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BBC One Sherwood: Village speak out after finale of drama based on real-life murders

today2 July 2022

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BBC drama Sherwood brought the nation’s attention to Annesley in Nottinghamshire, 18 years after real-life events had done the same. The show, which was written by Nottinghamshire-born writer James Graham, was inspired by two murders which took place near the village of Annesley Woodhouse and sparked a huge manhunt by Nottinghamshire Police.

They focused on the killings of Keith Frogson, who was known as ‘Froggy’ in Annesley Woodhouse where he lived, and Chanel Taylor – although the latter’s death was heavily fictionalised as family preferred not to be involved in the making of the show. Froggy, like the character Gary Jackson, was shot with a crossbow on his doorstep back in 2004 with his killer – Robert Boyer – fleeing to the woods after the brutal murder.

Meanwhile, Chanel was murdered by her father, Terry Rodgers, who then also went to ground in the same woodland where Boyer was hiding from police. The killings sparked a huge manhunt and Sherwood focused on the effect of the Met Police’s presence in the former mining community and the existing divisions created by the strikes in the 1980s.

Killer who shot man with a crossbow and attacked him with sword – read more here

The six-part series concluded on Tuesday, June 28, when the finale aired on BBC1, with the show receiving rave reviews from critics and viewers online. In the village of Annesley Woodhouse, a lot of similarities can be seen in what was shown on TV screens across the country – the houses and streets have the same look and feel, there is a traditional working men’s club and allotments which feature heavily in the show.

Roger Lancashire, 76, has lived in the village since 1969. He used to run a hairdressers on Main Street but has since retired. He said: “I didn’t watch the show. I had a shop here in 2004 – I don’t think much has changed since then. Not a lot changes round here. My family had that shop for around 50 years.

“I knew Froggy quite well. We used to get on, actually, I would see him a lot. Me and him were always alright with each other.”



Roger Lancashire pictured in Annesley Woodhouse
Roger Lancashire pictured in Annesley Woodhouse

While some didn’t get round to watching it, others made a conscious effort not to, as it was simply too painful to put themselves through. One woman, who wanted to remain anonymous, told Nottinghamshire Live: “I didn’t watch it – I couldn’t watch it, to be honest. It would have brought back too many memories, it would have been difficult to watch. My husband was a local bobby back then when it all happened. I went to London to see my friends over the weekend and they said it was a really good drama.”

John Graham, 58, was out walking his dog through woodland near the village – which was such an important part of the show. He said: “I did watch it, yes, I really enjoyed it actually. I thought they did a very good job, it was very entertaining. I come around here because it’s quiet – it’s basically just an industrial estate with a lovely walking route.

“I think for people like me who didn’t live here at that time it’s good because we know a bit more about it now. It felt like a proper, gritty drama. I read up a bit more about what actually happened after watching the show, so did my wife. I would recommend it to anyone who hasn’t seen it.”

As well as the murders, the show focused on how the village’s history is still prevalent years later – with some miners choosing to strike while others crossed the picket line to work. One man, who had lived in the village for more than 20 years, said: “I think it’s important that we don’t focus too much on it, to be honest. That doesn’t define us – I mean the murder and everything with the mining. This village has a great community feel and hopefully a great future. But, I think the show definitely did a good job of shining a light on what happened. It’s hard to forget things like that, especially in small places like this.”



Woodland near the village of Annesley Woodhouse
Woodland near the village of Annesley Woodhouse

Court proceedings after Robert Boyer was captured by police detailed that Mr Frogson’s death had nothing to do with the mining strike – instead coming from a fixation on Boyer’s behalf, with the killer wrongly thinking Frogson was ‘out to get him’, which was not the case.

Prosecutors abandoned a murder charge after a mental assessment and Boyer instead pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of Frogson at Nottingham Crown Court. He was sent to jail then given an indefinite hospital order.

Terry Rodgers admitted the manslaughter of Chanel on the grounds of diminished responsibility, but denied murder. Prosecutors refused to accept his plea and he was due to stand trial for murder on March 6, 2006.

However, in November 2004, while on remand at Lincoln Prison, Rodgers was placed on suicide watch. After refusing to eat for two years, he died at Lincoln County Hospital on February 25, 2006, aged 57.

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Written by: thehitnetwork

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