John Nettles as Jim Bergerac in his 1947 Triumph Roadster

Bergerac is returning, re-imagined by Toby Whithouse

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The show becomes a 6-part crime series for Drama and UKTV Play. 

Based on the exotic location of Channel Island of Jersey, Bergerac bestrode the BBC One schedules for a decade. With nine series and numerous Christmas specials, it was the Death in Paradise of its day.

Created by Robert Banks Stewart in 1981, detective sergeant Jim Bergerac was a recovering alcoholic posted home to the island after an accident. He worked for Jersey’s Bureau des Étrangers, part of the States of Jersey Police, attending investigations in a 1947 Triumph Roadster.

Bergerac - Jim Bergerac (John Nettles) & Susan Young (Louise Jameson)

The series was led by John Nettles, who later fronted Midsomer Murders, and the regular cast included Terance Alexander as Charlie Hungerford, an influential businessman and Bergerac’s former father-in-law Charlie Hungerford, and Sean Arnold as his put-upon boss Chief Inspector Barney Crozier.

Over the run of the series, Jim Bergerac also had a number of relationships, with characters played by Celia Imrie and Lousie Jameson, as well as a flirty nemesis in the “Ice Maiden” – Liza Goddard’s jewel thief Phillipa Vale. Additionally, there was an ongoing roster of guest stars, with the likes of Phillip Glenister, Prunella Scales and Bill Nighy all appearing.

Bergerac reimagined

The new Bergerac comes from Toby Whithouse, the writer of Being Human and The Game. His version implements a tweak, dropping the original’s crime of the week format in favour of a series-long investigation.

We’re told that the modern re-imagining will honour the iconic detective drama, but with a contemporary twist, as Bergerac is thrown into a knotty, high-stakes police investigation and challenged to his very core. He will be forced to confront his demons, while trying to save his family and career.

Bergerac comes from Blacklight TV, with executive producers Ben Bickerton, Philip Trethowan and Toby Whithouse. Brian Constantine is executive producer for Westward Studios, while Helen Perry, head of drama, will be executive producer for UKTV.

The writing team also includes Brian Fillis (Trust), Catherine Tregenna (Torchwood) and Polly Buckle (A Discovery of Witches).

Toby Whithouse said:

“It’s a rare honour to bring back a show as beloved and iconic as Bergerac. Our mission was always to respect the show’s history and legacy, while making it impactful and relevant for a modern-day audience. We’ll be bringing back other beloved supporting characters, as well as introducing new friends and foes. Just like his predecessor, our Bergerac is complex, driven, brilliant and flawed.”

BlackLight TV commented:

“We are thrilled to be working with UKTV to bring Jim Bergerac back to the small screen where he belongs. Toby Whithouse has created a propulsive contemporary crime story that delves into Bergerac’s rich and complex character, and will keep audiences guessing until the end. We’re sure it will delight old and new fans alike.”

Filming on the new Bergerac begins this summer, with locations including the Channel Island of Jersey. Casting will be announced in the coming months.

The series will appear on the free-to-air channel Drama and stream on UKTV Play in 2025.