House of Cards creator reveals rift with BBC over ‘insensitive’ Margaret Thatcher plot

House of Cards creator reveals rift with BBC over 'insensitive' Margaret Thatcher plot
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The third series of the American adaptation of House of Cards, which stars Kevin Spacey, will see the programme go in a different direction to the political trilogy on which it is based. Despite this, the House of Cards author Lord Dobbs is confident that he will be happier with the end product than he was with the BBC adaptation, which aired in the nineties.

Speaking to the Radio Times, Dobbs says that he fell out with the production team during the final series over their treatment of the death of Baroness Thatcher. Dobbs was so appalled by the BBC's changes to his political thriller that he asked for his name to be removed from the end credits.

'It bore so little resemblance to my book; in fact I don't think my book had anything to do with it. I started reading drafts about the funeral of Margaret Thatcher,  with 'how much better if she had gone by the bomb or by the bullet.' Having recently walked out of the ruins of the Grand [the Brighton hotel housing the 1984 Tory conference that was bombed by the IRA], I was rather sensitive and I thought it was not right.'

After Dobbs asked for his name to not be included, a senior executive told him he would never work for the BBC again.

However, things are looking up for the 66-year-old author. He is working on a Westminster thriller that the corporation have expressed an interest in. Mr S imagines that the huge success of House of Cards, on the online streaming site Netflix, will have helped the BBC to forget their previous threat.

Written bySteerpike

Steerpike is The Spectator's gossip columnist, serving up the latest tittle tattle from London and beyond. Email tips to