Scots uni to launch Taggart archive to mark show's 40th anniversary

Retired detectives will take witness statements from past extras for the archive at Glasgow Caledonian University.

Glasgow Caledonian University to launch Taggart archive to mark show’s 40th anniversary STV via Taggart

A Scottish university has announced plans to launch an archive to celebrate one of the world’s longest running police dramas.

Taggart, which ran on STV for 28 years, is marking its 40th anniversary and in celebration, Glasgow Caledonian University is urging people to share their stories of working on the programme. 

Retired detectives will take witness statements at a mock police station at the university’s Alex Ferguson Library from past extras – from those who played corpses to those who offered their homes for filming during the show’s run. 

Some of the contributions will be added to display boards and maps in an ‘incident room’ set up on campus. 

Those interested in participating may also have the chance to meet DI Jackie Reid, played by Scots actress Blythe Duff. 

In 2018, Duff donated scripts from all of the Taggart episodes she starred in, as well as photographs, press cuttings and memorabilia.

A selection of these will be on display during the drop-in sessions.

Duff, who is an honorary graduate and cultural fellow of the university, said: “Everyone I meet has a Taggart story, ‘Oh you filmed in my auntie’s house’ or ‘in our street’, or ‘I was an extra for the day’.

“I’ve worked with so many people who watched us film and it inspired them to become directors, writers or join the police.

“It made me realise how important these stories are to the fabric of the series.”

Carole McCallum, archivist at Glasgow Caledonian University, said: “What better way is there to give Glasgow – and Scotland – a voice in the Taggart story than through the people who loved and supported it?

“Giving people the chance to add their stories to the programme’s legacy ensures they too have ownership of Taggart’s proud heritage. It also gives us a chance to break barriers and show that archives are for everyone.

“Blythe’s vision is completely aligned with our ethos so we are delighted she has chosen us as her partner in the creation of this people’s archive.

“We are interested in every story, big and small, but our success in creating this new collection depends on people coming forward. Don’t be shy – step forward as a witness so current and future generations better understand this iconic crime drama.”

Sarah Brown, creative director of drama at STV, said: “We’re so proud of Taggart and the legacy the series has left behind after 28 years on air.

“The show was a rich training ground for so many production crew, writers and actors in Scotland who have gone on to have successful careers in television; and the storylines, characters and murders continue to be watched by fans all around the world.

“We’re thrilled that Glasgow Caledonian University is launching its special Taggart archive on its 40th anniversary and can’t wait to hear people’s stories of how the drama impacted their lives.”

STV News is now on WhatsApp

Get all the latest news from around the country

Follow STV News
Follow STV News on WhatsApp

Scan the QR code on your mobile device for all the latest news from around the country

WhatsApp channel QR Code