Is This Town a true story? This is what inspired the new drama from the creator of Peaky Blinders

 Is This Town a true story? This Town BBC.
Is This Town a true story? This Town BBC.

This Town is a new BBC drama from Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight, which tells the story of a community in the Midlands and Birmingham who are drawn into an emerging music scene. The plot centres on Dante Williams, an aspiring poet who starts to set his words to music and explores the social issues of the time, such as structural racism and political unrest. 

British TV drama This Town premiered on Sunday 31 March at 9pm, with the second episode scheduled for Monday 1 April, and following episodes scheduled for Sunday evenings. The cast includes Downton Abbey's Michelle Dockery, as well as Levi Brown, Jordan Bolger, Ben Rose, Eve Austin and Nicholas Pinnock.

So far, the show has been well received by critics, with The Guardian calling it 'bold' and 'brilliant' TV, and The Independent praises Steven Knight's 'deeply personal' narrative. But is it a fit for our pick of the best British crime dramas? This is everything we know about what inspired This Town...

Is This Town a true story?

No, This Town isn't based on a true story, with the characters depicted all entirely fictional. However, events within the plot of the series, such as the Handsworth riots in 1981, did happen, rooting the plot lines in reality.

Producer Steven Knight also drew from his own experiences growing up in the '80s in Birmingham and the Midlands, explaining (via Birmingham Live), "All the stuff in it that's most weird is the most true, like the bit with the spacesuit was real."

Steven Knight further explained the inspiration behind the series, commenting (via Radio Times), "The setting and backdrop for This Town is 1981, Birmingham and Coventry. '81 was a time of turmoil and change in every sense - in society, in politics, but in music as well. This series opens with a riot and I hope the sense of 'riot' continues throughout the whole thing.

"The riot was a real thing, it happened in Handsworth, Birmingham, and I’ve used that to introduce four very different characters who will come together. You might say it’s about music or it’s about people who are drawn to a certain type of music, but I’ve tried not to do that.

"I didn’t really want to do a thing about people who form a band, which is part of what it is, I wanted to create a group people who have no choice other than to form a band because all the other options are so bleak."

Is there a trailer for This Town?

Yes, you can watch the trailer for This Town below.

Stream all six episodes of This Town on BBC iPlayer now.