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'The Bill' producer teases series finale

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The Bill's series producer Tim Key has promised that fans can expect a "powerful" and "poignant" ending to the long-running police drama.

After 27 years on the air, the last ever episode of the show will be screened next week following ITV's decision to axe the programme due to falling ratings.

Speaking to DS about the series' conclusion, Key explained: "I don't want to give too much away, but we looked at ways of respecting the show's heritage and addressing some of those questions that we've been asked about certain aspects of the show.

"It's an ensemble piece and all of the cast are in there - they've all got good stuff to do, and I think the last five minutes are incredibly powerful, poignant, respectful and appropriate. I'm very, very proud of that last episode in particular."

Key admitted that the show's team quickly ruled out doing "anything cheap or sensational" as they considered how the drama should end.

He added: "I think if people are watching the last five minutes hoping that someone's going to run in, machine gun a load of people and set a load of explosives off, they're going to be very disappointed. But if they want something that respects the show that they've loved for 27 years, then I think they'll be very happy."

The Bill's two-part finale, which focuses on the issue of gangs, begins tonight at 9pm on ITV1. The concluding part airs next Tuesday at the same time.

> Click here to read our interview with The Bill's series producer Tim Key
> Click here to read more from Tim Key in Soap Scoop Get the Inside Soap magazine on your iPhone or iPad

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