James Bolam quits New Tricks

James Bolam Bolam has been a member of the cast since the series began in 2004

Actor James Bolam is leaving BBC One's successful crime drama New Tricks after eight series.

Bolam revealed the news to producers during filming of the last series which has just finished airing.

New Tricks features ex-police officers who have come out of retirement to investigate unsolved crimes.

The corporation says it is in talks with Bolam - Jack Halford in the show - about returning for one episode next year.

"We are very sorry to see him go," said the show's executive producer Richard Burrell.

"But we fully understand that the time and commitment involved in filming a series is quite considerable," he added.

"We are very excited about the return of the rest of the cast and are thrilled to have been commissioned for another two series by the BBC."

CBeebies star

Bolam's character retired from the force when his wife Mary died following a hit-and-run accident.

Alun Armstrong, Dennis Waterman, James Bolam and Amanda Redman Redman, right, plays a detective superintendent who leads the team

New Tricks also stars Amanda Redman, Dennis Waterman and Alun Armstrong.

Bolam's real-life wife, Susan Jameson, plays the wife of Armstrong's character, Brian Lane, in the series.

Bolam, who was appointed MBE for his services to drama in 2009, also stars in CBeebies programme Grandpa in my Pocket.

He made his name on TV as Terry Collier in The Likely Lads.

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