Charles Dance leads a star studded cast which includes Samantha Bond and Mark Gatiss in BBC Four’s Consenting Adults which airs on BBC Four next month.
As the drama begins in the autumn of 1953 a series of high-profile court cases are bringing the law on homosexuality into the public eye.
Jack Wolfenden (Dance) – then an ambitious university vice-chancellor in Reading – is appointed to chair a Home Office committee set up to look into the law relating to homosexuality and prostitution.
What Wolfenden hasn’t told his political masters � and finds it hard to accept himself � that his own son, Jeremy, a brilliant undergraduate at Oxford, is gay.
Julian Mitchell’s drama asks whether this is what changes Wolfenden’s mind, a man who has admitted that he finds homosexuality “an abomination”? Or is it the evidence before the committee from witnesses such as Dr Kinsey or the Lord Chief Justice, Lord Goddard? The tensions at home between father and son are contrasted with the deliberations of the committee.
The eventual recommendation of Wolfenden’s committee, that homosexual acts between consenting adults in private should be decriminalised, led to the changes in the law 10 years later.
Wednesday 5 September, 9.00-10.20pm BBC FOUR