ITV has commissioned a six-part drama about the life of Women’s Institute members on the Home Front during World War II, RadioTimes.com can reveal.
Based on Julie Summers’s book Jambusters: The Story of the Women’s Institute in the Second World War, the drama follows a group of inspirational WI members in a rural Cheshire community making do as many of the menfolk head off to fight.
Filming of the drama, called Jambusters, starts in September for a likely broadcast at the end of the next year.
The series has been created and written by Lewis writer Simon Block and will be produced by the ITV Studios department which is overseen by Francis Hopkinson.
ITV said in a statement: “The isolated village couldn’t feel further away from the impending bloodshed and battlefields and yet it is not immune from the effects of war. As the conflict takes hold, and separates the women from husbands, fathers, sons and brothers, the characters find themselves under increasing and extraordinary pressures in a rapidly fragmenting world.
“By banding together, the women will help maintain the nation’s fabric in its darkest hour, and they will discover inner resources that will forever change their lives.”
ITV director of drama Steve November said Block’s writing has “given Julie Summers’ wonderful book a fictional life”, adding: “ The women are real and engaging and have fantastic spirit and attitude. With World War II on the horizon, multiple strands of plot interweave to create a period drama full of jeopardy and intrigue, but also great humanity and modernity.”
Hopkinson added: “Thanks to Simon Block’s brilliant script, inspired by Julie Summers’s book, this series will take a fresh look at life on the Home Front, showing both the tragedies and the triumphs, and offering some wonderful roles for Britain’s top actresses. We are delighted that ITV share our enthusiasm for the project.”