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McGough was cast as secret service detective Edwin Woodhall in the Alan Bleasdale-written drama The Monocled Mutineer and appeared in Brookside as Charlie Dawson who at first appeared to be a friend of Heather Haversham's then husband but turned out to be a drug dealer. He appeared as Sergeant Calder, a member of the British Army's bomb disposal squad, in the 1984 Doctor Who story Resurrection of the Daleks. McGough is also famous for playing the character of "Arnie" in a classic episode of Only Fools and Horses - 'Chain Gang'. However he is very well known to television viewers as Dr. Malcolm Nicholson in Bad Girls, a role he played from 2000 to 2001 and again from 2003 to 2005. In 2006, he guest-starred in the audio drama Sapphire and Steel: Perfect Day. McGough also featured in an episode of the popular British mystery series Jonathan Creek. In series 1, episode 3 "The Reconstituted Corpse" he plays (in true Jonathan Creek style) the part of Zola Zbzewski's agent, stalker and murder accomplice.