In 1820, The Bright Star, a merchant ship captained by Charles Bulman, is wrecked off the North African coast. Charles is believed to have perished at sea; it is rumoured he sunk his ship for the insurance. Bulman’s wife Emma and twelve-year-old son Dominic are left destitute in London. They are forced to sell the family’s Greenwich home, and travel to Yorkshire, where they eventually open a guesthouse along with the kindly, if frequently inebriated, William Woodcock, who had served under Charles at the Battle of Trafalgar.
But unbeknown to Emma and Dominic, Captain Bulman is alive – and while they struggle to make ends meet in England, he is using all his strength and determination to fight his way back to them, enduring imprisonment, slavery, villainous bandits, and deadly sword and musket fights.
This epic adventure of separation and survival captivated viewers of all ages, and features a luminary cast that includes Richard Todd (The Dam Busters) as Captain Bulman, Brian Blessed (Z-Cars) as William Woodcock, Julian Glover (Doctor Who) as Mr. Jackson and Hildegard Neil (A Touch of Class) as Emma. Dominic is played by Murray Dale (son of Carry On star Jim Dale). Among the scriptwriters is award-winning children’s author Penelope Lively, while Emmy award winner Terence Williams (Hadleigh) is among the producers.
All thirteen episodes of this series were originally screened in 1974. A sequel, Dominic, followed in 1976.
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