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The Solitary Cyclist 

A strange man on a bicycle follows a young music teacher as she bicycles on a lonely road to and from the city.


Paul Annett


Arthur Conan Doyle (by) (as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle), John Hawkesworth (developed for television by) | 1 more credit »




Episode complete credited cast:
Jeremy Brett ... Sherlock Holmes
David Burke ... Dr Watson
Barbara Wilshere ... Violet Smith
John Castle ... Carruthers
Michael Siberry ... Woodley
Ellis Dale Ellis Dale ... Williamson
Sarah Aitchison Sarah Aitchison ... Sarah Carruthers
Simon Bleakley Simon Bleakley ... Peter (as Simon Bleackley)
Penny Gowling Penny Gowling ... Mrs Dixon
Stafford Gordon Stafford Gordon ... Landlord
Rosalie Williams ... Mrs Hudson


Holmes is approached by Miss Violet Smith with a most peculiar problem. She has recently accepted a position with Mr. Carruthers as a music teacher for his 10 year old daughter. On Saturdays, she returns to her home to he with her mother and returns to Chilton Grange Manor on Mondays. She cycles the several miles to the train station and recently she has noticed a man, also on a bicycle, following her. He is quite blatantly there, stopping when she stops and always keeping the same distance from her but making no attempt to to hide his presence. She is worried at least in part because she recently rejected the advances of a Mr. Woodley who became upset and violent at the rejection. As Holmes soon deduces, she has good reason to be fearful, though not necessarily from the cyclist. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Mystery


TV-PG | See all certifications »


Official Sites:

Official site [France]





Release Date:

15 May 1984 (UK) See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Granada Television See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs



Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Holmes says that Williamson was unfrocked, which is an incorrect term for the Anglican church. The actual terminology is "deposed". See more »


[first lines]
Sherlock Holmes: Watson.
Dr Watson: Yes?
Sherlock Holmes: Watch.
[they move to his chemistry setup]
Sherlock Holmes: The chemical reaction you are about to witness will solve the mystery concerning the persecution of Mr John Vincent Harden.
Dr Watson: Oh. Excellent! The tobacco millionaire. Shall I take notes?
Sherlock Holmes: No, I will dictate in the fullness of time.
See more »


Version of Sherlock Holmes: The Solitary Cyclist (1968) See more »

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User Reviews

Holmes and Watson's relationship gels perfectly in this 4th episode.
13 October 2013 | by kfo9494See all my reviews

A sinister little tale involving a most beautiful female music teacher and some money hungry gents that just cannot seem to live up to the bargain of a card game.

The story was quite interesting as the female, Violet Smith who is also a bicycle enthusiast, is being followed while leaving her employment by a man in dark clothes also riding a bicycle. She is so worried that she employs Sherlock Holmes to look into the matter as she feels something or someone is out to get her.

But it will not be till further in the story that we, as viewers, learn of the plot that is afoot. It appears that there is more than one person that wants to marry the music teacher but all may not have the best plan at heart. Holmes, along with Dr Watson, must seek the reason for her troubles.

There are actually some nice scenes in this episode. From the exchange between Holmes to Watson about his useless undercover work, to Holmes fancy footwork in a fist-o-cuffs in a local pub- both very humorous situations. But do not think this is all smiles and laughter as some noticeable gun play will fill the afternoon air when the plot starts to climax. An entertaining show that was a pleasure to watch.

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