‘This is England’ creator adapting 18th century Yorkshire true story for BBC

Acclaimed filmmaker Shane Meadows is working on his first ever BBC drama.

The English director and screenwriter is best known for the 1980s-set film This is England and its three follow-up series.

The Gallows Pole will be based on Benjamin Myers’ novel, set in the moorland hills of 18th century Yorkshire.

The series tells the remarkable true story of the rise and fall of the Cragg Vale Coiners.

The official synopsis reads: “Set against the backdrop of the coming industrial revolution in eighteenth century Yorkshire, the compelling drama follows the enigmatic David Hartley, as he assembles a gang of weavers and land-workers to embark upon a revolutionary criminal enterprise that will capsize the economy and become the biggest fraud in British history.”

Shane Meadows commented: “The Gallows Pole is an incredible true story, little known outside of Yorkshire, about a group of very naughty men and women who started clipping and counterfeiting coins out in the Moors, as a way to keep themselves and their community alive.

“I’ve never made a period drama before so I’m absolutely buzzing, and to be doing it with Piers at the BBC, his incredible team, and Element Pictures is nothing short of an honour.”

Piers Wenger, BBC Director of Drama, said as he announced the BBC’s upcoming drama slate: “I am incredibly proud of drama on the BBC and how its popularity, range and ambition is being recognised by viewers and critics alike.”

He added: “We pride ourselves on the creative contribution we make and the value we offer to audiences. We will continue to build on the momentum of recent years to ensure that the BBC is and continues to be the home of the very best of British drama.”

The Gallows Pole is expected to premiere on BBC One in the UK in 2022.

For a sneak peek at all the British period drama series coming up, take a look at our epic 2021 preview.

This is England is available to watch on Amazon Prime Video.