As an engineer, Stanley was obviously involved with a whole load of radio material, whether it was things he recorded for the BBC itself or stuff he actually appeared in as a performer.


During the 40s and 50s, his 'proper' work would involve recording various items onto an acetate master with a sapphire needle. Later, they'd press these up as 12" vinyl records - BBC 'transcription discs' that were usually distributed across the nation's radio stations and played over the air as part of the progamming.


A lot of these discs crop up for auction every now and then (on eBay and the likes) and if you're lucky, you'll occasionally come across an obscure Stan recording from way back. A couple I came across recently (but didn't win. Bums) included a sketch from 'The Spice of Life' and a two-way Oxford Union debate with Gerard Hoffnung.


So with this fairly arbitrary catalogue in mind, here are as many Stan radio progs as I can summon up given the information currently available.


If you have any more stuff to add to the list or if any of this is wrong, please get in touch. Thanks to all those who have verified what's below (see credits).


The Spice of Life - October 1956 (BBC)

This was Stanley's entry into mainstream BBC radio entertainment. It was a weekly radio vehicle for Ted Ray with a supporting cast that included June Whitfield, Derek Guyler and  Kenneth Connor, and music from Harry Rabinowitz with the Revue Orchestra.


Almost all of it was sketch based with the script being written by Gene Crowley and production by old Stan mate Roy Speer. Stanley appeared in the first dozen or so programmes, but you'd be hard pushed to find any readily available recordings. top


Bernard Braden  - mid 50s (BBC)

One person who Stanley had a hell of a lot of time for was Canadian broadcaster Bernard Braden who became a fixture on British radio during the 50s. Stanley appeared on a few of BB's radio shows but I can't help you with any definitive ep guide, although they might have appeared together either on 'Breakfast With Braden' or 'Bedtime With Braden, or both.


Stanley readily admitted they 'got on like a house on fire', saying BB was a 'great feed'. He did, however, recognise the economic agenda when the Beeb put them together: Stanley was already a BBC employee so consequently he was cheap! top


Beyond Our Ken - July 1958 (BBC)

Stanley actually appeared in the first ever episode of Kenneth Horne's original (and later to be long-running under various guises) comedy series along with stalwarts Kenneth Williams, Hugh Paddick and Ron Moody. He played 'Mr Henry Spindlethroe of the International Atomic Research Association' in a three-minute sketch where he answered Ken's queries about atomic power in his own peculiar way.


Written by Eric Merriman and the excellent Barry Took. top


Does The Team Think? - June 1960 (BBC)

This was a sort of tongue-in-cheek 'Brains Trust' kind of thing where questions were fired off by chairman MacDonald Hoblay to regulars like Ted Ray and Jimmy Edwards, who would come back with the funny stuff.


Stanley appeared in Series 4, programme 15, on 16 June 1950 along with Edwards, Ray and Cyril Fletcher.  top


Just A Minute - May 1987 and May 1989 (BBC)

Bizarrely, Stanley only ever appeared on two (count 'em) episodes of 'Just A Minute'. Not only that, but the ones he was actually on were some 20 years (count 'em) after the programme started. His first appearance was alongside regulars Kenneth Williams, Clement Freud and Peter Jones. His next (and last) was two years later with Jones, Derek Nimmo and Tim Rice.


You'd have thought Stan would have been a natural for this sort of thing but if you have a scrat around in the (well worth a read) 'Kenneth Williams Diaries', there's an interesting entry under 'Tuesday 20 January, 1987' that might have explained why he wasn't called up sooner:

'J.A.M' at the Paris [studios]. It was Peter Jones, Eleanor Summerfield, Freud & me, and in the 2nd team it was Stanley Unwin. Both games OK but Stanley was all over the place! Poor man! I fear that he is no longer able to cope with an audience. top


Quote...Unquote - 1995 (BBC)

Long-running (27 years!) panel game-ish programme hosted by Nigel Rees where celebrity guests basically have to guess who said what, when and why. Stanley appeared on two episodes - programmes 5 and 10 of Series 19 in 1995. top


The Smith Lecture - 2000 onwards (BBC)

This series of 'illustrated' monologues by crusty comedian Arthur Smith featured quite a few interjections by his Stanship, but I can't find an ep guide anywhere. I do know that the week Stan died, AS was trailing a tribute programme as the final part of his series but I either missed it or it was shifted to a different date.  top


Other stuff

Hmmm. He must have appeared on tons of radio over the last 50 years or so but the documentation has obviously gone a bit agley along the way (surely there wasn't such a huge gap between DTTT and JAM, for gawd's sake).


If you can add anything to this page by filling in the gaps then please, please drop me a line.


Awwww, go on. top