8. "The Hidden Face" 1965 Christine Finn, Richard Butler, Alex Macintosh, Robert James, Gretchen Franklin, Vernon Dobtcheff, Peter Stephens, David Garth Patrick Dromgoole B&W Jane Penshurst writes a book attacking MP Milsom. When Milsom shoots himself, his son, William, seeks revenge.
9. "The Material Witness" 1965 Noel Travarthen, Reginald Marsh, Sally Nesbitt, Harry Locke, Hector Ross, John Horsley, Steve Peters Geoffrey Nethercott B&W A young man is the personal assistant to a company executive who has little time for him.
10. "Company of Fools" 1966 Barrie Ingham, Jacqueline Jones, Maurice Kaufmann, Garfield Morgan Peter Duffell Colour Five strangers from varied walks of life come together to investigate the life of a man who has caused them all serious financial losses and to exact their own private revenge.
11. "The Haunted Man" 1966 Keith Barron, James Ellis, Alexandra Bastedo, Isobel Black, Tenniel Evans, Dallas Cavell Stanley Willis Colour Actor Bill Kenton, injured trying to prevent a raid on a shop, returns to his career, to find that he cannot remember his lines. Forced to leave the theatre, he becomes a man obsessed with finding the thieves.
12. "Infamous Conduct" 1966 Dermot Walsh, Bridget Armstrong, Ewen Solon, Richard Warner, Terry Wale Richard Martin Colour Struck off the medical register, surgeon, Anthony Searle meets Dixon, a bank robber on the run and Dixon wants a "face job".
13. "Payment in Kind" 1967 Justine Lord, Maxine Audley, Brian Haines, Derrick Sherwin, Gwen Cherrell, Henry McGee, Peter Bathurst Peter Duffell Colour The dedicated wife of a struggling businessman falls behind on the hire purchase payments and the debt collector suggests "payment in kind".

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