Night of the Wolf (1976)

A Horror Legend of Man and Beast by Victor Pemberton

It came at me from nowhere… eyes glarin’ out of the dark like emeralds. Teeth like rocks, tarnished with the blood of human flesh. And hair streamin’ out of its neck and hands and feet… This isn’t one of God’s creatures, sir. It is the work of the devil himself.

Time: March 1883.

Place: Cambridge and the Fen Country.

This 90-minute gothic horror play was originally commissioned as a starring vehicle for James Stewart, but ended up starring Vincent Price and his third wife Coral Browne, who recorded the play in early July 1975 following closing of their stage production of the French bedroom farce, Ardele, which played in Oxford, Brighton and London in June.

Price plays a respected Pennsylvanian judge, Mathew Deacon, who crosses the Atlantic and heads to Cambridge to find why his son, Robert, went missing and is presumed dead.

Learning from Robert’s friend, Griffin, that the university student was passionately in love with a mysterious red-haired beauty called Dorothy Northcott, Mathew heads to Northcott Manor deep in the marshlands of the Fens, for some answers. But in the darkness, Mathew encounters what could only be described as a werewolf… Could Robert have fallen victim to this supernatural creature? And what dark secrets are the family hiding?


Directed by John Tydeman, featuring special effects by the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, Night of the Wolf was originally broadcast on BBC Radio’s Saturday Night Theatre on 9 August 1975. It was later issued on two 33rpm discs in the last week of December 1976, followed by audio cassette (produced by Sylvia Gartner) in 1984.

Judge Mathew Deacon (Vincent Price)
Robert Deacon, his son (Peter Whitman)
Mrs. Northcott (Coral Browne)
Sybil, her daughter (Sheila Grant)
Dorothy, Sybil’s daughter (Elizabeth Proud)
Nicholas, Sybil’s son (John Rye)
Griffin, an undergraduate (Michael Cochrane)
Professor Forrester (Hugh Manning)
Sir Richard Burnett (Haydn Jones)
Morris (Paul Gaymon)
Jessie (Norma Ronald)

TV writer and producer Victor Pemberton (b 1931) is best known as the inventor of the sonic screwdriver in TV’s original Doctor Who series. He first appeared on the show in a non-speaking role in the Patrick Troughton story, The Moonbase, playing scientist Jules Faure, who ended up being converted into a Cyberman. He became a script editor on that story, before working on Tombs of the Cyberman and Fury from the Deep, which saw the departure of the Doctor’s companion, Victoria, and also the introduction of that iconic piece of Who kit, the sonic screwdriver. Pemberton died, aged 85, on 13 August 13, 2017.

Watch an interview with him about his career here…

And do check out his superb 1966 sci-fi serial, The Slide, starring Maurice Denham and Roger Delgado:









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