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BBC Announce New Series 'The Shipman Files' On Chilling Crimes Of GP Harold Shipman

BBC Announce New Series 'The Shipman Files' On Chilling Crimes Of GP Harold Shipman

Heads up true crime addicts: the BBC has confirmed a brand-new docuseries on the infamous case of GP Harold Shipman - and it promises to be a gripping watch.

Coming to BBC Two in BBC Week 39, The Shipman Files is a three-part series by film-maker Chris Wilson.

The series will re-examine Shipman's shocking crimes with a fine-tooth comb.

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In 2000, the GP was found guilty of the murder of 15 people, with his victims thought to run into the hundreds.

The GP's victims are thought to run into the hundreds (Credit: PA)
The GP's victims are thought to run into the hundreds (Credit: PA)

Across the three episodes, Wilson meets with those closest to the case - both personally and professionally - and explores how attitudes to the elderly enabled a respected doctor to get away with the murder.

Much like BAFTA-winning series The Yorkshire Ripper Files, the series looks at the context of the Shipman story, focusing on the victims, rather than the killer.

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Using first-hand accounts from the victims' close friends and family, detectives, journalists, and fellow doctors - many of whom have never spoken about Shipman in public before - Wilson takes a fresh look at a murder story that spanned nearly thirty years, in which a seemingly ordinary GP became Britain's biggest serial killer.

In episode one, The Good Doctor, viewers will learn how the crimes of 'respected' GP Harold Shipman were first discovered.

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The series opens in Hyde, the small market town near Manchester where Shipman worked for over 20 years (Credit: PA)
The series opens in Hyde, the small market town near Manchester where Shipman worked for over 20 years (Credit: PA)

The series opens in Hyde, the small market town near Manchester where Shipman worked for over 20 years.

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The BBC description reads: "Shipman was one of the town's most popular GPs. But in 1998, doubts were raised over the validity of the will left by one of his deceased patients, whose death Shipman had certified as due to 'old age'.

"When the police exhumed her body, the subsequent post-mortem revealed that she had in fact been killed by a fatal dose of diamorphine - pure, medical-grade heroin.

"Suddenly what had been a curious complaint, became a murder inquiry, and the victim's GP, Harold Shipman, became the prime suspect.

"And looking back at the deaths of several more of his recently deceased patients, police inquiries quickly snowballed into a multiple murder investigation.

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"Shipman would eventually stand trial for the murder of 15 of his former patients from Hyde, all of them women, almost all of them elderly."

This promises to be a gripping and important watch - and will question whether the fact that Shipman targeted mainly elderly patients was the real reason that he was able to kill so many over such a long period of time.

The Shipman Files is a three-part series by film-maker Chris Wilson coming to BBC Two in BBC Week 39.

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock

Topics: TV and Film, True Crime, The Shipman Files, TV Entertainment, Murder

Mary-Jane Wiltsher

Mary-Jane Wiltsher is a freelance lifestyle and culture journalist. Elsewhere she writes for Stylist, Euronews, PHOENIX and What We Seee.