British Prime Minister Winston Churchill suffers from a stroke in the summer of 1953 that's kept a secret from the rest of the world.

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(based on the novel "The Churchill Secret - KBO" by), (screenplay)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Millie Appleyard
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Rosie Hopper
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De Gasperi
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Christopher Soames
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Lord Moran
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Sgt Murray
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Lord Camrose
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Diana Churchill
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Storyline

In June 1953, two years after he was re-elected as Prime Minister Winston Churchill collapses following a dinner party at Downing Street. Diagnosed by his doctor Lord Moran as having a stroke there are fears that he may not survive and he is taken to his country home Chartwell. Publicly he is said to be suffering from exhaustion and the newspaper owners consent to printing the deception. As his children arrive to watch over him they feud over son Randolph's drinking and daughter Sarah's less than illustrious film career whilst Winston's wife Clemmie reflects on the loss of another daughter who died in infancy. The Cabinet is informed of events as Moran brings in plain-spoken Yorkshire nurse Millie Appleyard to look after the great man. With her help and his wife's devotion Churchill survives to address the Conservative party conference later in the year, before retiring as premier two years later, the country as a whole being unaware all along of Churchill's secret. Written by don @ minifie-1

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28 February 2016 (UK)  »

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Michael Gambon and Romola Garai portrayed the roles of father and daughter in the 2009 Mini-Series Emma See more »

Goofs

Near the end Churchill gives the nurse a signed copy of one of his books. The book, "A history of English speaking peoples, Vol. 2" was not published until several years later. See more »

Connections

Featured in Too Much TV: Episode #1.1 (2016) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Historical based TV drama on a little known part of Winston Churchill's life
11 March 2016 | by (London,United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

This 100 minute long film was made for UK TV and stars the incomparable Michael Gambon as Churchill. It is 1953 and he has just suffered a second stroke. Proving that spin was alive and well even back then, the powers that be and the Tory party wanted to keep the truth hidden. So he is whisked off to his ancestral home to recover.

The film is based around the nurse who was drafted in to care for him – this is Ramola Garai ('Suffragette') who plays Millie Appleyard and she is both convincing and a lovely on screen presence. The drama unfolds around the International situation and the warming up of 'the Cold War' and domestic policies as well as the far too cosy a relationship Churchill had with the Newspaper moguls.

So is it any good? Well with a coterie of great actors it was always hard to make this fail. Lindsay Duncan plays Clemmie Churchill and is – as always- excellent. The massively talented Bill Patterson plays Lord Moran and we have 'Ripper Street's own Mathew Macfadyen playing Randolph Churchill at his swaggering best. The drama was never going to be edge of seat stuff but the performances are all solid enough to hold your attention. I actually really enjoyed it even though it could have been better, but I was hooked for the full run – recommended.


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