Why You NEED To Watch South Riding




Douglas Henshall,  Anna Maxwell Martin, David Morrissey



1. It’s A Unique Take On Our Past

South Riding is the story of a woman who doesn’t fit into her own era: a schoolteacher named Sarah Burton who’s determined to make her mark in the hard years of Depression-era Yorkshire. But this isn’t just another “gritty” tale of Northern strife. The tell-tale sign that we’re in for something unique is the fact that South Riding itself is a make-believe place. A gorgeous, sprawling slice of England that sprung directly from the imagination of novelist Winifred Holtby.

Yes, it’s based on the real landscapes of Yorkshire, but the fact that it’s also an invented realm, filled with big characters, sinister secrets, blazing confrontations and an often dream-like atmosphere, gives South Riding an almost fairy tale air. Well, a dark fairy tale at any rate, with Sarah Burton as its charismatic heroine.

Sarah Burton is played by Anna Maxwell Martin.

2. It’s No Ordinary Love Story

South Riding’s main story follows teacher Sarah Burton as she brings colour and energy to her school, inspiring the students and jolting the locals with her verve. And also rubbing local landowner Robert Carne up the wrong way. He’s a solidly old-fashioned sort of man, as keen on the past as Sarah is on the future, and he takes an instant dislike to Sarah’s no-nonsense, free spirited manner. He’s also a handsome and brooding sort. So far, so Darcy.

Except South Riding doesn’t follow the predictable route. Without giving anything away, this isn’t just a romantic saga of opposites attracting. Carne’s brooding is down to some seriously disturbing secrets from his past, and a struggle for redemption which Sarah becomes embroiled in. You know the thing about someone being “bad news” but all the more attractive for it?  That’s Robert Carne, and Sarah is about to discover it for herself. Robert Carne (David Morrissey) and Midge Carne (Katherine McGolpin).

3. It’s Got Stories To Sink Your Teeth Into

South Riding is far from just a (strange) romance. The story of Sarah and Robert, two people totally at odds but fated to be bound together and up-end each other’s lives, is mirrored by the huge changes in society going on around them, and there’s a huge supporting cast of characters to get stuck into as well.

They include Midge, Robert’s own daughter, whose sheltered upbringing under her protective father changes completely when she becomes one of Sarah’s pupils. There’s also Lydia, a student from the slum area known as the Shacks, whose talent might just offer her a way out of drudgery. One of Sarah’s few allies, meanwhile is social reformer Joe, while local Methodist minister Alfred wants to help the poor too – but has a dark burden of his own to carry.South Riding is the story of a woman who doesn’t fit into her own era.

4. It’s Based On A Hidden Gem

The story behind South Riding is almost as turbulent and emotional as the book and TV series itself. Its writer, Winifred Holtby, was a crusading journalist in her day, known for her “Viking-like” appearance and crusading articles that championed social change. In a tragic twist, her explosively talented life was cut short when she was diagnosed with a terminal illness while only in her 30s.

Knowing she only had a short time left, she got hard at work on her crowning achievement, the book that would be her legacy: South Riding. Battling through illness, she managed to finish it before passing away, but then a whole new battle began when her own mother became enraged at what her daughter had written. She even tried to stop it being published because she felt it dished too much dirt on their world in Yorkshire.Luckily, the book made it to the shelves, and – as this adaptation shows – it’s a real hidden gem of English storytelling.

Source: Why You NEED To Watch South Riding | South Riding | Drama Channel

And Then There Were None 2015 (TV Series) | UK Dec. 27, 2015


Ten strangers are invited to an isolated island by a mysterious host, and start to get killed one by one. Could one of them be the killer?
__ Agathy Christie

In three Acts (nights)

BBC / Acorn Productions

BBC Media Center on this film

Big Cast

Douglas Booth, Charles Dance, Maeve Dermody, Burn Gorman, Anna Maxwell Martin, Sam Neill, Miranda Richardson, Toby Stephens, Noah Taylor, Aidan Turner


And Then There Were None 2015 BBC Cast

The Frankenstein Chronicles – 6 parts

Releases Wednesday Nov 11, 2015 in the UK






Sean Bean (Game of Thrones) is taken on a terrifying journey in pursuit of a chilling and diabolical foe in ITV Encore’s The Frankenstein Chronicles.

Incorporating elements from the investigative and horror genres with an extraordinary hero at its centre, The Frankenstein Chronicles is set in Georgian London in 1827 and has been created by Benjamin Ross (The Young Poisoner’s Handbook) and writer Barry Langford (Torte Bluma).


The cast includes Anna Maxwell Martin (The Bletchley Circle), Charlie Creed-Miles (Ripper Street), Ed Stoppard (Cilla), Elliot Cowan (Da Vinci’s Demons), Hugh O’Conor (Chocolat), Joe Tucker (Bronson), Kate Dickie (Game of Thrones), Lalor Roddy (Hunger), Patrick Fitzsymons (Game of Thrones), Richie Campbell (Waterloo Road), Robbie Gee (Snatch), Ryan Sampson (Plebs), Samuel West (Mr Selfridge), Shaun Mason (Cilla), Steve Wilson (Game of Thrones), Steven Berkoff (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), Stuart Graham (The Fall), Tom Ward (Silent Witness) and Vanessa Kirby (About Time).


Episode 1: ‘World without God’

Wednesday 11 November 2015, 10pm

London 1827: River Thames at night – a smuggling operation is underway – suddenly, a river police launch is bearing down on the smugglers and a fight breaks out, followed by a furious chase to the shore.

John Marlott, a senior river police officer and veteran of the Battle of Waterloo, paces the shoreline of the Thames reviewing the aftermath.  A sharp police whistle draws his attention towards a small shape lying at the waters edge.  As he approaches he sees it is the body of a child, a young girl around 10 years of age.

Her body is covered in crude sutures, and is a horrifying sight.  He reaches down to touch the dead hand – but in a moment of terror, the hand grabs him back!

The dreadful corpse is brought to the urgent attention of the Home Secretary, Sir Robert Peel, who summons Marlott, and tells him that he wants him to undertake a private investigation. The leading surgeon at St Bart’s hospital in Smithfield, Sir William Chester, tells Marlott that the corpse was made up of seven or eight bodies stitched together.

Marlott is put to work within the offices of the Bow Street Runners, and recruits an optimistic young runner, Nightingale, to assist him. Marlott’s attention is then drawn towards a slum dwelling where criminal Billy Oates masterminds his gang of child criminals.  There he discovers a young girl Flora.

He also finds a painting on the wall.  It is “Little Girl Lost” by the artist William Blake – Marlott resolves to investigate further.


Episode 2: ‘Seeing Things’

Wednesday 18 November 2015, 10pm

Marlott visits the house of artist and printmaker William Blake who is on his deathbed, but he receives Marlott as a prophet of things to come.

Marlott confers with Nightingale who has been keeping watch on a public house, The Fortune of War, which is situated opposite St Barts hospital in Smithfield.  This is where the body snatchers gather, along with their “goods” which they sell at the hospital.  Marlott identifies one body snatcher, Pritty, as potentially helpful, and he and Nightingale set up a cunning ‘sting’ which brings him into their service.

Pritty is most indignant; body snatching is not illegal.  He considers himself to be a businessman and hotly denies anything to do with the sutured child – though he does know of a gang who might not shrink at darker acts.  Marlott charges him to arrange a meeting with them.

Marlott is visited by a Lady Hervey, a beautiful and fervent aristocrat – and a devoted Christian.  She passionately opposes the Anatomy Act because she believes it will lead to a world without God.  She begs Marlott to do whatever he can to stop the act being passed.

Marlott attends an anatomy lecture at St Barts, given by Garnet Chester the flamboyant cousin of Sir William, who performs a galvanizing experiment on a young corpse.  As the dead arm twitches to a sensational response from the students, the lecture is disrupted by anti Anatomy Act supporters.

Marlott follows them to a public debate being conducted by a powerful MP, Bentley Warburton, who attempts to rouse the poor about the horrors of public dissection and urges them to demonstrate about the coming Anatomy Act.

A curious eye meets Marlott’s – young journalist Boz is writing a story about the coming act and Marlott quizzes him. Boz sets his sights on unraveling the secrets behind Marlott’s quest.


Episode 3

Wednesday 25 November 2015, 10pm


Episode 4

Wednesday 2 December 2015, 10pm


Episode 5

Wednesday 9 December 2015, 10pm


Episode 6

Wednesday 16 December 2015, 10pm