A new long-running drama series from G F Newman based on the characters from the multi-award winning writer's best-selling crime novel. Spanning six decades, it plots the course of one family against the backdrop of a revolution in crime as the underworld extends its influence to the very heart of the establishment, in an uncomfortable relationship of shared values.
Joey Oldman is a Russian Jew, who arrived in Britain before the war with only two words of English and married Cathy Braden. They had a son, Brian, and a daughter, Rose. Cathy's widowed mother, Gracie, takes up with a famous and glamorous gangster, Billy Hill, while her brother Jack wants to become World Light Heavyweight Boxing Champion. Both the army and the Kray twins interfere with this ambition. Jack is left feeling bitter and angry and plunges headlong into crime, running protection rackets and claiming a piece of other criminals' sometimes infamous pies. His actions become ever more savage and bizarre and harder to reconcile.
Haunted by the murder of his grandfather which he witnessed when he was six, Brian Oldman holds a terrible secret that he must keep for fear of his life as he falls deeper under his mother's spell. But there is a more disturbing secret he has yet to discover - one that will threaten his very existence. All the while he becomes a willing participant in the criminal underworld in the 1950s, where gangs such as the Krays and the Richardson are emerging to challenge the old guard in savage battles for territory.
With Ross Kemp as Narrator.
Written by G F Newman
Produced and directed by Clive Brill
A Pacificus production for BBC Radio 4.