Collector finds more than 90 lost recordings of 'Desert Island Discs'

American entertainer Bing Crosby (born Harry Crosby Jr, 1903 - 1977) performs on stage at the Concord Pavilion, Concord, California, August 16, 1977. The performance, billed as 'Bing Crosby & Friends,' was his last live performance in the United States. (Photo by Janet Fries/Getty Images)
Bing Crosby was one of the stars who featured on the unearthed tapes. (Getty Images)

Singer Bing Crosby and dancer Dame Margot Fonteyn are among the stars on old Desert Island Disc tapes that have just been discovered.

The collection of tapes – which also include painter David Hockney and actor Dirk Bogarde – had previously been missing.

But audio collector Richard Harrison has now unearthed more than 90 recordings of the BBC Radio 4 programme, which started in the 40s.

Read more: Everything we learned from Kate Moss on Desert Island Discs

Harrison told the BBC that he had been keen on finding Desert Island Discs tapes because it is "such an iconic programme".

Margot Fonteyn
Margot Fonteyn was on Desert Island Discs. (PA)

He collects many old recordings from auctions and car boot sales, then later plays them to see what he has found.

The collector – who is from Lowestoft in Suffolk – said that it was a "great feeling".

"You open up a box and you have no idea what might be on the tape," he said.

British actor Dirk Bogarde at the 37th International Cannes Film Festival are in front of the Carlton Hotel, near the Cannes Croisette on May 12, 1984. (AP Photo/Michel Lipchitz)
One tape featured Dirk Bogarde. (AP)

The shows include the stars being asked which items they would pick if they were to be cast away on a desert island.

US star Crosby asked for a thesaurus and a stick so that he might be able to "do some useful writing".

And ballerina Dame Margot wanted the "mask that skin divers use".

Hockney said he would take a pornographic book entitled Route 69 for reading material.

Desert Island Discs started in 1942 and it was originally presented by broadcaster Roy Plomley, with other hosts including Sue Lawley, Kirsty Young and Lauren Laverne.

Lauren Laverne pictured at Save the Children???s Christmas Tree Sessions, at the Union Chapel in north London - a night of live music and entertainment, where all ticket sales raise money for the charity???s Syria appeal. The event was curated and hosted by DJ Lauren Laverne in the run up to Christmas Jumper Day on Friday 13th December.
Lauren Laverne hosts the show. (PA)

Three years ago it was named the greatest radio programme of all time.

Read more: Desert Island Discs named 'greatest radio programme of all time'

It beat shows such as The Archers and Round The Horne to top the list in the Radio Times.

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