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Fantasy book I heard as a BBC radio serialisation when I was a child, c.1970-75, though it was probably much older and had a wartime or even Victorian vibe. I didn't hear all the episodes and never knew the title but I've always wondered what it was.

Two children, a girl and a boy who are unknown to each other in real life, meet every night in a dream world. I think they both believe the other is just part of the dream world.

In their dreams, they have adventures together. I remember them running away from an old fashioned policeman with a loud whistle and hiding in a wood pile.

I think only as adults do they realise they were both real and co-dreaming. Then they either run into each other or try to find each other.

I believe it was heading for a romantic ending.

This could have been one of the BBC's "classic serials".

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Might it be one of the adaptations of Marianne Dreams by Catherine Storr?

Marianne is a young girl who is bedridden with a long-term illness. She draws a picture to fill her time, and finds that she spends her dreams within the picture she has drawn. As time goes by, she becomes sicker, and starts to spend more and more time trapped within her fantasy world, and her attempts to make things better by adding to and crossing out things in the drawing make things progressively worse. Her only companion in her dreamworld is a boy called Mark, who is also a long-term invalid in the real world.

It has been adapted for BBC Radio, apparently more than once (alongside TV, film, and play adaptations). The sequel, Marianne and Mark dealt with the eponymous characters meeting as young adults, with Marianne having decided that her experiences were just dreams.

Found with a search for bbc radio boy girl "dream world", which led me to a review of Escape Into Night, a TV adaptation broadcast by ITV.

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  • Yes, that must be it. Many things like drawing the house and accidently drawing somebody with an angry face seem so familiar. How could I have been wondering about this all these years while there were writing a TV series, film, play and even an opera based on it? I'll have to look for them. Thanks so much. May 6, 2022 at 13:05
  • @PotatoCrisp: Unfortunately, much like the TV serial I linked, it sounds like the version you listened to may be among the lost broadcasts from a time when the BBC routinely didn't record broadcasts, or erased the tapes to make room for the next show. May 6, 2022 at 13:27

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