BBC One drama set during 1948 'austerity Olympics'

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Richard Burnell and Bertram Bushnell winning the Olympic double sculls at Henley on Thames in 1948.
Image caption,
Bertram Bushnell and Richard Burnell won the Olympic double sculls at Henley-on-Thames.

A drama about two British rowers who won gold at the London 1948 Olympics is part of BBC One's offering for 2012.

Bert and Dickie, written by William Ivory is set in the run-up to the "austerity Games" held three years after the war, and tells the story of Bertram Bushnell and Richard Burnell.

The pair won gold in double sculls, despite only having been partnered six weeks before the Olympic races began.

The 90-minute production is part of 25 hours of new BBC One drama.

It will also explore how London coped with staging the first post-war Games with rationing still in place.

Controller of drama commissioning Ben Stephenson said that next year "will be a year of huge cultural significance".

He added: "BBC One Drama promises to match that ambition by bringing audiences stories with real scale that connect with the hearts and lives of British people".

Also in the pipeline is Restless, a two-part adaptation by author William Boyd of his own novel about a young woman who discovers her mother was a spy in World War II.

Boyd's Any Human Heart won the best drama serial Bafta at the weekend.

Other commissions include Savage - a series about a young Liverpool police officer who witnesses the murder of his best friend and May Day - a five part thriller about what happens in a neighbourhood when a young girl goes missing.

Danny Cohen, controller of BBC One, said: "Drama is a defining genre for BBC One and these new commissions reflect the quality, range and ambition we have for our programmes."

The Cultural Olympiad - a host of arts events associated with London 2012's Olympic Games - is already under way but will build up steam ahead of the opening ceremony on 27 July.

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