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“Gamekeeper is a 1980 British drama film directed by Ken Loach. It is based on a novel of the same name by Barry Hines."


Another Google comes up with: “Loach began the 1980s with two films scripted by Barry Hines, The Gamekeeper (1980), made for ATV and Looks and Smiles (1981), made for Central TV (and limited cinema release). Tony Garnett (his long time producer) had left (temporarily) for America, and Loach admits to finding things difficult at this time, struggling to raise money for films and failing to adapt to the political changes that were taking place as Britain swung to the Right.”


My documentary department at ATV was in the right place at the right time for Ken Loach when Tony Garnett was in America because, seizing my chance I was given a 'thumbs up' to commission ‘proper’ dramas, which would be broadcast in a peak time drama slot on ITV provided they 'felt' like a documentary. 


Not so satisfactorily Ken persuaded Channel 4 to commission a four part documentary series on the unions via ‘my’ Channel 4 Offers department at Central Television. These ended up, in press-speak, to be the only documentaries (that I was involved in) that were ‘banned’, apart from “Hooded Men’ (see earlier story.)


In fact neither Ken's nor my programmes were 'banned' they were simply 'withdrawn'. I am delighted to say this was not the 'norm' and was never, to my knowledge, done for financial gain as is amply illustrated by Death of A Princess, which like Gamekeeper was broadcast in 1980.


The attached press clipping ‘A Brace Of Loach’ gives a flavor of the times.  






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