The Rock

The Guv’nor writes…



Some years ago when I was heavily evolved in television I wrote a TV series set on the Rock of Gibraltar. It was called The Rock and featured two policemen from the UK: an ex-Chief Constable, who worked strictly by the book; and a younger undercover policeman who broke all the rules. They didn’t get on, but eventually their different techniques made a strong arm of the law.


It was a good idea that attracted the attention of two very powerful and extraordinary men. Gerard Glaister, the biggest producer of TV series for the BBC, and Sir Joshua Hassan the First Minister of Gibraltar.


Gerry was a legend in TV, Sir Joshua had an international reputation as a brilliant man, and I got on well with both of them.


The group that owned the big hotels, the ferry to Tangiers, where they had interests, and Gib Air were talking about supporting the series.


Gerry and I went to Tangiers as their guests – useful for our project, as some episodes would feature Tangiers. Their agent looked after us and we looked up an old friend of mine who had one of the most beautiful Villas in Tangiers, it was truly stunning. We had lunch served by four Berber servants in wonderful blue costumes. My contact knew a lot of people in the royal family and government who would be very useful for our project.


In contrast I’d been out one night with the CID in Gib. I met the families who run “another side” of Gibraltar.


I first saw Gib ten years earlier. We arrived after dark, it was all lit up. The heat hit me. On the runway two army officers in their khakis were talking to two bobbies. It all looked so English. We stayed the night at The Rock Hotel, next day the ferry to Spain and a taxi to Marbella. In those days Marbella was elegant and full of interesting people.


The series was beginning to shape up.


Then it happened.


I was summoned to King Charles Street, the Foreign Office with all its magnificence, its Darbour Court and its ushers…



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