Foreign Body
Episode No.   Series
1426 1999x037
Original Airdate
24 June 1999 FlagIcon UK small
Written By
Tom Needham
Directed By
Chris Lovett
Episode Chronology:
Foreign Body is the 1426th episode of The Bill

A suspected armed robber dies after his car crashes during a chase with police. He is identified as Alain Savoie, a French national, and the body of an English woman is found in the boot of his stolen car. The woman is identified as Carol Archer, and scorch marks on her back indicate she was electrocuted in her bathtub, and Savoie was trying to dispose of the body. According to Carol's mother, Carol's husband Peter was in France looking for her. DI Chris Deakin, a fluent Francophone, suggests they send officers to interview Savoie's sister in France. DCI Jack Meadows, not wanting to "pass up the opportunity of a free trip to France", grabs the chance to make the journey himself despite the fact that he cannot speak French. Deakin wanted to go but Meadows, outranking him, insists that he stay behind. So never admitting to Meadows that he can speak French and in a small act of revenge, Deakin suggests Meadows take DC Rod Skase with him as an interpreter. Earlier, and employing a few simple and incorrectly worded phrases, Skase had pretended that he was a fluent French speaker in an attempt to secure a place on the trip, although Deakin had seen through his deception. Once they are on the ferry, Skase admits to Meadows that he cannot speak French either, much to Meadows annoyance. With some trouble and the use of a French phrase book, they manage to find their hotel where Meadows clearly hits it off with the landlady, Claudette. Meanwhile back at Sunhill, CID are informed that Peter Archer is headed back to the UK. However he does not board the ferry, and Interpol informs that back in 1989, his previous (German) wifes body was found in a ditch near Calais. With the help and translation of Capitaine Pierre Legrand of the Gendarmerie Nationale, Meadows interviews Simone Savoie, but she denies knowing the suspect. Meadows and Skase follow her home, but are arrested by the gendarmes for spying! After much convincing and a night in the cells, Meadows and Skase are released. Meadows manages to get the gendarmes to arrest Archer, and after pursuing her train, they manage to intercept Simone Savoie who is also in on the plot.

  • Simon Rouse as D.C.I. Meadows
  • Iain Fletcher as D.C. Skase
  • Shaun Scott as D.I. Deakin
  • George Rossi as D.C. Lennox
  • Joy Brook as D.C. Holmes
  • Billy Murray as D.S. Beech
  • Gregory Donaldson as D.C. Proctor
  • Peter Ellis as Ch. Supt. Brownlow
  • Ben Roberts as Ch. Insp. Conway
  • Mark Wingett as P.C. Carver
  • Samantha Robson as P.C. Hagen
  • Matthew Crompton as P.C. Harker
  • Jane Wall as P.C. Worrell
  • Graham Cole as P.C. Stamp
  • Trudie Goodwin as Sgt. Ackland
  • Eric Richard as Sgt. Cryer
  • Lisa Geoghan as P.C. Page

This feature-length (90-minute) episode marked an official return to twice-weekly broadcasts.

This feature-length episode was filmed principally on location in France.

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