The BEST Episodes of The Bill
Every episode ever - ranked by fan votes!
Last Updated: Feb 6, 2020
The Bill follows the officers of Sun Hill, a Metropolitan Police station located in the fictional Borough of Canley in London's East End. Created in 1983 by Geoff McQueen as a one-off drama called "Woodentop", The Bill was spun off as a full series, and ran for over 26 years and 2,425 episodes. Covering both uniformed officers and CID detectives, the series is renowned for its accurate and authentic portrayal of policing in London.
#1 - It's Not Such a Bad Job After All
Season 1 - Episode 5 - Aired Nov 13, 1984
After being given a hard time by Galloway after finding a suicide, WPC Ackland considers chucking in the job. Further investigation leads to a porn film ring.
#2 - The Drugs Raid
Season 1 - Episode 6 - Aired Nov 20, 1984
After a residents' meeting complaining about the drug problem on their estate, DI Galloway mentions that he had heard that an old illegal club has reopened in an abandoned theatre complex - this time dealing drugs. He asks a parent, Tombo Robinson, who used to be involved in the club, if he will infiltrate it to confirm Galloway's suspicions. Tombo reluctantly agrees, and meets with Galloway to tell him that a huge drug deal is going down that afternoon. Galloway quickly arranges a warrant, and sets about organising a huge raid on the club. The raid runs according to plan, but Tombo is stabbed by a dealer as he tries to let the police into the building. PC Edwards and Carver give chase to the dealer, but are alarmed when the suspect speeds off in a car bearing diplomatic plates. Galloway checks up on Tombo in hospital, and is shocked to discover that he has died and was a heroin addict. Returning to the station, Galloway is furious when Ch. Supt. Brownlow, a Home Office representative, and a diplomat from a small African nation request he relinquish the case to the government on diplomatic grounds.
#3 - A Dangerous Breed
Season 1 - Episode 7 - Aired Nov 27, 1984
PC Dave Litten is on secondment to CID, and is desperate to impress his boss, DI Roy Galloway. Galloway and Litten are about to have a meal at the local pub when a call comes through that a valuable necklace has been stolen from a local aristocrat, Lord Barstow-Smythe. Traffic problems hold them back as they race across Sun Hill trying to get there before the "woodentops". With Galloway and DS Roach busy, Litten talks to a local reporter and ends up mentioned in the local paper. Shortly afterwards, he is contacted by a mysterious stranger who offers to locate the burglers if Litten can convince Barstow-Smythe's insurance company to pay him the reward up-front. The Stranger then sets up two young lads to take the fall for the theft, and Litten proudly arrests them. Galloway recognises the MO of the case as that of a notorious conman, and lambasts Litten for his stupidity.
#4 - Burning The Books
Season 1 - Episode 9 - Aired Jan 8, 1985
After a briefcase is found by a young car thief, Det. Insp. Galloway thinks he can finally nick the 'Arthur Daley' of Sun Hill. Because of car problems he is unable to interview his chief suspect. After a warehouse fire that is supposed to convince Galloway the porn magazines were destroyed, they arrive back at the station just as the van carrying them drives away - having been parked at the back entrance for 24 hours.
#5 - The Sweet Smell of Failure
Season 1 - Episode 11 - Aired Jan 22, 1985
A tip in a counterfeit perfume case pulls in two very old aged pensioners who appear to have been pinching things since WWII. But after leading Carver and Ackland in a merry chase it turns out they aren't the real culprits.
#6 - Don't Like Mondays
Season 5 - Episode 59 - Aired Jul 25, 1989
PC Edwards and PC Smith are called to a disturbance at a local bank, where they are surprised to find Tosh Lines' wife and children causing a commotion as there is no money left in their account. Edwards makes a discrete call to Sgt. Peters, who suggests to Tosh that he head down to the bank and sort things out. As PC Ramsey and WPC Ackland also arrive, the bank is raided by an armed gang. Tosh Lines arrives and charges towards the bank, but as PC Ramsey runs to stop him, he is shot in the chest by one of the robbers. Ch. Insp. Conway negotiates with the gang as armed PT17 officers surround the building. Sgt. Cryer offers to drive the getaway car, but disconnects the ignition when he leaves it at the bank entrance. PC Smith and the other hostages are released, but PC Edwards is taken hostage. He manages to makes a run for it and the PT17 officers open fire on the car.
#7 - Return of the Hunter
Season 17 - Episode 25 - Aired Apr 6, 2001
Sgt. Cryer and PC Hayward attend an incident at a local school where an angry divorcee, Chris Finnessey, is demanding to see his son. When the boy's teacher warns the police of Finnessey's violent reputation and a possible restraining order against him, he grabs a Stanley knife and takes the teacher and Sgt. Cryer hostage. Faced with an armed suspect and two hostages, Supt. Chandler calls in SO19, although the only Trojan unit available is that of the newly-qualified PC Smith and PC Stanley. When Finnessey and his son leave the school building, Chandler gives authorisation to fire. Smith shoots first but to his horror, accidentally hits Cryer. Stanley takes down Finnessey. Cryer survives the shooting, but his career in the police is over.
#8 - Long Odds
Season 1 - Episode 4 - Aired Nov 6, 1984
P.C. Litten recognises a photo of a wanted armed robber, but takes the information to D.I. Galloway instead of Sgt. Cryer, and gets into trouble with both men. Meanwhile, a gang of thugs is robbing local shopkeepers, and P.C. Edwards purses a mugger into a derelict building and is trapped when the floor collapses beneath him.
#9 - Hostage
Season 2 - Episode 5 - Aired Dec 9, 1985
Sgt. Cryer is taking half the relief out on Sun Hill's annual fishing trip. PC Smith and DC Dashwood go to serve a warrant on Russell Archer over a non-appearance in court on a poaching charge. Archer manages to escape from Dashwood and Smith, and is later seen menacing a milkman with a sawn-off shotgun. He later holds up a bookies and a greengrocer, until he is spotted by PC Carver and PC Frank. who give chase. Frank is shot and wounded during the chase, and Archer ends up taking an elderly woman hostage in a retirement village. With the fishing trip cancelled, DS Roach takes charge of the siege operation until DI Galloway and Ch. Supt. Brownlow arrive. Attempts to contact the increasingly unstable Archer fail, until he asks to speak to Sgt. Cryer whom he saw in the betting shop. Cryer enters the flat, and attempts to talk Archer into giving himself up. With WPC Ackland posing as a Meals-on-Wheels driver, Galloway, Roach and PT17 officers storm the flat and shoot Archer.
#10 - Ringer
Season 2 - Episode 7 - Aired Jan 6, 1986
There is a serious road crash involving a Porsche, a motorcycle, a coach, a lorry and a Cortina resulting in six deaths. The Porsche had been tampered with prior to the accident and turns out to have been made of three different cars. Brownlow sets up a temporary morgue at a local school; WPC Martella and PC Muswell have the job of informing relatives of the deaths. After following the trail from the Porsche, DI Galloway raids a scrapyard only to find DS Burnside from the robbery squad undercover as a buyer, about to break the ring, but having forgotten to tell Galloway.
#11 - The Chief Super's Party
Season 2 - Episode 12 - Aired Feb 10, 1986
P.C. Muswell and P.C. Lyttleton are on the lookout for a lorry full of stolen woolen coats. Ch. Supt. Brownlow is throwing a farewell party for his retiring clerk. D.I. Roy Galloway questions D.S. Burnside when he gatecrashes the party, and Burnside admits that he fancies June Ackland. D.C. Mike Dashwood realises the scotch being poured at the bar has been stolen, and Galloway asks Ackland to keep the remaining bottles aside as evidence. Despite warnings from the D.I. and the Chief Super, D.S. Ted Roach drives home extremely drunk and crashes his car into a fence. Knowing he'll be sacked if he's found out, Roach sleeps on a friend's boat overnight while he sobers up, but spots the coat thieves on the docks when he awakens, and the men are arrested when they are found stuck in a freezer. Roach also sweet-talks the man whose garden he crashed into by offering to get him into the Special Constabulary. P.C. Reg Hollis grasses on Roach to Brownlow, in the hope of getting the clerk's job.
#12 - Rough in the Afternoon
Season 1 - Episode 8 - Aired Dec 4, 1984
PC Carver and PC Edwards are called to a domestic and are informed by the neighbour that a child was taken by his father. Meanwhile, the mother has turned up at the station to report the abduction in person.
#13 - Death of a Cracksman
Season 1 - Episode 10 - Aired Jan 15, 1985
Alfie Mullins is a non-returned prisoner, not a dangerous prisoner as reported. He is an old-fashioned safe-cracker who, just as he is returning to the prison, is approached by one of a gang of thieves who want Alfie to open a safe they pinched. While they are talking Alfie is accidentally killed. The safe is rigged to explode by remote control which P.C. Carver accidentally sets off when he uses his radio.
#14 - Snouts and Red Herrings
Season 2 - Episode 1 - Aired Nov 11, 1985
Amidst renovation chaos at Sun Hill, a new P.C., Abe Lyttleton, arrives a day early. He is Sun Hill's first black police officer, and although he is friendly and popular, his arrival is not appreciated by bigoted cop P.C. Pete Muswell. D.C. Dashwood recognises a man who has brought in his papers for a car (licence, M.O.T. form and insurance). He is using a false name and address. During electrical repairs, the personal radios are out of action and as a result, a CID operation is blown.
#15 - Suspects
Season 2 - Episode 2 - Aired Nov 18, 1985
Martella arrests a woman who has been 'pregnant' for 13 months, concealing stolen cigarettes in the 'bulge'.
#16 - Lost
Season 2 - Episode 3 - Aired Nov 25, 1985
DS Roach and DC Dashwood are on an obbo at a phone box to catch someone making hoax bomb threats to the Town Hall. Another case soon takes precedence, however, when a woman arrives at the station and reports her eight-year-old daughter Samantha missing. When Samantha's friend Theresa tells WPC Ackland that they were approached by a flasher, there is concern that the girl could have been abducted by a child sex offender. CID question suspects in the area while a full-scale search is underway. Ackland notices that Samantha likes boats, so the search is concentrated in the docks area, and a drunken boat owner gives a description of a woman he saw with the girl. With Roach and Dashwood halfway to Brighton to question a paedophile, a call comes in to PC Carver in the incident room from a shop assistant who recognised Samantha and the woman who bought her some colouring books. Finding the woman's identity from credit card slips, DI Galloway and WPC Ackland find Samantha safe and well in the
#17 - Home Beat
Season 2 - Episode 4 - Aired Dec 2, 1985
Brownlow wants to start a Neighbourhood watch scheme with the support of Smith and Carver. After a rather heated meeting that got hijacked by interlopers, he discovers his petrol was nicked. The Ahmeds are having problems as racist language has been graffitied upon their house, soon after a protest erupts and their house is later firebombed. CID raid a modern day 'Fagin' who has been using a youth group as cover.
#18 - This Little Pig
Season 2 - Episode 6 - Aired Dec 23, 1985
P.C. Taffy Edwards corners a pig that was released from the City Farm and gets dropped in it by P.C. Muswell. Muswell has problems with income tax on wages from the miners' strike. P.C. Reg Hollis makes initial enquiries about the Chief Super's clerk's job. Both D.I. Galloway and P.C. Cryer have problems with an overtime clamp-down and get another lecture from Brownlow about it. Fur protestors are arrested outside a fur shop. Taffy, W.P.C. June Ackland and Muswell arrest a man on his wedding day for non-appearance in court.
#19 - Public and Confidential
Season 2 - Episode 8 - Aired Jan 13, 1986
A man is throwing tiles off a roof and PC Lyttleton, who is suffering from vertigo, is sent up to arrest him. A Polish sailor turns up at the station seeking political asylum. DS Roach and DC Dashwood catch a man who has been ripping people off posing as a gas board official. Ch. Supt. Brownlow talks to PC Edwards about taking a position in the coroner's office. Sgt. Cryer is shocked when Mrs. Penny accuses her husband of beating her up.
#20 - Loan Shark
Season 2 - Episode 9 - Aired Jan 20, 1986
A young mother caught shoplifting at a supermarket confesses to Sgt Cryer that she is in debt to local loan shark 'Aunty' Peg Miller. PC Edwards checks cases of fly tipping (unauthorised dumping of rubble) in the area and discovers some disaffected Welsh miners may be responsible. A Mrs Taylor makes a complaint about a noisy neighbour, but when WPC Ackland investigates, she finds the neighbour dead.
#21 - Whose Side Are You On?
Season 2 - Episode 11 - Aired Feb 3, 1986
D.C. Mike Dashwood has organised a five-a-side indoor football match against a local youth group. Ch. Supt. Brownlow sees it as great publicity, and ropes in D.I. Roy Galloway for photo opportunities, despite his objections. D.S. Ted Roach investigate the murder of an old derelict, known only as 'King Henry'. P.C. Jim Carver injures his ankle chasing some bag-snatchers, and while Sgt. Cryer takes his place on the beat, Dashwood thinks Cryer is too old to take Carver's place on the team. P.C. Abe Lyttleton suggests W.P.C. Viv Martella, as she is good at netball. Dashwood convinces her to join the team, gaining brownie points from Mr Brownlow for selecting a W.P.C. for the squad. P.C. Pete Muswell arrests an unlicensed trader at the market selling fake designer watches. He chats up a traffic warden, and arranges to meet her for a date, but she stands him up. Muswell turns up at the match, and Cryer has a word with him about his prejudice against Lyttleton. After a shaky start, the Sun Hi
#22 - Some You Win, Some You Lose
Season 3 - Episode 2 - Aired Sep 28, 1987
Ch. Supt. Brownlow and D.I. Galloway lead a massive raid on a drug den on a local council estate which escalates into a full-blown riot, but half a million pounds worth of crack cocaine is recovered. P.C. Melvin loses a handcuffed prisoner in the confusion, but he is arrested by P.C. Hollis when he turns up at the station asking for his handcuffs to be removed. The operation is down to D.C. Dashwood, whose snout is feeding them information on the main drug dealer. Meeting with the snout to get the location of the main drug lab, Dashwood is alarmed when P.C. Carver recognises his informant as Dougie Gardiner. C.I.D. raid the location given to Dashwood by Gardiner, but find nothing except a student squat. Desperate to arrest the dealer, and furious with Dashwood for lying about his snout, Galloway stakes out the dealer's Range Rover in a car park, despite Brownlow insisting he end the operation. When a borough councillor complains to Insp. Kite about the estate raid, it is discovered that the squat has a hidden basement. Galloway and his team race back there only to discover they have been beaten to it by the Drugs Squad from the Yard. Sun Hill holds a public viewing for recovered stolen property, but a gold snuff box is re-stolen before the owner arrives to claim it.
#23 - Brownie Points
Season 3 - Episode 3 - Aired Oct 5, 1987
P.C. Reg Hollis has been nominated for the position of the station's Federation Rep. He's sure he's a shoo-in, but P.C. Shaw tells him W.P.C. Ackland has applied as well. A D.A.C. visits Sun Hill at the same time as a brownie pack. The ""Tom Squad"" is out in force, cracking down on prostitution in Sun Hill. Due to the VIP visitor, Shaw and Edwards are unable to process the ladies they have arrested, and sit with them in the van until the D.A.C. has left the building. P.C. Carver goes to warn a prostitute, Shirley, about the crackdown, as she is a snout for D.I. Galloway, but is he is stopped by P.C. Edwards and P.C. Shaw who tease him about curb-crawling. D.S. Ted Roach and P.C. Yorkie Smith go to a case conference with social workers when it is suspected a young girl is being assaulted by her mother. Roach doesn't seem interested as he thinks social workers are useless, but once the meeting is over, Roach organises a raid to take the little girl into protective custody.
#24 - Missing, Presumed Dead
Season 3 - Episode 4 - Aired Oct 12, 1987
There's been a shooting, but none of the neighbours seem to have witnessed anything. While chasing a possible suspect, Sgt. Bob Cryer hits a pedestrian. During door to door inquiries P.C. Yorkie Smith discovers a man with exotic animals including snakes, owls and a crocodile in his bathtub. D.S. Roach is attacked by some thugs, and the next day tries to beat them with an iron bar until P.C. Carver stops him. His attackers are later kneecapped as a message to D.I. Galloway as to who really is the law on the manor.
#25 - Domestics
Season 3 - Episode 5 - Aired Oct 19, 1987
Residents take action against a women's refuge in their area, while P.C. Yorkie Smith gives advice to the husband of a woman at the refuge. As D.I. Galloway gets tough with his detectives about the clear up rates of burglaries in the area, W.P.C. Martella and P.C. Edwards pull in a man suspected of three burglaries. P.C. Edwards is getting a hard time because of his impending marriage.