Preview: Stonehouse

Matthew Macfadyen as John Stonehouse

Episode 3 of 3.

Concluding part of the extraordinary case of John Stonehouse the Labour MP and spy who, in 1974 hatched a plot to fake his own death and elope with his secretary, Sheila Buckley.

After being released on bail, the shamed MP moves back home. Barbara, his wife doesn’t trust him, but is desperate to keep the family together. Stonehouse tries to resist the urge to call Sheila, with contact being forbidden before and during the trial.

At the magistrate’s court, secret letters between the two are read. Barbara watches on from the gallery. The magistrate recommends the case go to the criminal court and, when Stonehouse gets home, Barbara has moved him into the spare room. He reminisces about simpler times, when he was a child in the Woodcraft Folk.

The Government’s situation is still precarious. Stonehouse has missed two votes in a week and delivers a controversial speech criticising the political status quo. Wilson reprimands him personally, in an unusually candid and bizarre exchange. Things go from bad to worse when he returns home to see Barbara watching Alexander Marek on TV, giving an interview that may implicate him and, after spending a night on a park bench, he succumbs to seeing Sheila.

When the case comes to trial, he elects to represent himself, despite the judge’s warning. This decision proves to be misguided and he is forced to confront his mistakes.


Wednesday at 9.00pm on ITV.

Image: ITV

More pick of the day content for Wednesday.