It was a gradual process and even more gradual decision. I was commissioned to research a TV film on “The Profumo Affair” of the early 1960s. After a year of personal interviews, trips to the newspaper libraries and travelling around the UK following leads, I came to realize that I had far more material than could possibly ever be used in a 90 minutes film.
I also came to the obvious conclusion that War Minister, John Profumo, was not the focal point of my research. The far more interesting, complex and fascinating character in the whole “Profumo Affair” was the society osteopath, Stephen Ward.
My realization was confirmed when I was invited to a rambling farmhouse in Lincolnshire where my host invited me to open a trunk in his attic which, he said, contained handwritten manuscripts, reel-to-reel tapes and letters, all written or recorded by Stephen Ward while he was on remand in prison awaiting trial.
When I returned home that evening I immediately set about transferring the tapes onto cassettes and, through the scratchy quality of the 1960s recordings, emerged Ward’s compelling voice.
So, after over a year of discussing Stephen Ward with almost 100 people who had known him, I finally heard his voice summing up his case very objectively and very succinctly. I was mesmerized. I realized then that a grave miscarriage of justice had taken place and, above anything else, I wanted to rectify it.
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Genre – Politics, Espionage, Scandal
Rating – PG-16