BBC One has today announced a new TV drama based on the multiple murders carried out at Rillington Place by Halifax-born killer John Reginald Halliday Christie.
Rillington Place will focus on the true stories of murderer Christie, his wife Ethel, and their neighbour Timothy Evans, who all lived at the infamous address in Notting Hill, London.
Timothy Evans was sentenced to death by hanging for murdering his wife and infant daughter, but three years after his execution, Christie was found to be a serial killer who had murdered at least eight women, including his own wife.
Before his own execution, Christie, born in Northowram, confessed to murdering Mrs Evans and a later official inquiry found he had also murdered Evans’ daughter.
Told from each of their viewpoints, the series will explore the relationships and individual actions that led to this tragic miscarriage of justice, which contributed towards the abolition of capital punishment in Britain.
Commissioned by Charlotte Moore, controller of BBC TV Channels and iPlayer, and Polly Hill, controller of BBC Drama Commissioning, the executive producers are Phillippa Giles for Bandit Television, part of Endemol Shine Group, and Hilary Salmon for BBC Drama Production.
It is produced by Sharon Bloom (Silent Witness). Filming will begin at the end of March at the BBC Scotland drama studios in Dumbarton.
Phillippa Giles, managing director of Bandit, says: “This has been a passion piece involving close relationships with the surviving family members, which we have developed over several years - it will be hugely emotional to start filming this painful story and finally bring it to screen.”
Hilary Salmon, head of BBC Drama Production England, added: “We are thrilled to be bringing this iconic story to BBC One. Ed Whitmore and Tracey Malone have written three brilliant scripts which really crack open the mysteries and motivations of the Christie case.”
The events were turned into a film in 1971 which starred Richard Attenborough, John Hurt and Judy Geeson.