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Dixon of Dock Green

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Dixon of Dock Green
Jack Warner as Constable George Dixon
Created byTed Willis
StarringJack Warner
Country of originUnited Kingdom
No. of series22
No. of episodes432 (399 missing) (list of episodes)
Running time30 minutes & 50 minutes
Original release
NetworkBBC Television Service/BBC1
Release9 July 1955 (1955-07-09) –
1 May 1976 (1976-05-01)

Dixon of Dock Green is a BBC police procedural television series about daily life at a fictional London police station, with the emphasis on petty crime, successfully controlled through common sense and human understanding. It ran from 1955 to 1976. The central character, George Dixon, first appeared in the film The Blue Lamp (1950). Dixon is a mature and sympathetic police constable, who was played by Jack Warner in all of the 432 episodes.

Dixon is the supposed embodiment of a typical "bobby" who would be familiar with the area in which he patrolled and its residents and often lived there himself. The series contrasted with later programmes such as Z-Cars, which more realistically reflected a more aggressive policing culture. It retained a faithful following throughout its run and was voted second-most popular programme on British television in 1961.

Character and name origins[edit]

The character of Police Constable George Dixon was based on an old-style British "bobby"—a slang term for policeman. Dixon first appeared in the Ealing Studios film The Blue Lamp (1950) as a typical bobby on the beat, an experienced constable working out of the Paddington Green police station and nearing retirement. The film was produced by Michael Balcon, who had been educated at George Dixon School in Birmingham, named after a local politician: this inspired the character name.

In The Blue Lamp, Dixon has a wife named Em (Gladys Henson). It is mentioned that their only son, Bert, was killed in the Second World War[1]—hence Dixon adopts a paternal aspect towards PC Andy Mitchell (Jimmy Hanley), a young policeman on his first day. Dixon comes across a raid and is shot. The rest of the film focuses on catching the perpetrator, a thug named Tom Riley (played by Dirk Bogarde). This gears up hugely once Dixon, who was said to be rallying in hospital, unexpectedly and suddenly dies, and Mitchell embarks on a perilous quest to find Tom Riley and bring him to justice.

Series conception[edit]

In 1955, the BBC Television Service was preparing to face competition from the forthcoming launch of the Independent Television network of commercial TV companies. The BBC therefore resurrected George Dixon for a new series featuring "everyday stories of a London policeman". The series came with an already familiar hero, played (as in the film) by a much-loved entertainer. The image of Jack Warner in police uniform with helmet made for an effective symbol of policing in Britain.

Despite being a drama, the series was produced in its early years by the BBC's light entertainment department. It was originally produced at the BBC's Riverside and Lime Grove studios. Episodes in series 1 to 7 ran to 30 minutes. From series 3 to 7 each series' final episode was extended to 45 minutes. From series 8 (1961) onwards all episodes were 45, then 50, minutes in duration.

Early series[edit]

There were some changes made before the first series aired. Paddington Green police station became the fictitious Dock Green police station in the East End of London. The character of PC Andy Mitchell became raw new constable PC Andy Crawford (Peter Byrne). According to the first series episode "Needle in a Haystack" Dixon is a widower, his wife having died in an air raid during the Second World War, though they had an only daughter, Mary (played by Billie Whitelaw in early episodes, later replaced by Jeanette Hutchinson). They lived in a small mid-terrace house on a busy road. Dixon would remain basically the same character as in the film; he could be relied on to be friendly with a lot of heart, a cornerstone of which was his honesty with which you knew he would be absolutely dependable and cool in a crisis. The actor's age meant Dixon was always an older bobby and the viewer was left to wonder why promotion hadn't come his way earlier.

Dixon's mentoring of Crawford was seen from Dixon of Dock Green's first series opener, "PC Crawford's first Pinch", broadcast on Saturday 9 July 1955. Dixon was portrayed as having a paternal and steadying influence on his colleagues and episodes often highlighted the family-like nature of life in the station as well as Dixon's actual family life at home. With his experience as a police constable frequently in evidence, he was often shown as being able to solve crimes and to keep the peace using his knowledge of human behaviour and of the Dock Green area. The initial run of six episodes ended on 13 August with the "London Pride" segment and was deemed a success; a further series of 13 episodes was commissioned to start broadcasting on 9 June 1956. Plots often focused on the role of the police in dealing with low-level, community-based crimes.

The last five episodes from series two are the earliest episodes of Dixon known to exist. One of those is "The Rotten Apple"[2] (broadcast 11 August 1956), a story which illustrates Dixon's belief in the honour of wearing the police uniform. A young constable, Tom Carr (Paul Eddington) appears to be enjoying a lifestyle that was more lavish than would be expected on his salary. His life begins to unravel after Dixon gets a visit from a local (legal) horse bookmaker, Harry Ross, to whom Carr owes a lot of money: Ross needs it back but knows Carr will lose his job if he makes his complaint official. With the force's reputation at stake, Dixon visits a nervous Carr in his flat changing into his uniform. Carr agrees to settle the debt, but as Dixon prepares to leave, accidentally knocks over a box, sending silverware clattering across the floor. The items, it transpires, are stolen, and the proceeds of a series of mysterious burglaries in the area. Dixon is affronted by this betrayal of trust, and orders the disgraced Carr to remove his uniform before he will escort him through the streets to Dock Green Station.

Series two ended on 1 September 1956 with the episode "Father-in-Law". Dixon is the father-in-law of the title, with Andy Crawford marrying his 23-year-old daughter, Mary. Dixon gets to sing a few songs at the wedding, but a small matter of a missing wallet emerges. At the end of the episode, with the mystery solved, Dixon wishes the viewers goodbye while the happy couple go off, to move to a flat in Chelmsford. An indicator of the series' success is that the start of series three was a mere four months away.

In the early days, a subtitle declared the series to be "Some Stories of a London Policeman", with each episode starting with Dixon speaking directly to the camera (breaking the "fourth wall"). He begins with a salute and the greeting "Good evening all",[3] which was changed to "Evening all" in the early 1970s, which has lived on in Britain as a jocular greeting. In similar fashion, episodes finished with a few words to camera from Dixon in the form of philosophy on the evils of crime, before saluting and wishing the viewers "Goodnight, all". Some felt Dixon to be a real person; at the end of a series, he would inform the audience that he was "going on holiday for a few weeks" so they shouldn't worry about not seeing him around.

As Ted Willis noted, in bringing Dixon to the small screen, he sought to portray "an ordinary, working-class policeman on the beat" with focus more on people, with the tendency to "concentrate on the smaller everyday type of crime, and put the emphasis on people rather than problems."[4] Willis talked in 1957 about seeking "to break away from the accepted formula for police and crime stories [...] The average policeman might go through a life-time of service without being involved in one murder case. His life is one of routine [...] Would [viewers] take simple, human stories about a simple ordinary copper and the people he meets?"[5] Change for the central character was slow, and it took until the opening episode of series 11 before George Dixon earned his stripes and was promoted to sergeant in "Facing the Music" (S11, E01, 19 September 1964).

Later series[edit]

The series evolved, though slowly, Ted Willis ensuring that the familiarity of the format remained its greatest strength for many years. The procedural detail formed a backbone on top of which the dramatic story played out, allowing the whole to make perfect sense. Often delivered at a genteel pace, this approach led to criticism from some quarters in the face of faster-paced (and sometimes more violent) contemporaries such as The Sweeney and even Z-Cars. Overall, the show ran for 22 series. Fans continued their support for the character with each new series. When Dixon was shot in one episode, the BBC received 4,000 letters of anxious inquiry and had it announced on television that Jack was all right.[6] Other characters were not forgotten; indeed, PC Andy Crawford – as well as being the main character's son-in-law – would go on to rise through the ranks of the CID to become chief inspector in Dock Green.

Dixon of Dock Green is sometimes unfavourably compared with later police procedural series (such as Z-Cars in the 1960s, The Sweeney in the 1970s and The Bill in the 1980s) which were seen as having a higher degree of realism due to their harder-hitting and more dynamic nature. However, the style of the programme did evolve over time, and some of the 1970s episodes which have been preserved demonstrate little of the homely nature for which the show was often criticised.[7] Plot lines in this period included the suspected suicide of a police officer, a gangland killing, and the shooting of a suspect by police officers using firearms. Police in the UK do not routinely carry firearms, and in the 1970s guns were rarely ever seen in their hands.

"Firearms Were Issued" (20 April 1974, one of the surviving episodes) examines that last point. A notorious gang of bank robbers has performed a raid locally, and Dock Green police are tipped off "from a reliable source" that they have retreated into a suburban house on their patch. Taking no chances, the go-ahead for a raid is given, and Sergeant George Dixon issues firearms to D.I. Andy Crawford and his team. With the gang attempting to flee under cover of darkness, shots are fired, including two from Crawford. At least one of these apparently hits and kills the target in the dark, the truth of which only comes to light later during the investigation that is quickly launched back at Dock Green police station. All officers are quizzed and re-quizzed by a senior external CID officer, going over the rights and wrongs of each step, looking for accountability. Everyone involved is left in no doubt as to the consequences of their actions, should they prove to be truthfully theirs. In retrospect, the process can be seen as primitive compared to the in-depth procedural investigations of the 21st century, but was rarely touched on in contemporary productions. The detail ensured that neither characters nor viewers could be completely sure about the outcome, ensuring gripping television drama.

By the final years of the series in the 1970s, Warner was getting elderly and looking increasingly implausible in uniform, mandatory retirement age being 55. This led to the formerly supportive police no longer regarding the character as a credible advertisement for the force. Warner had increasing difficulty moving about, which was helped slightly by a treatment involving bee stings. When it became known that the 1976 series of eight episodes[8] would be the last, some changes saw familiar faces including long-standing and popular cast member Peter Byrne leave, bringing in some new blood. The final series was shown in 1976 when Warner was 80 and the producers saw the opportunity to make some changes to the format. George Dixon was shown as retired from the police and being re-employed as a civilian as the collator, a temporary appointment which allowed him to train up whoever would be the next permanent collator. The introductory monologue and winding-up speech continued to be delivered by George Dixon, now out of uniform and behind his collator's desk. There was an increase in action whilst retaining detailed storytelling with Dixon's values at the core.

The last series of eight episodes ended on Saturday 1 May 1976 with "Reunion", with Dixon retiring completely from Dock Green. Lord Willis said, "I knew it had to come to an end sometime and I thought something was in the wind. They usually renew my Dock Green contract in February and it hasn't been renewed this time".[6] There were thoughts about continuing with the current cast using the revamped format, though any continuation would have been under a different title.[9] Any ideas and plans were never seriously followed up and after 21 years of Dixon of Dock Green, with its lead character out of the picture, the series came to a natural end.


Jack Warner[edit]

Warner's success as Dixon was well received by police forces. He was made an honorary member of both the Margate and Ramsgate police forces in the 1950s. Warner said of Dixon of Dock Green in 1976: "It has been a very good meal ticket for twenty-one years—although the taxman has never been far behind."[6] In his autobiography, Jack of All Trades,[10] Warner tells of a visit by Queen Elizabeth II to the studios where the series was made, where she commented "that she thought Dixon of Dock Green had become part of the British way of life".

The regard in which Warner's portrayal of a fictional policeman was held was seen at the actor's funeral at Margate Crematorium on 1 June 1981. Six Margate constables stood as guards-of-honour outside the chapel while delegations of officers attended (some coming from Wales and Newcastle upon Tyne), including 16 from the Metropolitan Police, led by Deputy Assistant Commissioner George Rushbrook and Commander John Atkins.[11]


Over the two decades-plus that Dixon was broadcast, it came in for increasing criticism, especially in its later years. The Guinness Book of Classic Television[12] described the programme as "an anachronism by the time it ended and a dangerous one at that". Ted Willis summarised the changing critical reception for Dixon in an article published in the TV Times in 1983: "In the first years, the critics were almost unanimous in their acclaim for Dock Green, hailing it as a breakthrough, praising its realism. But slowly, the view began to change. We were accused of being too cosy and the good word was reserved for series like No Hiding Place, Z-Cars and Softly, Softly. These, in turn, were superseded by the violent, all-action type of police drama like The Sweeney." He also stated that: "Eighty per cent of police work is ordinary and unsensational."[13]

Willis made some further observations. He found that, in fact and fiction, characters akin to Jack Regan in The Sweeney were to be underplayed by the police who sought to restore their place in modern communities. The surviving episodes (with an emphasis on the latter years of the programme) which saw DVD releases allowed Dixon to be seen less deserving of its reputation as a "cosy" stereotype, and more as a programme that tells the stories honestly and entertainingly. Willis noted that it would be harder for the police to build relationships with the public if they were continually to go around beating up every suspect.

Indeed, Alan Plater, who was a writer for Z-Cars early in his career, argued in 1976 (published in the police publication Context); "It is just as irresponsible to portray the police as always chasing murderers and big-time criminals as it is to show them as boy scouts like George Dixon. The Sweeney is ridiculous. It's James Cagney and the Sundance Kid rolled into one and given a British background."[14]


The police station featured in the original opening titles was the old Ealing police station, at 5 High Street, just north of Ealing Green.[15][16]

The opening and closing moments of each episode originally had PC Dixon delivering the famous lines "Evening, all" and "Goodnight, all", and a suitably moral homily, from outside Dock Green police station. However, most of these sequences were not filmed at Ealing police station—then still operational—but on the front steps of the (1902) Ealing Grammar School for Boys on Ealing Green. The BBC would attach a blue lamp next to the double doors, and the front oak-floored vestibule of the old school would warmly glow behind. During later series Dixon addressed the audience standing in front of a painted backdrop of a London skyline.

The 1973 episode "Eye Witness" shows a shot of a derelict warehouse complex with a sign identifying it as part of the Metropolitan & New Crane Wharves; these are located in Wapping Wall. This episode also shows the bascule bridge across the entrance to Shadwell Basin in Wapping. The warehouse is long gone; a supermarket now occupies the site.

At the end of the 1975 episode "Conspiracy", the exterior of Dock Green police station is represented by the Metropolitan Police's then recently built[17] Chiswick police station, on Chiswick High Road in west London.

Broadcast dates[edit]

(1955–1976, 22 series, 432 episodes)

Series From To Episode count
1 9 Jul. 1955 13 Aug. 1955 6
2 9 Jun. 1956 Sep. 1956 13
3 12 Jan. 1957 30 Mar. 1957 12
4 7 Sep. 1957 29 Mar. 1958 29
5 27 Sep. 1958 28 Mar. 1959 27
6 12 Sep. 1959 2 Apr. 1960 30
7 1 Oct. 1960 22 Apr. 1961 30
8 9 Sep. 1961 3 Mar. 1962 26
9 15 Sep. 1962 23 Mar. 1963 28
10 5 Oct. 1963 28 Mar. 1964 26
11 19 Sep. 1964 13 Mar. 1965 26
12 2 Oct. 1965 30 Apr. 1966 31
13 1 Oct. 1966 24 Dec. 1966 13
14 30 Sep. 1967 10 Feb. 1968 20
15 7 Sep. 1968 21 Dec. 1968 16
16 6 Sep. 1969 27 Dec. 1969 17
17 14 Nov. 1970 6 Mar. 1971 17
18 20 Nov. 1971 12 Feb. 1972 13
19 23 Sep. 1972 30 Dec. 1972 14
20 29 Dec. 1973 20 Apr. 1974 17
21 15 Feb. 1975 10 May 1975 13
22 13 Mar. 1976 1 May 1976 8


Main cast

Actor Portrayed Years active Series active Episode count
Jack Warner PC/Sgt George Dixon 1955–1976 1–22 432
Peter Byrne PC/DC/DS/DI Andy Crawford 1955–1975 1–21 424
Arthur Rigby Sgt Flint 1955–1965 1–11 253
Neil Wilson PC 'Tubb' Barrell 1955–1957, 1963 1–3, 9 32
Jeanette Hutchinson Mary Dixon/Crawford No. 2 1956–1964, 1969 2–10, 16 212
Moira Mannion WP Sgt Grace Millard 1956–1961 2–8 142
Robert Cawdron DI Bob Cherry 1956–1965 2–12 52
Graham Ashley PC/DC Tommy Hughes 1958–1962 4–8 78
Anthony Parker PC Bob Penney 1957–1959 4–5 56
Geoffrey Adams PC/DC 'Laudie' Lauderdale 1958–1972 5–18 298
David Webster Cadet Jamie MacPherson 1959–1962 6–9 92
Jocelyne Rhodes WPC Kay Shaw 1960–1964, 1967, 1971 7–11, 14, 18 52
Hilda Fenemore Jennie Wren 1960–1965 7–12 39
Nicholas Donnelly PC/Sgt Johnny Wills 1961–1976 8–22 200
Anne Ridler WP Sgt Chris Freeman 1962–1964 9–11 55
John Hughes PC John Jones 1962–1964 9–10 50
Jan Miller WPC Alex Johns 1962–1964 9–10 39
Peter Thornton PC Burton 1964–1966, 1968 10–13, 15 42
Robert Arnold PC/DC Swain 1964–1970 11–17 132
Anne Carroll WPC Shirley Palmer 1964–1966 11–13 49
Duncan Lamont Sgt Bob Cooper 1965–1966, 1968 12, 15 32
Joe Dunlop DC Pearson 1966–1968 13–15 37
Michael Osborne PC David Newton 1970–1972 17–19 42

Other cast members

Actor Portrayed Years active Series active Episode count
Billie Whitelaw Mary Dixon No. 1 1955 1 6
Dorothy Casey Nancy Murphy 1955–1963 1, 4–9 28
Harold Scott Duffy Clayton 1956–1962 2, 4–9 18
Anthony Sagar DS Brownrigg 1956–1958 2–4 7
David Lyn PC Jenkins 1957 3 12
Robert Raglan Supt ? 1959–1962, 1964, 1966 6–10, 13 13
Michael Nightingale DC Jack Cotton 1961–1962 8 24
Ruth Lodge WP Sgt "Scotty" Scott 1961–1962 8 17
Max Latimer PC "Tiny" Bush 1961–1962 8–9 17
Janet Moss WPC "Barney" Barnes 1961–1962 9 14
Christopher Gilmore PC Clyde 1962–1963 9 25
Paul Elliott Cadet Michael Bonnet 1963–1964 10 26
Anna Dawson Mary Crawford No. 3 1964–1966 11–12 23
Geoffrey Kenion PC Roberts 1964–1965 11 23
Zeph Gladstone WPC Liz Harris 1964–1965 11 20
Jeanne Mockford Miss Lucas 1964–1965 11 19
Ronald Bridges PC Bryant 1965–1966 11–13 26
Jean Dallas WPC Betty Williams 1965–1966 12–13 25
Pamela Buchner WDC Ann Foster 1967–1968 14 15
Andrew Bradford PC Turner 1967–1968 14 19
Jenny Logan WPC Sally Reed 1968–1969 15–16 15
Kenneth Watson DI/DCI Scott 1972–1973 19–20 14
Derek Anders DC Webb 1972 19 14
Gregory de Polnay DS Mike Brewer 1974–1975 20–21 29
Jacqueline Stanbury WPC Hawkins 1974 20 5
Stephen Marsh PC Harry Dunne 1975–1976 21–22 13
Richard Heffer DS Alan Bruton 1976 22 8
Ben Howard DC Len Clayton 1976 22 8

Archive status[edit]

Most of the original 432 episodes of Dixon of Dock Green are still missing due both to the programme being broadcast live and not recorded in the early days, and the BBC's later policy of reusing video tapes for new programmes. Only 33 episodes still exist in full and extracts exist for a further 19. In February 2024 it was announced that the previously missing Series 5 episode "Duffy Calls the Tune" was recovered.[18]

The existing episodes are as follows:

Series 2[edit]

  • "Postman's Knock" (4 August 1956)
  • "The Rotten Apple" (11 August 1956)
  • "The Roaring Boy" (18 August 1956)
  • "Pound of Flesh" (25 August 1956)
  • "Father in Law" (1 September 1956)

Series 5[edit]

  • "Duffy Calls the Tune" (21 March 1959)

Series 7[edit]

  • "The Hot Seat" (15 October 1960)

Series 9[edit]

  • "A Home of One's Own" (24 November 1962)
  • "Green Wedding" (5 January 1963)
  • "Before the Ball" (16 March 1963)

Series 11[edit]

  • "A Scrap of Paint" (24 October 1964)

Series 14[edit]

  • "The Team" (25 November 1967)

Series 17[edit]

  • "Waste Land" (14 November 1970)

Series 18[edit]

  • "Jig-Saw" (18 November 1971)
  • "Molenzicht" (1 January 1972)

Series 20[edit]

  • "Eye Witness" (29 December 1973)
  • "Harry's Back" (12 January 1974)
  • "Sounds" (13 April 1974)
  • "Firearms Were Issued" (20 April 1974)

Series 21[edit]

  • "Target" (15 February 1975)
  • "Seven for a Secret – Never to be Told" (22 February 1975)
  • "Baubles, Bangles and Beads" (15 March 1975)
  • "Looters Ltd" (29 March 1975)
  • "A Slight Case of Love" (19 April 1975)
  • "Conspiracy" (10 May 1975)

Series 22[edit]

This is the only series where all episodes - eight in all (see under "DVD releases" below for details) - survive intact in the archive.

An out-take sequence also exists from "It's a Gift" (Series 21, Episode 3 – 1 March 1975) involving two criminals in which one of them, played by Victor Maddern, finds himself unable to deliver correctly the required line "It's down at Dock Green nick!" – referring to a stolen necklace. After two failed attempts, in which the line is spoken both as "It's down at Dock Green dick!" and "It's down at Dick Green dock!", Maddern asks the unseen director (Vere Lorrimer) "Couldn't I just say 'It's down at the nick'?"


The British music hall song "Maybe It's Because I'm a Londoner" was used originally as the theme song. It was composed by Hubert Gregg but was replaced with an instrumental theme composed by Jeff Darnell[19] This was later released as a single under the name "An Ordinary Copper". Darnell was Warner's original piano act partner in the 1940s.[20] The harmonica was played by Tommy Reilly.[21] Original incidental music for the early (1950s) series was written by Alan Yates (1912–1991).

DVD release[edit]

A collection of six of the seven surviving colour episodes across series 17-to-20 (the omitted one being Series 18, Episode 7, Molenzicht) was released by Acorn Media UK on DVD in July 2012, with the following episodes;

  • 1. Waste Land (Series 17, Episode 1 – 14/11/70)
  • 2. Jig-Saw (Series 18, Episode 1 – 20/11/71)
  • 3. Eye Witness (Series 20, Episode 1 – 29/12/73)
  • 4. Harry's Back (Series 20, Episode 3 – 12/01/74)
  • 5. Sounds (Series 20, Episode 16 – 13/04/74)
  • 6. Firearms Were Issued (Series 20, Episode 17 – 20/04/74)

A second collection of six episodes, comprising the entire penultimate 21st series, was released by Acorn Media UK on DVD in July 2013, with the following episodes:[22]

  • 1. Target (Series 21, Episode 1 – 15/02/75)
  • 2. Seven for a Secret – Never To Be Told (Series 21, Episode 2 – 22/02/75)
  • 3. Baubles, Bangles & Beads (Series 21, Episode 5 – 15/03/75)
  • 4. Looters Ltd (Series 21, Episode 7 – 29/03/75)
  • 5. A Slight Case of Love (Series 21, Episode 10 – 19/04/75)
  • 6. Conspiracy (Series 21, Episode 13 – 10/05/75)

A third collection of eight episodes, comprising the entire final 22nd series, was released by Acorn Media UK on DVD in March 2015, with the following episodes:

  • 1. Domino (Series 22, Episode 1 – 13/03/76)
  • 2. The Job (Series 22, Episode 2 – 20/03/76)
  • 3. Vagrant (Series 22, Episode 3 – 27/03/76)
  • 4. Everybody's Business (Series 22, Episode 4 – 03/04/76)
  • 5. Alice (Series 22, Episode 5 – 10/04/76)
  • 6. Jackpot (Series 22, Episode 6 – 17/04/76)
  • 7. Legacy (Series 22, Episode 7 – 24/04/76)
  • 8. Reunion (Series 22, Episode 8 – 01/05/76)

This release also includes the following special features:-

  • Picture gallery
  • Audio Commentary on "Domino" with actor Stephen Marsh [P.C. Harry Dunne]
  • Audio Commentary on "Legacy" with actor Ben Howard [D.C. Len Clayton]
  • Audio Commentary on "Alice" with director Michael E. Briant
  • The Final Cases: Documentary on the making of this last series, with actors Nicholas Donnelly [Sgt. Johnny Wills], Richard Heffer [D.S. Alan Bruton], Stephen Marsh [P.C. Harry Dunne], Gregory de Polnay [D.S. Mike Brewer] and production assistant Vivienne Cozens.
  • Good Evening All: A tribute to Jack Warner, with Nicholas Donnelly, Richard Heffer, Stephen Marsh, Gregory de Polnay and Vivenne Cozens.
  • Personnel Files: Extended Interviews with Nicholas Donnelly, Richard Heffer and Gregory de Polnay.


Remake for BBC Radio[edit]

In 2005, the series was revived for BBC Radio, adapted by Sue Rodwell, with David Calder as George Dixon, David Tennant as Andy Crawford, and Charlie Brooks as Mary Dixon:

  • 1. London Pride
  • 2. Needle in a Haystack
  • 3. Crawford's First Pinch
  • 4. Dixie
  • 5. Rock, Roll and Rattle
  • 6. Roaring Boy

A second series followed in 2006, with Hamish Clark replacing Tennant owing to the latter's Doctor Who recording commitments:

  • 1. Little Boy Blue
  • 2. The Gentle Scratcher
  • 3. The Captain (based on the episode "The Rotten Apple")
  • 4. Andy Steps Up
  • 5. Give a Dog a Good Name
  • 6. The Key of the Nick

Dixon in other shows[edit]

Christmas Night With The Stars was a BBC television show broadcast each Christmas night from 1958 to 1972 (with the exception of 1961, 1965 and 1966). The show featured specially made short seasonal editions (typically about 10 minutes long) of the previous year's most successful BBC sitcoms and light entertainment programmes. Dixon of Dock Green contributed short editions in the 1959, 1962, and 1963 shows, and featured some of the main members of the Dixon cast.Christmas Night with the Stars

The Black and Blue Lamp by Arthur Ellis was screened in the BBC2 Screenplay series of drama plays on 7 September 1988. In the play – which begins with a montage of key scenes from The Blue Lamp – Tom Riley (Sean Chapman) and PC Hughes (Karl Johnson) are projected forwards into a violent parody of 1980s police procedurals called The Filth. Once there, they meet the corrupt Superintendent Cherry (Kenneth Cranham) and Superintendent Hammond (John Woodvine) and discover just how much policing has changed between the two periods.

One of Dixon's closing monologues from Dixon of Dock Green was recycled for the final scene of Ashes to Ashes in 2010. As in The Black and Blue Lamp, characters in Ashes to Ashes and its predecessor, Life on Mars, were seemingly sent into different eras of policing. Moreover, Dixon's resurrection for Dixon of Dock Green, after he was killed in The Blue Lamp and the fact that he apparently continued to serve as a police officer well past the usual retirement age find a parallel in the stories of the principal characters in Life on Mars and Ashes to Ashes, being explained in the final episode.[24]

The ending credits to the show were seen in the 2016 animated film Ethel & Ernest.


  1. ^ Although it is never mentioned on-screen in The Blue Lamp, Bert could possibly be the young sailor in uniform whose photograph can be seen on the Dixons' mantlepiece.
  2. ^ "Dixon of Dock Green: Season 2, Episode 10: The Rotten Apple (11 August 1956)". IMDb.com. Retrieved 31 October 2015.
  3. ^ "Dixon of Dock Green". Whirligig-tv.co.uk. Retrieved 6 August 2010.
  4. ^ Ted Willis, "Dock Green through the Years", Radio Times, 17 September 1964, p. 7
  5. ^ 7.Ted Willis, 'George Dixon of Dock Green is Back', Radio Times, 4 January 1957, p. 5
  6. ^ a b c Daily Mirror, 14 April 1976
  7. ^ Dowling, Tim (19 July 2012). "Your next box set: Dixon of Dock Green". The Guardian.
  8. ^ "Dixon of Dock Green Collection 3 [DVD]: Amazon.co.uk: Jack Warner: DVD & Blu-ray". Amazon.co.uk. 11 May 2015. Retrieved 31 October 2015.
  9. ^ Interviews with various cast members, "Dixon of Dock Green – Collection three"
  10. ^ Jack Warner's autobiography (published 21 April 1975), p. 84, ISBN 978-0491019521
  11. ^ "Buckinghamshire Constabulary—Dixon of Dock Green". Mkheritage.co.uk. Retrieved 31 October 2015.
  12. ^ The Guinness Book of Classic British TV: Amazon.co.uk: Paul Cornell, Martin Day, Keith Topping: 9780851126289: Books. ASIN 0851126286.
  13. ^ Ted Willis, "Is PC Dixon on the way back?", TV Times, 26 November – 2 December 1983, p. 16
  14. ^ Alan Plater, in "T.V. Gives False Impression of Police Work – But I Don't", Context, August 1976, p. 5.
  15. ^ Ealing and Brentford: Public services, A History of the County of Middlesex: Volume 7: Acton, Chiswick, Ealing and Brentford, West Twyford, Willesden (1982), pp. 147–149. Date accessed: 10 May 2008.
  16. ^ McEwan, Kate (1983). Ealing Walkabout: journeys into the history of a London borough. Warrington: Nick Wheatly Associates. p. 45. ISBN 0-9508895-0-4.
  17. ^ Collins, John. "A Brief History of the Metropolitan Police in Brentford and Chiswick". Retrieved 26 July 2013.
  18. ^ "Talking Pictures TV to air newly discovered Dixon of Dock Green Episode". 26 February 2024.
  19. ^ Baron, Alexander. "Digital Journal". David Rathband – The Spirit of the Blue Lamp. Digital Journal. Retrieved 1 March 2012.
  20. ^ Meet the Huggetts, A & M Records
  21. ^ Jack Warner With Tommy Reilly - Dixon Of Dock Green (An Ordinary Copper) (1961), 45Cat
  22. ^ "Dixon of Dock Green Collection Two". Archived from the original on 28 April 2013. Retrieved 10 May 2013.
  23. ^ "Dixon Of Dock Green – Collection Three (S3) on DVD: FREE UK DELIVERY". Acorndvd.com. Retrieved 31 October 2015.
  24. ^ Simon Brew (21 May 2010). "The significance of the final shot of Ashes to Ashes". Den of Geek. Dennis Publishing. Retrieved 25 May 2010.

External links[edit]