James Norton (Happy Valley) leads the cast of ITV’s new new six-part drama Grantchester this autumn as Sidney Chambers, alongside Robson Green (Wire In The Blood) as Police Inspector, Geordie Keating.
Set in 1953 in the beautiful county of Cambridgeshire, Sidney’s unlikely partnership with gruff, down to earth Geordie is central to Grantchester.
Geordie’s methodical approach to policing complements Sidney’s more intuitive techniques of coaxing information from witnesses and suspects. They are partners in crime and forge a true friendship as each offers a different insight into the crimes they begin to unravel.
Morven Christie (Twenty Twelve) plays beautiful heiress Amanda Kendall, whose love for Sidney, although reciprocated, doesn’t have a future, as her father wants her to marry an aristocratic beau.
Tessa Peake-Jones (Only Fools and Horses) plays Sidney’s housekeeper, the indomitable Mrs Maguire who keeps him in check and does her best to keep his chaotic vicarage presentable and respectable. He also has gorgeous black Labrador puppy, Dickens, for company.
Kacey Ainsworth (EastEnders) plays Geordie’s loving wife Cathy. Cathy is a busy mother of three with a fourth child on the way.
Sidney’s moustachioed curate, Leonard Finch, is played by Al Weaver (Southcliffe), whilst pale, interesting and stunning widow, Hildegard Staunton, is played by German actress Pheline Roggan.
Monday 6 October 2014, 9pm
It’s 1953, and just outside the Cambridgeshire village of Grantchester, local vicar Sidney Chambers (James Norton) has lost track of time, having spent a glorious morning with his fun loving friend, and the woman with whom he is secretly in love, Amanda Kendall (Morvern Christie). Racing to church, Sidney arrives just in time to minister at the funeral of a local solicitor – although his poor time-keeping earns the disapproval of his punctilious housekeeper Mrs Maguire (Tessa Peake-Jones).
With the death a suicide, Sidney does his best to comfort young German widow Hildegard Staunton (Pheline Roggan), but is soon called away from his normal duties when the glamorous Pamela Morton (Rachel Shelley) asks to draw Sidney into her confidence. She reveals that she was having an affair with the late solicitor – and that far from being a suicide, she has reasons to believe that he was in fact murdered.
With Pamela unable to go to the police, she asks Sidney if he would be able to look into the matter for her – after all, people confide in vicars, don’t they? However, Sidney’s investigation quickly draws him to the attention of grumpy local DI Geordie Keating (Robson Green), who doesn’t really appreciate the clergyman sticking his nose into things he doesn’t understand. But Sidney isn’t to be shaken off too easily – particularly when he begins to uncover evidence that the suicide was staged.
However, whilst Sidney is focused on getting to the bottom of the alleged murder, his own world is shaken apart when he receives news that Amanda has got engaged – it seems that Sidney has missed his moment. With his heart breaking, and his theory about the murder seemingly coming up short, will Sidney be able to work out who killed the solicitor before the killer strikes again?
Monday 13 October 2014, 9pm
Sidney tries and fails to resist when he is pressured by his sister Jen (Fiona Button) into attending Amanda’s engagement dinner – he hates making small talk with the upper classes. Not only that, but he knows that Amanda’s rich and irritatingly handsome fiancée Guy (Tom Austen) will be in attendance.
As Sidney tries to cope with the evening by sinking one too many drinks, old tensions run high between the school friends of Amanda and Jen. But the evening really erupts when Amanda’s engagement ring goes missing – and Jen’s boyfriend Johnny (Ukweli Roach) is accused of stealing it.
With tensions still simmering, Sidney is called by Geordie in the early morning with terrible news – one of the guests at the dinner party has been found dead, and this time he’s certain it’s murder. With everyone in shock, Sidney carefully assists Geordie in
interviewing everyone about the night before – and it becomes clear that the fingers of suspicion are pointing firmly at Johnny. And when evidence comes to light that seems to confirm Johnny as the killer, it would seem that it’s cased closed for Geordie and Sidney.
However, with Sidney believing that Johnny is innocent, he begins to work on a different theory – and also finds that he will need the help of nervous new curate Leonard (Al Weaver) to unmask the true killer. Not only that, but he will also need to find the one thing he would rather stayed lost – Amanda’s missing engagement ring.
Monday 20 October 2014, 9pm
After Guy and Amanda ask Sidney to perform their wedding ceremony, the heartbroken vicar takes solace in a bottle. When Mrs Maguire points out he is failing in his duties to his parish, Sidney vows to take a break from drinking and assisting in criminal investigations.
Concentrating on his clerical duties, he helps Leonard as he moves into the vicarage, and agrees to help parishioner Isabel (Lucy Black) as she prepares for her upcoming wedding to new man in town, Arthur (Kieran O’Brien). But Isabel’s stubborn mother, Daisy (Jean Marsh), is proving to be a big impediment to their wedding – mostly because she believes that Arthur is out to kill her.
Sidney just wants to see the best in people, but when Daisy is found dead, Mrs Maguire, believing Arthur to be a ‘rotten apple’, goes behind his back and calls in Geordie to investigate. Sidney finds himself reluctantly being dragged into the investigation. Whilst Daisy’s death seems to be due to natural causes, it seems all the more suspicious that Arthur and Isabel are pushing for a fast cremation of the body. What is it that they don’t want to be discovered?
Things take a darker turn when Daisy’s sister Gladys (Isla Blair) is also found dead – and this time, from a suspected poisoning. With secrets about Arthur’s past beginning to come to light, and with a mysterious stranger stalking the town, it’s up to Sidney to try and work out whether or not these deaths are connected, and in so doing, potentially stop any further killings. And all this, without even being able to go down to the pub for a pint.
Monday 27 October 2014, 9pm
Sidney is awoken in the early hours by a fire in the village. Putting his own life on the line, Sidney drags the dazed Marion Taylor (Flora Montgomery) free from the burning house, much to the relief of her husband Dominic (Lee Williams). But there’s a mystery around the fire – was it really an accident, or was it started deliberately? And why was Marion so reluctant to leave the house? Normally Sidney would turn to Geordie when there was a mystery like this to be solved, but Sidney finds that the detective is far from his normal self – distracted and detached.
When Dominic Taylor is found stabbed, Sidney is surprised to find that it’s Geordie’s junior, Atkins (Joe Claflin), that will be heading up the case – and he’s not exactly a fan of interfering vicars. When Sidney attempts to take his concerns to Geordie, he makes an awful discovery – Geordie’s baby son is gravely ill. Rather than take some time off however, Geordie relishes the opportunity to take his mind off things with a good investigation – but Sidney worries that Geordie’s increasingly erratic behaviour means that his thoughts are actually far from the job in hand.
Sidney’s life is further complicated when glamorous widow Hildegard Staunton returns to Cambridge – and Sidney realises that his feelings for her might be growing. Leonard’s personal life is also complicated when the murder investigation takes a turn that hits close to home for the young curate.
When Sidney finds himself at loggerheads with his best friend Geordie, he makes an error of judgment that has serious repercussions for some of his parishioners. Will he be able to make amends for what he has done? And will his falling out with Geordie lead to the wrong man being convicted for murder?
Monday 3 November 2014, 9pm
When Sidney takes Geordie on a night out to Johnny Johnson’s London jazz club, they’re meant to be leaving their worries in Grantchester. But when Amanda turns up unexpectedly, the night takes a rather different turn. Determined not to let his true feelings show, Sidney and Amanda settle into a hazy night of dancing – but their reverie is interrupted by a scream from backstage – and Geordie and Sidney learn that if you’re a policeman or a vicar, you’re never truly off duty.
Claudette (Natasha Cottriall), Johnny’s sister has been murdered, devastating everyone close to her. Archie (Peter Egan), the owner of the club and Johnny and Claudette’s father, ropes in his friend, DCI Jacob Williams (Nick Sidi) to crack the case.
Geordie immediately sniffs out that the London copper is as bent as a nine bob note, whilst Sidney makes a huge discovery about Claudette that she kept from all but those closest to her. As all the leads seem to come back to Archie’s violent past, recriminations within the family begin to play out – could Claudette’s murder have been avoided if Archie chose to live his life differently?
Things are complicated further by the arrival of Gloria Dee (Camilla Marie Beeput), an enigmatic jazz singer who threatens to cause chaos in the life of anyone who draws too close.
When Sidney’s feelings for Amanda are exposed, the fallout leads the vicar to make a terrible decision that he instantly regrets. Will he chose to return to Grantchester to confess all to those he loves? And will he and Geordie be able to unravel the truth about Archie’s dark past before Claudette’s killer strikes again?
Monday 10 November 2014, 9pm
With Amanda and Guy’s wedding fast approaching, and his betrayal of Hildegard still fresh in his mind, Sidney is thrown deep into crisis. With even those closest to Sidney struggling to get through to him, is he truly cut out for life as the vicar of Grantchester? The murder of a local policeman doesn’t help matters, as Sidney allows himself to be sucked back into another investigation rather than putting his house in order. However, tragedy strikes as Geordie and Sidney close in on the killer.
With Geordie’s life hanging in the balance, and the killer still on the loose, the police close ranks, cutting Sidney out of the investigation. Believing that the police are on the wrong track, Sidney asks Mrs Maguire and Leonard if they will undertake a daring mission to help him gather much needed information about the killer. And as Sidney closes in on the man who shot Geordie, it becomes clear that the killer’s motives stretch back many years, to events that took place in the Second World War.
As Sidney does his best to comfort Geordie’s distraught wife Cathy (Kacey Ainsworth), he wrestles with his own demons about the war, and everything seems to be hurtling out of control for the young vicar. With no Amanda to turn to, and with his guilt over Hildegard running rampant, will Sidney be able to keep his head for long enough to track down the killer? Will his best friend survive the day? And in the midst of it all, will Sidney be able to admit his true feelings to Amanda before her wedding to Guy?
Watch the trailer…
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