Auld Lang Syne is the 1174th episode of The Bill

Polly and Nick arrive at the Harkness residence, where they complain that a man climbed over their wall and then appeared to drop behind their shed. They confront the man, who appears to have hurt his foot. He identifies himself as Gerry Bisset and claims he was taking a short cut when he fell. Nick checks his driving licence and Polly gets a no trace from a PNC check. She still thinks there's something fishy about the man and they decide to run him down to the hospital. As they check into casualty Gerry drives to fix his watch, it was smashed in the fall, and keeps playing a tinny version of Auld Lang Syne. Liz Rawton phones Polly at the hospital, she's investigating a series of break-ins near to where they found Bisset, and he seems to match the description. Liz tells Polly to check out his address whilst she'll come down to the hospital. Bisset is left in Slater's capable hands.

Polly arrives at Gillray Street just as a young blonde woman called Sarah Smith arrives home. She describes Bisset to a tee and says he lives on his own in the upstairs flat. Liz arrives at the hospital and questions Bisset. She doesn't believe for second his story about taking a shortcut. Bisset comes clean, and tells Liz he was actually escaping from an irate husband. He's been having an affair for about 8 months, but today the woman’s husband came home early. Liz accepts that and as she has nothing to hold him on, he's free to go. Back at the station however Polly receives a visit from Mr. Harkness who has found a bag of tools used for breaking and entering, stuffed underneath his shed...

Polly and Liz dash to the hospital but Bisset has had his foot plastered and been discharged. They go back to Gillray Street where they meet Gerry Bisset, the real one this time. This Gerry claims he had his driving licence stolen a few months ago and shows them his replacement. Polly realises she's been conned and goes to the downstairs flat. It's occupied by a Mrs. Naylor, not Smith, an elderly woman who lives on her own. Polly berates herself for assuming the woman lived there just because she had a key. Back at the station Nick protests that he didn't let Bisset out of his sight once, and that he never used a phone. Polly remembers that he didn't have a mobile with him when they searched him in the garden. They return to the hospital and check out the payphone to discover its not working. With the help of CCTV footage, they watch Bisset pay a youth to use his mobile phone, all this takes place whilst Nick the super sleuth has his back turned chatting up one of the nurses!

Polly and Liz track down the youth who initially thinks he's in trouble. He eventually agrees to let them look at the phone and trace the last number dialled. This leads them to Angela Foyle, who confirms she owns the mobile phone to which the call was made. However although the phone is in her name, it belongs to her daughter Sarah. Polly identifies her as the blonde woman from a family photo. Liz describes 'Bisset' to her but she claims not to know any of Sarah's friend. Polly asks to check out the garden, and sure enough it leads on to the Harkness garden. The duo press Mrs. Foyle further saying she had a lucky escape that morning. Angela tells them that her daughter is involved with a drug addict named Tony Boyce. They had a row the previous evening, and her husband had thrown Sarah out the house. She tells them where to find Boyce.

They go to Sarah's flat and start looking around. Sarah claims she hasn't seen Boyce in days, and denies deliberately deceiving Polly. A search reveals nothing but just as they are about to leave Polly hears Auld Lang Syne coming from one of the wardrobes. Despite Sarah's protests, Polly goes into the bedroom and sure enough, Boyce is hidden in the back of a wardrobe, beneath a pile of clothes.

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