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Created by Geoff McQueen, The Bill began life in 1983 as the pilot
'Woodentop', which centered on PC Jimmy (Mark Wingett)
on his first day at fictional Sun Hill. Other characters included WPC June
Ackland, PC Taffy Morgan and Sgt Wilding.
The following year it returned, slightly changed and with McQueen's
title of The Bill. For its first three years it had three series of one
episodes, before it went into a half hour format in 1988, a format to stay
for ten years.
Many say that the show was at its best in the nineties (my favourite era was 1995-2000) with the familiar 'plodding feet credits', great detective storys and such characters as DI Frank Burnside, Insp Andrew Monroe, DC Liz Rawton, PC Vicky Hagen, DS Don Beech and many other greats.
Although the show went through some changes from 1998, including a revert back to hour episodes, and some delving into personal lives, the show changed beyond all recognition in 2002, when new producer Paul Marquess killed off much of the cast and took to a permanant serialised format. For many fans of the show, that was the end of The Bill...