...I'm John Banks - welcome to my website.

The majority of my working life has been spent in the theatre with companies including
York Theatre Royal, Cheltenham Everyman, Sheffield Crucible, Bristol Old Vic, Manchester Royal Exchange and the National Theatre in London.

Television work includes Emmerdale, Coronation Street, and 'Allo, Allo!'. I have also worked on a number of radio drama and comedy productions with the BBC.

Since March 2009, I have enjoyed playing a huge variety of characters in numerous audio-drama stories for Big Finish Productions and Games Workshop, with whom I have recorded around 200 audio dramas*, details of which can be found in the postings below.

There are also details listed here of the more than 80 audio books* I've recorded since March 2013,
including the unabridged New Revised Standard Version of The Bible, for companies including RNIB, audible.co.uk, Hachette, W.F. Howes, Little Brown Group, Penguin Random House, Games Workshop, Fantom Films & Ladbroke Audio.

(*figures at October 2016)

I hope you find something of interest here and come back soon for further updates.

For all posts and audio samples, please scroll down...

Catherine, David & me as Gully......

Catherine, David & me as Gully......
May 2016

Reviews & comments:

The Malazan Empire

Over 7 books recorded since December, John Banks has had to create unique voices for 583 characters. Quite amazing!

Neil Gardner - producer

Mervyn Stone: The Axeman Cometh

John Banks is a voice genius...

Nev Fountain - writer

Mervyn Stone... played by the note-perfect John Banks.

Matt Hills - Reviews in Time and Space

Dr. Who: The Sleeping City

I also must draw attention to John Banks who is an exceptional voice artist and in this one story performs more characters that I can count. ... it is listening to episodes like this one that really do let his talents shine through.

Tony Jones - Red Rocket Rising


...playing several parts, was the brilliant Big Finish regular John Banks - it was as if there were about 40 different actors in the other booth.

James Moran - writer

I went for the best of the best and brought in voice artiste extraordinaire John Banks.

Paul Spragg - producer


...also features the mind - bogglingly versatile and reliable John Banks

Jonathan Morris - writer

Dead Funny:

The acting is first rate… wonderfully played by John Banks as Richard – his impersonation of Eric Morecambe is worth the admission money alone.

Beverly Greenberg: Bolton Evening News

A Spy Like No Other:

This is the best audio book ever.

The Cult Den

Mr. Happiness:

This early and unfamiliar play by David Mamet is a character study of a 1930s radio counsellor, dispensing suave advice to his devoted listeners. John Banks brings out the wry comedy of this – comedy quite unappreciated by the character – with a clever range of gesture and vocal tone.

Jeremy Kingston: The Times

All My Sons:

This is a beautifully crafted piece ...and it affords a wonderful opportunity for John Readman* to do his All-American Boy act as Chris Keller. This most polished and well observed performance as the blighted son of a blighted father must rank as one of his finest accomplishments yet. ( * see Profile)

The Stage

The Ordeals of Sherlock Holmes

Kudos should also go to John Banks. Lestrade can be a thankless part, but Banks rose to the challenge, playing a pivotal role in this decades long arc.

Raissa Devereux - SciFiPulse

The Judgement of Sherlock Holmes

John Banks is multi-tasking, both as the superb Lestrade and also the villainous and no doubt moustache twirling Sebastian Moran. They sound completely different and I bow to his talent.

Sue Davies - SFcrowsnest

Further reviews and comments are included with specific postings throughout the site.

The War Doctor

The War Doctor
December 2015

Media Content

This Windows 10 Googleblog is designed and best viewed on Firefox; unfortunately, some media content may not function properly with other browsers or operating systems.

Search This Blog

Games Workshop

Games Workshop
Ultramarines... "Only the Faithful!"

The Herald of Sanguinius - short story

The Horus Heresy

The Horus Heresy

The Long Night - short story

The Imperial Fists...

The Imperial Fists...

Saturday, 22 October 2016

Vox Tenebris

Another quick update release, this time on a very interesting audio drama from Games Workshop and here are some details:

Vox Tenebris

A War Zone Fenris audio drama

In the midst of the daemonic assault on the Fenris system, a Space Wolf and Dark Angel must overcome their enmity and work together if either is to survive.

When the Fenris system is overrun by the forces of Chaos, the Imperium rallies to its defence, and Space Marines from many Chapters arrive to lend their aid to the beleaguered defenders. The battle to reclaim the worlds of the Space Wolves is waged on many levels – in space, on land and in the very seas themselves.

A Space Wolf and a Dark Angel must join forces when the rest of their strikeforce is slaughtered by daemons, deep underground. Unless they can find their way through the underworld back to the surface, they are doomed – but the trials that face them will test them to their very limit.

 Performed by John Banks, Steve Conlin and Toby Longworth.

Written by Robbie MacNiven & Produced by Matt Renshaw.
Running time 65 minutes.

For some reason, the 'slideshow' feature which used to be situated at the bottom of this web page, has been removed. It's annoying, to say the least, that possibly as the result of a software update, a widget has ceased to function. I'll try to get it back up and running again, but it may now be impossible...

...all for now, more just as soon as it happens!

Saturday, 15 October 2016

Bleeding Shadows...

And on we go. The last eighteen or so months has been a very busy time in the recording studio for me and as a consequence, lots of audio stuff is now being released. It's tricky to work out an exact correlation between recording and publication, as some recordings have a longer production process than others. My recording of The Bible for example is still caught up in that process; I had originally thought it might have been published back in May. But as you can see from the 'new releases' area to the left of this page, highlighted in bright green, even in the last few months of the year, new work is still being published - and often to my surprise.

This week has seen the release of two new recordings; one, an anthology of short stories from Games Workshop and the other, an intriguing mystery, Bleeding Heart Square by Andrew Taylor, which is available to download from audible.co.uk or Amazon.

Here are some details of both recordings:

1934, London. Into the decaying cul-de-sac of Bleeding Heart Square steps aristocratic Lydia Langstone fleeing an abusive marriage. 

However, unknown to Lydia, a dark mystery haunts Bleeding Heart Square. What happened to Miss Penhow, the middle-aged spinster who owns the house and who vanished four years earlier? Why is a seedy plain-clothes policeman obsessively watching the square? What is making struggling journalist Rory Wentwood so desperate to contact Miss Penhow? And why are parcels of rotting hearts being sent to Joseph Serridge, the last person to see Miss Penhow alive?

A Horus Heresy anthology

From the battlefields of Phall and Isstvan, to the haunted shadows of Terra itself – the Horus Heresy rages on across the galaxy in this collection of short stories and novellas.

This anthology spans the entire Horus Heresy, with short stories from Dan Abnett, Graham McNeill and Gav Thorpe, as well as two brand new novella-length tales. Learn the fate of Rogal Dorn's fleet originally sent to Isstvan III and descend deeper into the darkness of the Night Lords Legion.

Performed by John Banks* Jonathan Keeble and David Timson, Produced by Matthew Renshaw 

This anthology contains the following stories:

The Crimson Fist by John French
The Dark King by Graham McNeill *
The Lightning Tower by Dan Abnett *
The Kaban Project by Graham McNeill *
Raven's Flight by Gav Thorpe *
Death of a Silversmith by Graham McNeill *
Prince of Crows by Aaron Dembski-Bowden

From the battlefields of Phall and Isstvan, to the haunted shadows of Terra itself - the greatest war in the history of mankind rages on. While the traitor Legions continue their campaign of terror across the galaxy, preparations are made for the defence of the Imperial Palace and the final, inevitable reckoning that must yet come between Horus and the Emperor...

Running time: 11 hours and 44 minutes

I'll see if I can find some audio clips to go along with these titles, just to give a flavour of the content, although alas, that's not always possible. In the meantime, my latest news is that I started recording a series of classic sci-fi novels on Friday, which will hopefully see the light of day early in the new year, so much more on that subject nearer the time of publication - and having had a lot of fun with the Games Workshop crew recently, I'm recording more with them next week. top secret at the moment of course, but patience will always be rewarded - so I'm told!

Thanks for stopping by...

...all for now, more just as soon as it happens!

Sunday, 9 October 2016


Good afternoon! Much to relay of recent and future adventures, but for the moment, here's a 'newsflash' update to note the release of this audio book:

The tumult of great powers colliding has passed, and the city of Darujhistan and its citizens can at last get on with what matters: trading, bickering, politicking and enjoying all the good things in life. However, not all are ready to leave the past behind.

A treasure hunter digging amongst the burial grounds that surround the city is about to uncover a hidden crypt. He will open the last of a series of sealed vaults - the one that no other dared touch - and in so doing set free something so terrifying that the knowledge of its interment may have been systematically wiped from all history.

Fortune hunters are also at work far to the south. When a fragment of Moon's Spawn, once the home of Anomander Rake, Son of Darkness, crashed into the Rivan Sea, it created a chain of small islands. Legends and rumours already surround them. The most potent of these is that here is hidden the Throne of Night, claimed by some to be the seat of Mother Dark herself.

Either way, all who seek this ancient artefact - renegade mages, hardened mercenaries, even a Malazan army deserter - believe it will bestow unlimited power upon the eventual possessor. The stakes are high, greed is rife, betrayal inevitable, and murder and chaos lie in wait....

Written by Ian C Esslemont, produced by Neil Gardner and narrated by me. 

Running time 25 hours, 23 minutes

A Random House Audiobook, available now from audible.co.uk

...all for now, more just as soon as it happens!

Sunday, 2 October 2016


Once again, my apologies for the lack of updates over the last few weeks; my excuse as ever, is that I've been immersed in preparation and recording. Details of what I've been doing will certainly appear here as soon as possible, although alas, not in this posting, as the intensity of work continues and I'm in the studio for the next several days. Before the middle of next month, I'll be recording four audio dramas and six audio books and time, as you can imagine, is at an absolute premium.

Such a short update, but there is something I can mention immediately, which is the release of an anthology of Warhammer stories that appear now as a single edition and here are some details:

Corax: A Horus Heresy anthology

The Lord of Ravens, Master of Deliverance, Primarch Corus Corvax of the Raven Guard takes centre stage in a collection of works by Gav Thorpe that explore his campaign of vengeance against Horus' allies and his desperate attempts to hold his Legion together.

After Isstvan, after Deliverance, the Raven Guard still endure. Their primarch Corvus Corax has rallied countless warriors to his banner, striking back at the forces of the Warmaster on every front – from the degenerate hereteks of the Mechanicum to the cruel legionaries of the Sons of Horus, none shall escape his wrath. But although Corax has managed to stall the physical corruption of his own Space Marines, what of their spirit? And what sinister end must await those who dwell forever in the darkness?

This anthology contains all of Gav Thorpe’s tales of the Raven Guard in the Horus Heresy – the novellas Soulforge and Ravenlord, and short stories ‘The Shadowmasters’, ‘The Value of Fear’ and ‘Raptor’. Also included is the brand new novella Weregeld, taking Corax’s legend to its grim conclusion.

 Narrated by Gareth Armstrong and John Banks  

Produced by Matthew Renshaw & Written by Gav Thorpe 

Audiobook running time 12 hours and 49 minutes

 * * * * *

Also,  released on the 6th October from Audible.co.uk, is my audio book version of Ian C. Esslemont's Novel of The Malazan Empire: Orb, Sceptre, Throne. 

...all for now, more just as soon as it happens!

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

...an 'august' update - hopefully!

Only the second update this month and very little in the way of excuses as to why I've been away from the blogosphere. Wait a minute; did you say 'Olympic Games'? Ah, yes; I have been glued to the Olympics and huge congratulations to all, medal winners or not and indeed to Rio for hosting the whole thing under difficult circumstances. Roll on Tokyo!

I wonder what events the Space Marines would be good at? Weight lifting? Shooting, TaeKwon-Do? At least those and several others I should imagine; but I digress.

Once again those good folks at Games Workshop have managed to spring a surprise or two over the last couple of weeks and I should give proper details of them here. A while ago, I mentioned that the second quartet of stories in the Realmgate Wars series had been released under the collective title Knights of Vengeance. Subsequently, the entire eight story saga was also released under the title The Realmgate Wars: The Audio Collection. What I have only recently noticed however, is that the first four stories have also been released under a collective title, The Hunt For Nagash. And so, perhaps somewhat out of sequence, here are the details:

In the long-ago Age of Myth, Sigmar's pantheon of gods conquered the Mortal Realms and ruled them in peace – until the coming of Chaos. Among the greatest of Sigmar's allies was Nagash, the god of Death and ruler of the underworlds of Shyish.

At the height of the Allpoints war, Nagash betrayed his oaths of loyalty and doomed Sigmar's plans to failure. Now, as the God-King's Stormcast Eternals battle to liberate the Mortal Realms, a force from the Hallowed Knghts Stormhost has been sent to find Nagash and bring him back into the fold. But as they search the Realm of Death, they find only the servants of Chaos – until a chance encounter provides hope. If they can trust a vampire, that is.

The Hunt for Nagash Audio Drama Collection consists of four audio dramas by Josh Reynolds, in a zip file:

Performed by:

 Gareth Armstrong, John Banks, Ian Brooker, Steve Conlin, Jonathan Keeble, Stephen Perring,
 Saul Reichlin and Luis Soto

Written by Josh Reynolds & Produced by Matthew Renshaw
* * * * *
And secondly for this month and coming as a complete surprise, a release from the Warhammer 40,000 range of stories, which are set some 10,000 years after the original Space Marine adventures.
Deathwatch: The Last Guardian
Dark Angels Brother Balthasar and a Deathwatch kill-team investigate a long-dead eldar craftworld infested with daemons…
As part of an elite Deathwatch kill team, Brother Balthasar of the Dark Angels joins a special Inquisitorial mission to the eldar craftworld of Kher-Ys. Long ago ravaged by the daemonic forces of Slaanesh, the craftworld may still harbour the unlikeliest of allies for the Space Marines, and the key to a greater victory for the Chapter.
Performed by:
Gareth Armstrong, John Banks, Tim Bentinck, Steve Conlin, Jonathan Keeble, 
Penelope Rawlins and Tania Rodrigues 

Written by C Z Dunn & Produced by Matthew Renshaw

* * * * *

And that's just about it for this posting; I'm currently preparing an audio book to record in October and awaiting some audio drama scripts for early September. I think there might also be another audio book or two to fit in around that schedule, although, as the sun is shining and the great outdoors beckons, I reckon I can safely defer any proper activity at least for the rest of the afternoon - a bit of executive time management - The Doctor would surely approve!

...all for now, more as soon as it happens!

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Novels of The Malazan Empire: Stonewielder

Released by Random House Audiobooks on 4th August, Stonewielder, by Ian C. Esslemont.

Greymane believed he'd outrun his past. With his school for swordsmanship in Falar, he was looking forward to a quiet life, although his colleague, Kyle, wasn't as enamoured with life outside the mercenary company, the Crimson Guard. However, it seems it is not so easy for an ex-Fist of the Malazan Empire to disappear, especially one under sentence of death from that same Empire.

For there is a new Emperor on the throne of Malaz, and he is dwelling on the ignominy that is the Empire's failed invasion of the Korel subcontinent. In the vaults beneath Unta, the Imperial capital, lie the answers to that disaster. And out of this buried history surfaces the name Stonewielder.

In Korel, Lord Protector Hiam, commander of the Stormguard, faces the potential annihilation of all that he holds dear. With few remaining men and a crumbling stone wall that has seen better days, he confronts an ancient enemy: the seaborne Stormriders have returned.

Religious war also threatens these lands. The cult of the Blessed Lady, which had stood firm against the Riders for millennia, now seeks to eradicate its rivals. And as chaos looms, a local magistrate investigating a series of murders suddenly finds himself at the heart of a far more ancient and terrifying crime - one that has tainted an entire land....

Stonewielder is an enthralling new chapter in the epic story of a thrillingly imagined world.

Produced by Neil Gardner and narrated by me. Running time is 26 hours and 42 minutes.

...all for now, more just as soon as it happens!

Thursday, 28 July 2016

listen, enjoy, repeat...

Y'know, those good folks at Games Workshop do seem to like springing surprises and this month has had it's fair share. Earlier in July, I mentioned the four story collection of Realmgate Wars audio dramas Knights of Vengeance. 

Now also available, in a single box set collection, are the eight audio dramas that make up the entire epic saga: The Prisoner of the Black Sun, Sands of Blood, The Lords of Helstone and Bridge of Seven Sorrows by Josh Reynolds & Beasts of Cartha, Fist of Gork, Fist of Mork, Great Red and Only the Faithful by David Guymer.

Here's some fabulous artwork and further details of the stories in this collection:

A journey into the Realm of Death in search of Nagash himself leads the Hallowed Knights Warrior Chamber known as the Bull-Hearts into a dangerous alliance with an arch-betrayer... and the consequences of that decision lead them on another hunt, searching the Realm of Beasts in a quest for vengeance. Eight audio dramas weave a tale of hope, treachery and retribution that crosses Realms, life and death.

Performed by Gareth Armstrong, John Banks, Ian Brooker, Beth Chalmers, Steve Conlin,
 Jonathan Keeble, Toby Longworth, Stephen Perring, Saul Reichlin, Luis Soto and Ramon Tikaram 

Produced by Matthew Renshaw

Also released this month, is the audio drama The Either, again with some fabulous cover art. This story has been available in other formats earlier this year, but here it is now in all it's individual glory!

Tybalt Marr, Captain of the Sons of Horus, swears to bring down a thorn in the Warmaster's side: the commander of the so-called "Shattered Legions", the infamous Shadrak Meduson.

Captain Tybalt Marr of the Sons of Horus, so often overlooked by his more glory-hungry brethren, returns to his Legion in triumph. However, his boasts of having slain the infamous Iron Hands warleader Shadrak Meduson soon fall flat when he learns of the recent assassination attempt on Horus himself. Gathering his forces upon the conquered world of Dwell, Marr returns to battle against the Shattered Legions, determined to earn his rightful place in history.

Performed by Gareth Armstrong, John Banks, Robin Bowerman, Ian Brooker, Steve Conlin, 
Toby Longworth, Luis Soto & Ramon Tukaram 

Written by Graham McNeill & Produced by Matthew Renshaw

...all for now, more just as soon as it hapens!

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

The Dragon Lords: Fool's Gold

Released today from Hachette Audio UK:

It's not easy to live in a world ruled by dragons. The taxes are high and their control is complete. But for one group of bold misfits, it's time to band together and steal back some of that wealth.

No one said they were smart.

Unabridged audio book narrated by me with a running time of 15 hours - 46 minutes. 

...all for now, more just as soon as it happens!

Thursday, 14 July 2016

...hi John, yeah, it's a great part - a gangster. Yeah, a gangster, really mean; gritty. Oh - and he's a raccoon...

Sometimes I wonder if the guys at Big Finish - Mssrs Richardson, Briggs, Bentley, Dorney & Fitton - get together from time to time, share copious amonts of alcohol and devise characters commensurate with the phrase "...betcha Banksy can't play that!"

Who knows? Whatever the case may be, the 'challenges' that have so far come my way, include being required to play several Gestalt Entities ie, The Morass, a swarm of leeches, a sponge, a fog, several Metatraxi and Numlocks (could have been Tabshifts or Alt Gr Backspaces!) a whole host of other creatures and alien beings, a dingo, an octopus and most recently - a raccoon. A raccoon. Happy to pick up the gauntlet and run with it, I decided to make him Swiss - just for the fun of it! And here is the result:

Come to Ricosta! Tropical climate, untouched beaches, fabulous cuisine... and no extradition treaties. The perfect retirement planet for a certain type of 'business person' – such as Ms Melanie Bush, formerly the co-owner of the Iceworld emporium, now on the run from her former criminal associate's criminal associates...

Some other former associates of Ms Bush are abroad in this space Costa del Crime, however. Not long ago, the time and space traveller known as the Doctor arrived here, alongside his sometimes-criminal associate, the reformed juvenile offender Ace. But now the Doctor's gone missing – and Melanie Bush is about to learn that on the planet Ricosta, the wages of sin... are death.

 Sylvester McCoy The Doctor   Bonnie Langford Mel   Sophie Aldred Ace 
Ginny Holder Gloria/Secretary  Des McAleer Lefty Lonnigan  Stephen Hagan Nathan Later
 Harry Myers Atomon/Sperovore Banker/Steward 
John Banks Mayor/Sperovore Auditor/Sperovore Financer 

Other parts portrayed by the cast

Written by Matt Fitton
Directed by Ken Bentley  

This is quite an unusual addition to the Big Finish playlist and I'm very much looking forward to giving it a listen. In the meantime, I'm back in the BF studio next week for more fun; but that's...

...all for now, more just as soon as it happens!

Thursday, 7 July 2016

...what's going on?

...a line from Eastenders or a classic album from Marvin Gaye? Your call; mercy, mercy me...

So this month of July brings some new stuff for the ears of the world to wrap themselves around and a few audio surprises to savour. I've also been in a variety of windowless rooms, otherwise known as recording studios, to lay down some heavy sci-fi/fantasy beats, for no other reason than to bring joy and enlightenment to the universe - well, someone had to give it a go.

The first thing to mention this month is the release of Only The Faithful, the fourth instalment of The Knights of Vengeance series from Games Workshop, in which I play Lord Relictor Ramus. Here are some details:

At last, the Hallowed Knights have cornered their quarry... but the vampire they seek has amassed an army of the dead, and the price of vengeance will be dear indeed.

After a gruelling journey, the warriors of the Hallowed Knights and Astral Templars have found their quarry in the Sea of Bones. During the hunt, Mannfred the vampire lord has raised a mighty undead host to protect the realmgate he has claimed.

Whilst Ramus of the Hallowed Knights seeks the vampire’s head and Vandalus of the Astral Templars wants to reclaim the realmgate, both must fight as one and alongside their orruk allies if they are to triumph. Against one of Nagash’s mortarchs, the test will be stern and only the faithful will prevail...

Performed by:

Gareth Armstrong, John Banks, Ian Brooker, Steve Conlin, Jonathan Keeble, 
Stephen Perring, Saul Reichlin and Luis Soto 

Written by David Guymer & Produced by Matthew Renshaw

One of the surprises I alluded to above, is that all four stories in this series are available together; whoda thought it?

As this is only the first week of July, the rest of the month's releases are, well, yet to be released. I will of course publish details here when they become available; in the meantime, here's news of an unabridged audio book I recorded recently for Hachette, which is scheduled for release on the 19th:

It's not easy to live in a world ruled by dragons. The taxes are high, and their control is complete.

But for one group of bold misfits, it's time to band together and steal back some of that wealth.
No one said they were smart.

Written by Jon Hollins and narrated by me, with a running time of 15 hours, 46 minutes.

* * * * *

There's much more to come this month, but for the time being and in time honoured fashion, I'll sign off by saying...

...all for now, more just as soon as it happens!