The Ruth Ellis Files: A Very British Crime Story

9pm, BBC Four
Episode 2: Tuesday 14th March
Editor Duncan Buchanan

In this investigative three-part series for BBC Four, filmmaker Gillian Pachter re-examines the Ruth Ellis case.

In April 1955 Ruth Ellis shot her lover David Blakely dead. It’s a case that shocked the nation and it still fascinates today. It has its place in ushering in the defence of diminished responsibility and the eventual abolishment of capital punishment. We all think we know the story, but why, when it was seemingly such an open and shut case, does it still divide opinion on whether Ruth Ellis got the justice she deserved? Film-maker Gillian Pachter wants to find out. The result is a fresh investigation with fascinating true-crime twists and turns that also shines a unique light on attitudes to class, gender and sex in 1950s London.

Duncan Buchanan edited Episode 2 in which Gillian turns her attention to Ruth’s trial which took just a day and a half. She starts with a tape-recorded conversation from the 1980s between Ruth’s son Andre and the barrister who led the prosecution. Andre expresses doubts about his mother’s trial, calling into question her state of mind and whether she was a cold-blooded killer.

Episode 1 has had some fantastic reviews so we cant wait to watch the second Ep tonight at 9pm.

Episode 1 can be seen here:

Episode 2 edited by Duncan Buchanan is on tonight: Tues 14th March at 9pm and the final episode will be on tomorrow at 9pm.