Skip to main contentSkip to footer

Hollington Drive: Is it based on a true story?

How much of the story is based on true events?

hollington drive new
Nicky Morris
TV and film writer
Share this:

Hollington Drive is the new four-part drama from ITV which follows two sisters, Theresa and Helen, whose lives are thrown into tragedy when a local boy goes missing - but how much of it is based on a true story?

MORE: Viewers unimpressed after spotting blunder in ITV's Hollington Drive

For those who have yet to watch the compelling drama, the sisters - played by Anna Maxwell Martin and Rachael Stirling - must cope with the truth of what happened when they suspect their own children might have been involved in something terrible. 

WATCH: Have you caught up on ITV's new drama?

The series is written by British screenwriter Sophie Petzal, who is best known for creating the Irish crime drama Blood which stars Line of Duty’s Adrian Dunbar, and although it is not based on true events, Sophie took inspiration from real family dynamics when writing the show. She told ITV: "I’m obsessed with family dynamics. 

I should say that me and my sister have a very different relationship to Helen and Theresa! But, of course, you take things from your own experiences all the time, things like childhood dynamics that live on into adulthood."

MORE: A Place in the Sun’s Jonnie Irwin shares sweet milestone for his twin boys in an adorable post

MORE: BBC breaks silence over Steve Coogan's Jimmy Savile drama backlash

hollingotn drive two kids in woods© Photo: ITV

Two sisters must cope when tragedy strikes

Sophie was inspired by her previous work on Blood to continue to write "authentic, personal, family-based stories". She told the Radio Times: "I found that that was such a rewarding way to centre a thriller. I also happened at the time to be thinking about sisterhood. I’m a twin and that’s one of the most valuable relationships in my life.

"So I came up with an idea about two sisters who live very co-dependent lives, who live very close to one another, who are in one another’s pockets. And then they discover their two children may have been involved in something terrible, and they decide to keep it a secret which leads to an ever-spiralling conspiracy of stress and secrets and lies."

anna maxwell martin looking serious© Photo: ITV

Anna Maxwell Martin plays Theresa

Interested in finding out more? The official synopsis reads: "On a Summer evening in the seemingly idyllic suburb of Hollington Drive, ten-year-old Alex Boyd is declared missing. Sisters and social pillars within the community, Theresa and Helen, struggle to hold their lives and their families together in the wake of this tragedy. Secrets and lies begin to surface and long held facades falter as grief rips through Hollington Drive."

Like this story? Sign up to our newsletter to get other stories like this delivered straight to your inbox.