NEW Series of “Garrow’s Law” about to be aired!

We have known for some time that the second series of the BBC’s excellent drama Garrow’s Law was in in the pipeline, and now we know when it will begin being aired: Sunday 14 November 2010. We will be making a note to watch (or catch up via the iPlayer). The following is from the press-release:

Pioneering 18th-century barrister William Garrow revisits the Old Bailey to champion the rights of prisoners against the power of the State, as BBC One‘s acclaimed drama Garrow’s Law returns for a second series.

A year has passed since viewers last saw him and, in this time, Garrow’s reputation for pioneering advocacy has intensified – but so too has his opposition to the legal and political establishment.

A stellar cast returns for the second series of RTS (Royal Television Society) award-winning Garrow’s Law, lead by Andrew Buchan (Cranford, Party Animals), Alun Armstrong (New tricks, Little Dorrit), Lyndsey Marshal (Being Human, Rome), Aidan McArdle (Beautiful People, Jane Eyre) and Rupert Graves (Single Father, God On Trial).

Themes of slavery, homosexuality, mistreatment of disabled naval veterans and women as property are explored in this new series. And Garrow finds himself in the dock at Westminster Hall as the series comes to a thrilling climax.

Read the full press release


2 Replies to “NEW Series of “Garrow’s Law” about to be aired!”

  1. I was struck by the dichotomy between media representations and real life (2nd BBC series Garrow’s Law). The TV drama portrays the court scenes brilliantly (all male jury; fuming judge, downtrodden defendant). The side-story is rather annoying (liaison dangereuse between Garrow & her ladyship), distracting from the legal & societal issues. The opening case was brilliant, most likely based on case law (R v Dudley and Stephens [1884]). The legal challenge, re. necessity, brilliantly portrayed, where a captain throw his slaves overboard because they were mere chatel. The book is of course better & serves as a wonderful legal teaching aid, depicting social (in)justice and advocacy at that time. Ursula Smartt, Author of ‘Media and Entertainment Law’ (Routledge); Grendon Tales (Waterside Press)

  2. Thanks Ursula – My only thought is that Dudley and Stevens was later (1884) so although available to the writers on the defence of necessity it would not have been known to Garrow – and although it deals with the defence of necessity, the Zong case involved different kind of defence in that the claim of necessity related to the attempt to defraud the insurance company, as I understand it, i.e. did it justify jettisoning the cargo and claiming thge loss. No, because it rained – hence the soggy notebook which Garrow latched onto at the eleventh hour aand produced a la Perry Mason right at the end! The only pity is that he didn’t burst through the court doors to do this as Mason surely would have. Garrow did not appear in the Zong case as admitted by Mark Pallis in his Guardian piece last week – to which I have already responded a follows: ‘Mark Pallis is right about William Garrow’s links to the abolition movement I am sure. He was a member and donor to the Philanthropic Society many of whose leading lights were also involved in the abolitionist movement. The question of dramatic licence runs throughout Garrow’s Law’. See

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