The Pallisers

Over 12 episodes, Greg Wise, David Troughton and Juliet Stevenson lead BBC Radio 4’s dramatisation of the Palliser novels by Anthony Trollope, written when he was at the height of his powers. First broadcast in 2008.

The Pallisers follows the fortunes of Phineas Finn (Conleth Hill), a young Irish barrister who wins a seat in Parliament, which introduces him to a London life full of temptations for a man of his attractions. Several society ladies swoon at his feet but he seems destined to be pipped at the post as a potential husband.

The characters are immediately recognisable and their stories are as gripping and as relevant as they were when they were first written, between 1864 and 1880.The central family is the Palliser dynasty, led by Plantaganet Palliser (Ben Miles), heir to the Duke of Omnium (Robert Lang). He marries the feisty Glencora (Sophie Thompson), who has been in love with the reckless Burgo Fitzgerald.The theme of dutiful marriage versus the temptations of passionate love runs through the novels. Glencora grows to love Plantaganet, in her own way, but never fully recovers from her first love.

Juliet Stevenson plays Lady Laura, Greg Wise plays Lopez, Adrian Lukis plays George Vavasor and Anastasia Hille plays Alice. David Troughton plays Trollope, who narrates the series.

The Pallisers is dramatised by Martyn Wade. Martyn and producer Cherry Cookson were the creative team behind the hugely successful radio version of The Barchester Chronicles.