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Magpie in the Dock


We have produced a Style Guide to help editors follow a standard format when editing a listing. If you are unsure how best to edit this programme please take a moment to read it.
Many bird species have found themselves increasingly threatened by pesticides, intensive farming and urbanisation. Not so the magpie, busy multiplying and taking up residence in every town garden.
Whether the bird is villainous, as the prosecution alleges, or simply resourceful is the substance of tonight's courtroom drama, which is punctuated by some spectacular film sequences. Geoffrey Palmer makes the case for the defence and also narrates the natural-history film segments, while the prosecution is in the hands of Nicholas Rowe, who starred in Steven Spielberg 's Young Sherlock Holmes.
"This film will explain why magpies instil such feelings of loathing or love," says producer/director Nigel Marven. "And thanks to technology developed by the BBC Natural History Unit, we will be able to fly with the magpies, swoop with a sparrowhawk and eavesdrop in a nest as a magpie feeds its babies."
Written by Mervyn Haisman


Unknown: Geoffrey Palmer
Unknown: Nicholas Rowe
Unknown: Steven Spielberg
Unknown: Sherlock Holmes.
Director: Nigel Marven.
Written By: Mervyn Haisman
Counsel for the Defence: Geoffrey Palmer
Counsel for the Prosecution: Nicholas Rowe
Judge: Moray Watson
Clerk of the Court: Robin Marchal

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This site contains the BBC listings information which the BBC printed in Radio Times between 1923 and 2009. You can search the site for BBC programmes, people, dates and Radio Times editions.

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Feedback about Magpie in the Dock, BBC One London, 20.00, 30 December 1993
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