Roger Moore filming at Luton Airport - not as James Bond but The Saint

Roger Moore filming The Saint at Luton Airport in 1969.
Roger Moore filming The Saint at Luton Airport in 1969.

The Saint was a mystery spy thriller TV series that aired in the UK between 1962 and 1969 and attracted millions of viewers.

Based on the literary character Simon Templar created by Leslie Charteris in the 1920s, a total of 118 episodes were made, 71 of them in black and white.

The Saint, played by Roger Moore, a future James Bond, is seen travelling to various places across London and around the world.

Almost the whole series was shot at Elstree Studios in Hertfordshire, with very few scenes filmed on location elsewhere. This was achieved by making extensive use of the sets at Elstree, with early blue screen technology to simulate different locations in the background and painted or projected backdrops.

But an exceptionwas made for one of the final episodes when a film crew came to Luton Airport for action scenes showing The Saint flying a helicopter.

Some years earlier, rumours had been rife in South Bedfordshire that Moore was planning to buy a large house in the village of Studham, which would have been convenient for travelling to and from Elstree, but in the end it didn’t materialise.

Moore, now 87-year-old Sir Roger Moore, went on to star as 007 in seven Bond movies between 1973 and 1985.

The Saint was revived in 1978 as Return Of The Saint, starring Ian Ogilvy as Templar.