The story of the life of Charmian Biggs, ex-wife of Ronald Biggs, is to be told in a five part ITV drama, Mrs Biggs.
Charmian, based in Australia, has acted as consultant to the production. She said: “If my story were to be dramatised I wanted it to be done as accurately as possible. It seemed to me this was an opportunity to convey the roller coaster of emotions involved, rather than just the bare facts.”
Written by Executive Producer Jeff Pope Mrs Biggs will chronicle Charmian’s life from the fateful moment that, as a teenager on a train, she first met and fell in love with the flirtatious and worldly Biggs.
“It will recount the story of their struggle to stay together in the face of fierce opposition from Charmian’s family – aghast at Biggs’ criminal record – and their idyllic life as the parents of young children before money worries forced Biggs to ask for a loan from an old friend to pay the deposit on a house they wanted to buy for their growing family. That friend was Bruce Reynolds, at that moment planning the most famous crimes in British history – the Great Train Robbery of August 1963.” ITV state.
Set on location in London, Surrey, Buckinghamshire, Paris, Adelaide, Melbourne and Rio de Janeiro, Mrs Biggs is a co-production with Melbourne based December Media for Seven Network in Australia and ITV Studios (the on-screen brand of Granada) in the UK. Jeff Pope has been developing the drama for four years.
Pope says, “Charmian’s is one of the great untold stories of the 20th Century, set against the backdrop of one of the greatest crimes of all times. But at the heart of it is a simple love story between Charmian and Ron.”
Filming will begin in Manchester in February 2012 before moving to Australia, and will continue for eleven weeks. Casting details will be made known prior to commencement of production.