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The Bill Axed After 27 Years

Guest -Kevin-

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The Bill will end this autumn following ITV's decision to drop the long-running police drama after 27 years.

"Times change, and so do the tastes of our audience," said Peter Fincham, the channel's director of television.

The move follows a major revamp that saw the drama relaunched as a weekly programme in a post-watershed slot.

Producers Talkback Thames said they were "devastated" by a decision that "may result in a significant number of redundancies" for the company.

"We are incredibly proud of what the show has achieved," said CEO Lorraine Heggessey.

"It is a credit to everyone who has worked on The Bill that the series will be signing out on a creative and editorial high, with both critical and industry-wide acclaim and a loyal fan base who have supported the show throughout."

Creative decision

ITV said it would invest the money it spent on the programme - first seen on the channel in 1983 - on new peak-time drama commissions.

Fincham said The Bill had been "the home of some of the UK's best serial drama storylines and a great showcase for terrific scriptwriting and fine acting talent".

"Thanks to a superb production team, it's been one of the great institutions of television drama," he continued.

Set around the fictional Sun Hill police station in London, The Bill began life as a one-off drama entitled Woodentop.

ITV was impressed enough to commission a weekly series that eventually became a thrice-weekly soap.

The channel insisted the move to axe the show was a creative decision and was not done to cut costs.

"Whilst The Bill will come to an end in 2010, we will continue to invest more in drama programming than any other commercial broadcaster in the UK," said Fincham.


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I am not shocked in the slightest either. But really disappointed because it was one of my favorite TV shows before they did the revamp and totally ruined the format - it was also extreemly popular in Australia rating top 5 on Saturday nights every week, again before the revamp when it dropped significantly in the ratings. I've found it impossible to get into the flow since they changed it all, it went from a fast paced action packed drama series to a slow paced emotionless, characterless flop.

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^ I agree... I'm not suprised at all by the news, but I am dissapointed, as like you said... before they changed it all... The Bill was one of my favourite TV shows. Once they changed the format, narrowed it to once a week, and then changed the theme tune, with the opening credits.. I just couldnt get into it.

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Its a shame its going, its an institution. I watched it from the first episode for a few years. We used to live in London and they filmed Bill scenes near us quite often. I saw lots of actors around there over the years, on the bus, walking etc.

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