Emilia Fox, Richard Lintern and David Caves discuss series 17 of hit BBC One drama Silent Witness, including what the new head of the Lyell Centre, Dr Thomas Chamberlain, brings to the series.
Introduction from writer Tim Prager
Writer Tim Prager introduces Series 17 of Silent Witness, as the show returns to BBC One this January.
Silent Witness is back, returning with five two-part dramas in which forensic pathology and forensic science are the means to investigate our fears, weaknesses, manipulations and desires.
Change at the Lyell Centre continues as Dr Nikki Alexander and her colleagues Jack Hodgson and Clarissa Mullery come to terms with the arrival of a new boss, pathologist and politically adroit Thomas Chamberlain played by Richard Lintern (Shadow Line, Spies Of Warsaw). Tension is high and the team are openly sceptical of his good intentions. Chamberlain quickly recognises he will have to earn their confidence and trust if he is to make a success of his new appointment.
Silent Witness is an extraordinarily resilient programme, able to grow and adapt, as it delivers mysteries, which can be both thought-provoking and thrilling. Emilia Fox, along with David Caves, Richard Lintern and Liz Carr create a new and dynamic chemistry at the heart of the series, bringing fresh energy and passion to each story.
The producing team behind the programme’s most recent success, Executive Producer Phillippa Giles and Producer Sharon Bloom, have worked hard to ensure that the stories continue to be ambitious. The range of subjects tackled are a measure of the show’s flexibility and its determination to remain current as it challenges as well as entertains its audience. The stories in this series range from extortion that leads to murder; Nikki’s pursuit of the truth that frees a convicted killer; a trip to Scotland to investigate a violent death; and the hunt for a baby and ends with Jack’s confrontation with his troubled past.
Silent Witness goes from strength to strength as it continues to attract the finest quality of irecting and acting talent, and once again delivers the highest production values on British television.
Dr Nikki Alexander
Forensic pathologist Nikki joined The Lyell Centre in 2004 when she gate-crashed Leo Dalton’s morgue to use the mortuary’s facial reconstruction software… and never left. An optimist with a curious and questioning approach, Nikki is highly emotionally intelligent and has a sense of vulnerability about her. However, when she’s up against it, Nikki is perfectly capable of showing her mettle. She’s dealt with horrific situations in her work as a pathologist, and despite losing her mother, and then her feckless father, her own strength and determination has allowed her to follow her own path.
Straight-talking and disarmingly quick-witted, Jack is one of the youngest forensic scientists in the country, but what he lacks in experience, he more than makes up for in talent and dedication. Jack joined The Lyell Centre last year after leaving the largest, best-funded private forensic services lab in London in order to move more quickly up the hierarchy. Clever but not particularly cerebral, he exudes the confidence of someone who always believes he’s right, but has sufficient humility to admit his errors. Athletic with a brutal streak, Jack uses his amateur cage-fighting as a release, or maybe self-inflicted punishment?
Dr Thomas Chamberlain
A talented and experienced forensic pathologist, Thomas has a political nose that makes him a good choice to lead the Lyell Centre forward. When Lyell Centre directors head-hunted Thomas, he was seduced by the increase in money and status, but the challenge of running a cutting-edge forensic facility sealed the deal. Positive, dynamic, and charismatic, Thomas is a social animal who’s very astute at reading people. Keen to ingratiate himself into the team, Thomas craves a sense of belonging he’s never had before. Yet, he’ll soon see that achieving this and following in Leo Dalton’s illustrious footsteps are tougher than he ever thought.
Amusingly dead-pan and a great listener, Clarissa is a super-efficient forensic examiner who speaks with authority. Experienced in many disciplines, from ballistics to blood-splatter analysis, Clarissa enjoyed a successful working relationship with Jack in London over three years until he persuaded her to join him at the Lyell Centre last year. Armed with an encyclopaedic knowledge of forensic breakthroughs and always abreast of advancements in the field, Clarissa has been crucial to Jack’s rise to lead forensic scientist – and he knows it. An intensely private woman, Clarissa’s personal life remains a complete mystery to all who work with her.
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Just found a little snippet from an interview with the Telegraph:
Fox returns to den at Christmas
Emilia Fox, who split up with the 51-year-old television chef Marco Pierre White last month, is looking forward to spending time with her parents this Christmas.
“I love this time of year,” the daughter of the actors Edward Fox and Joanna David tells Mandrake at the launch of the Goring’s luxury Christmas tree collection. “I can’t wait to spend it with my family.”
The star of Silent Witness, 39, has a three-year-old daughter, Rose, by her former boyfriend, Jeremy Gilley, the founder of the campaigning organisation Peace One Day.
“I adore Christmas, especially getting the tree,” she says. “We haven’t got ours yet, but this year we might get a couple of trees, as I want to try some different decorations.”
This is truly sweet Christmas tree and decorations… wouldn’t be the same without them!
The Care of the Next Infant Scheme from the Lullaby Trust is a great way to give bereaved parents the comfort that when their next baby comes along there are a group of people, health visitors, paediatricians and other health professionals, looking out for their baby. When you have a lost a child to SIDs it really is quite scary to go on and have another baby. I can completely understand why many people wouldn’t!
Last night I attended an event at St James’s Palace hosted by The Duchess of Gloucester. This event was to mark the 25th anniversary of the Lullaby Trust’s CONI scheme. I felt a bit of fraud being there as I have not actually used the CONI scheme as it is not available in our area. CONI is available in over 90% of the country and yet is still evades the East Yorkshire area. When I had my next baby I had to fight to get the things, readily available in other areas, which other parents got as a matter of course. For instance, an apnoea monitor is loaned to parents to keep an eye on your baby’s breathing; it took me lots of paperwork and faffing about to get one of these when Alex was born.
When Alex was born he was delivered breech. Feet first no less, He required oxygen and although it was thought he would be ok he was monitored in the special baby care unit for 24 hours. Whilst he was in there I mention to a doctor about the CONI scheme and he told me they had their own scheme in place. To be honest, I wish I had taken it up further with him but I had just had a baby and wasn’t in that frame of mind. He was wrong though in my opinion. I had to ask for everything we received. Not once was anything offered.
Both myself and the Lullaby Trust are really disappointed that CONI is still not available in the East Yorkshire area nine years on!
On a positive note, we met some lovely people at St James’s Palace including Emilia Fox who is an ambassador for the Lullaby Trust. She was a lovely lady, genuinely interested in what I had to say.
We also met Jennie Henley and her friend Melissa. We had planned on meeting up at an event with Britmums last week but sadly circumstances prevented that. It was lovely to meet Jennie, her lovely baby, Matilda Mae died earlier this year. The sadness in Jennie’s eyes breaks my heart, I hope, that in some way, meeting parents whose child died some time ago gives Jennie some hope that things will get better. The heartbreak and pain will never go but you do learn to live with it. Life does move on.
We also met Alison, who is the chief of CONI for TLT and I chatted with her with regards promoting CONI in the East Yorkshire area. I feel it will be my new mission, to get the CONI scheme into the Hull and East Riding hospitals, if for no other reason than it gives parents peace of mind.
I must mention the magician, Darren Campbell, at the event, what a lovely guy. He is probably one of the best close up magicians I have ever seen. He did a couple of card tricks for us and then he asked my husband to sign a card. This card turned up in the magician’s wallet that was in his jacket pocket! Just amazing! He could have stopped there and we would have been super impressed but he took a ring from my finger, it disappeared from his hand and turned attached to his car keys!
Our swift trip to London was completed with some fabulous magnum chocolates in the goodie bag at the end; we certainly enjoyed tucking in to them on the way home! Shame there are no pictures though, I looked pretty awesome in my new dress, kindly sorted by Becky of Mrs BeBe fame, but heyho, that’s security for you!
An Evening at The Palace
The first is meeting HRH The Duchess of Gloucester
She is a beautiful lady
So graceful and kind
A wonderful listener
She shook my hand, twice
She asked about Matilda and about the twins
When I told her about Esther and William
And how they talk everyday about Baby Tilda in the sky
She had tears in her eyes
And to my total surprise she cuddled me
And it was wonderful
And I know that she meant it
And she does not know me but she cares
And that meant so much to me
I managed to stay composed thankfully
Which is much more than I did when I met the wonderful Emilia Fox
Emilia Fox is a heroine of mine
I have idolised her for a long time
I promised myself that I would not gush at her if I met her
But I did
Louise from Lullaby Trust asked if I would like to meet her
I said that I would but I couldn’t because it would be too emotional
My love affair with Emilia Fox began before my children were born
She is a wonderful actress
She reads children’s audio books
Including Owl Babies which we adore
She played Morgause in Merlin
I copied her hair from my wedding!
I promised I would not gush about any of these things
But in fact I did
And we laughed together
For me through my tears
As I was so honoured that this amazing lady
Came over to me and hugged me
She sat down with me and held my hand
She asked me about Tilda
And she really listened when I talked about her
I could have talked to her all night
It was wonderful
I talked about my beautiful baby girl
To the stunning and amazing Emilia Fox
I was so excited when she became an Ambassador for The Lullaby Trust
She was everything I hoped she would be
And she had time to sit and talk about Tilda
And that meant the world.
The palace was full of lovely people last night
I could write and write and write about the evening
An anniversary of 25 years outstanding work
St James’s Palace was the perfect setting for Christmas carols and Yuletide fayre tonight, in the presence of HRH The Duchess Gloucester, Patron of The Lullaby Trust and lauded international actress and Charity Ambassador, Ms Emilia Fox. The Duchess and Ms Fox attended The Lullaby Trust charity event to celebrate 25 years of the charity’s Care of Next Infant (CONI) programme. Over 300 people, including 250 health visitors, were also in attendance at this delightful event, supported by the No1 safer sleep brand in the UK and Australia, The Gro Company.
The reception, set against the backdrop of a 16 foot Christmas tree and the voices of the Olswang LLP Choir, not only marked the 25th anniversary of The Lullaby Trust’s CONI programme, but also recognised the hard work of these highly experienced health visitors who offer this unique service throughout the country. CONI provides support to families who are looking forward to a new arrival, but who have experienced the sudden and unexpected death of a baby in the past.
Francine Bates OBE, Chief Executive of The Lullaby Trust, said during her speech: “We were delighted to have our Patron, The Duchess of Gloucester here tonight to share this special occasion, as well as our valued Ambassador, Ms Emilia Fox, who has taken time out of her busy filming schedule to be with us.
Through CONI, The Lullaby Trust provides funds for specialist-monitoring equipment and provides health advice and reassurance along the way until the new baby is six months old. This programme has supported over 20,000 families in the last 25 years.
Christian Jones, Managing Director of The Gro Company, added: “Tonight has been a wonderful testament to The Lullaby Trust and CONI’s dedication during the last 25 years. Having HRH The Duchess of Gloucester in attendance, The Lullaby Trust Patron, as well as Charity Ambassador, Emilia Fox, made the evening evermore special. It was a pleasure for The Gro Company to be part of these group celebrations.”
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Notes to Editors:
About The Lullaby Trust
The Lullaby Trust provides specialist support for bereaved families and promotes expert advice on safer baby sleep.
Working with the NHS we run a national, health-visitor led service for bereaved parents, Care of Next Infant (CONI) programme, which supports families before and after the birth of their new baby.
We are committed to commissioning new research projects to understand much more about what causes these tragic deaths and how we can prevent them.
The Lullaby Trust also runs an information line for parents and professionals (0808 802 6869) and a dedicated support line for bereaved families (0808 802 6868). Both are free to call from landlines and mobiles.
Advice including, factsheets and the latest research can be found at www.lullabytrust.org.uk
We campaign tirelessly, lobbying government to keep sudden infant death on the public health agenda.
For more information about The Lullaby Trust and CONI please visit www.lullabytrust.org.uk
About the Gro Company
The Gro Company is the No1 safer sleep brand in the UK and Australia. Lauded with over 50 industry Awards and a presence in over 20 international territories, The Gro Company is one of the UK’s most respected, fast-growth export businesses. The Gro Company’s range of British-designed products for newborns, babies and toddlers are supported with credentials from The Lullaby Trust and are 100% loved by their international customer base.
For more information about The Gro Company please visit www.gro.co.uk
I have also uploaded the photos on our Tumblr – check them out here…
Get an exclusive insight into the Rapture, Blister, Burn publicity shoot with our behind-the-scenes photo gallery of Emma Fielding and Emilia Fox.
Added a few additional HQ photos from the private event Emilia attended last week. Thanks Helen at jrhysmeyers.com for these gorgeous photos!
Stars of hit period drama DOWNTON ABBEY will be filling in as serving staff at upmarket London restaurant The Ivy on Sunday (01Dec13) in a bid to raise money for charity.
Actors Laura Carmichael, Jim Carter and Brendan Coyle will join writer Julian Fellowes to serve diners at the event organised by their co-star Samantha Bond.
Guests will pay £150-a-head for the privilege of being waited on by stars including Emilia Fox, Maureen Lipman and Imelda Staunton.
Carmichael had the chance to practice her serving skills during the filming of an adaptation of Madame Bovary, in which she plays a servant, and she tells the London Evening Standard, “All that bobbing – I’m very versatile.”
The money raised at the event will be donated to Acting for Others, a group of charities working with ill, injured or elderly actors and backstage staff.
Bond says, “The thing about our industry is when life is good it’s very good and when life is bad, it’s hateful. If you’re unable to work there’s no back-up.”