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The Great Train Robbery

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It’s easy to get the idea, as one commentator says here, that the 1963 Great Train Robbery was some kind of Ealing comedy. It wasn’t, as is made painfully clear in this engrossing film, which does much to dispel the myths about the supposed modern day highwaymen who stole more than £2 million.

Some of the robbers are interviewed about the raid, including its planner, Bruce Reynolds, a man who sounds disconcertingly like the Peter Cook character EL Wisty. Your jaw will drop when another of the gang claims train driver Jack Mills, badly hurt after being hit on the head, thanked them for being “thorough gentlemen”.


A look back at the August 1963 Royal Mail train heist, featuring interviews with key figures including Ronnie Biggs' ex-wife Charmian, relatives of the robbers, and the police officers who discovered the gang's hideout at Leatherslade Farm. The programme looks at how some media reports led to a popular perception of the culprits as folk heroes and considers the long-term impact the crime had on them.

Cast & Crew

Director Marion Milne
Executive Producer Alexander Gardiner
Writer Marion Milne

Reality History

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