The Long Call
Based onThe Long Call
by Ann Cleeves
Developed byKelly Jones
Directed byLee Haven Jones
Music bySamuel Sim
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons1
No. of episodes4
Executive producers
  • Kelly Jones
  • Kate Bartlett
ProducerAngie Daniell
CinematographyBjørn Ståle Bratberg
Production companySilverprint Pictures
Original release
Release25 October (2021-10-25) –
28 October 2021 (2021-10-28)

The Long Call is a British crime drama television series developed by Kelly Jones and Silverprint Pictures based on the 2019 novel of the same name by Ann Cleeves. It premiered on ITV in the United Kingdom on 25 October 2021 and was released internationally as a BritBox original following broadcast.[1]


The series follows Detective Inspector Matthew Venn as he returns to his hometown in Devon with his husband for his religious father's funeral, only to find himself investigating a local murder.





Title Directed by Written by Original air date
11"Two Rivers"Lee Haven JonesKelly Jones25 October 2021 (2021-10-25)
Matthew Venn returns to his hometown in Devon, with his husband Jonathan Roberts, to attend his father’s funeral. While there, he is put in charge of the investigation into the murder of forty year old Simon Walden, whose body was found on the beach. After it’s discovered that his name was spelled wrong, Venn and his team discover that Walden was responsible for an accident where a child died. They also discover that the child’s mother had been seeing Walden, but didn’t have an affair. Venn attempts to reconcile with his mother after his father’s death, and visits priest Dennis Stephenson, who gives him his father’s bible. A friend of Venn’s mother, Ruth Shapland, reports her daughter Rosa missing, and during questioning, reveals that Walden had started attending church meetings. The police receives an emergency call from Rosa, leaving Venn concluding that she has been kidnapped.
22"Church of the Brethren"Lee Haven JonesKelly Jones26 October 2021 (2021-10-26)
Venn and the police uncover a cabin which they suspect Rosa was kept in, with bloodstains being the only signs of her having been there. Further investigation into Walden reveals that he was in a relationship with Gaby Chadwell, but they eventually broke up. Caroline Reasley’s father, Christopher, attempts to have her take a two week vacation, and she reveals to Ed that he is manipulative. Venn’s mother Dorothy, reveals that she and his father kept a scrap book containing news articles during his career. Rosa is spotted in the woods near Lovecott and the police starts a search, which Jonathan joins. Rosa is hospitalised and the nurse determines that she has lost some of her memory. Caroline discovers a non-disclosure agreement between her father and Walden, and Venn’s team uncover CCTV footage that puts Christopher Reasley on their suspect list.
33"Woodyard"Lee Haven JonesKelly Jones27 October 2021 (2021-10-27)
Reasley is brought in for questioning about how he got 120 pounds from the Woodyard. Some of the money is revealed to have been taken by Walden in an attempt to save the Woodyard. Venn and Rafferty ask Rosa questions about what happened to her, but she claims that she is unable to remember. She is later baptised, and re-enters the church environment. Venn and his husband are visited by Dorothy. The police question Lucy, but she initially refuses to talk. Caroline confronts her father about the non-disclosure agreement between him and Walden, which is revealed to be related to an accusation against Ed Ravely for the sexual assault of Rosa. Rosa confides in Grace Stephenson and goes to the police to tell them what happened to her. Caroline meets Ed and agrees to help him leave the area, but upon returning home to pack the police arrive to arrest him.
44"Saint or Sinner"Lee Haven JonesKelly Jones28 October 2021 (2021-10-28)
During questioning, Ed confesses to rape, but denies having any involvement in Wolden’s murder. Grace Stephenson has conflicting thoughts about whether or not she wants help or keep going, ultimately deciding to talk to Venn about Dennis’ treatment of her. She is brought to the station for a formal statement and Dennis is arrested. He is later released due to lack of evidence and takes Grace home. Jonathan encourages Venn to put behind his shame of the past. Venn brings his mother into the investigation in order to gather more evidence against Dennis, leading to him telling her about his life after he left Devon. He confronts Dennis and attempts to look for Grace, but is knocked out by Dennis. He regains consciousness when Grace confronts Dennis with the knife used on Walden. Grace confesses to the murder, also telling about how Dennis controlled her, again landing him behind bars. Venn’s mother temporarily takes over the leadership at the church.


In November 2020, it was announced Silverprint Pictures would adapt Ann Cleeves' novel for ITV. Kelly Jones would pen the four-part drama as her first standalone series and third collaboration with Silverprint on a Cleeves adaptation, with Lee Haven Jones directing and Angie Daniell producing.[2]

Principal photography took place in 2020 on location in Bristol and the North Devon coast, particularly around the Taw and Torridge estuary. Matthew and Jonathan's house is located in Appledore. Actor Ben Aldridge grew up in the area.[3]



Year Award Category Recipient(s) Result Ref.
2022 GLAAD Media Awards Outstanding New TV Series The Long Call Nominated [4]


  1. ^ Julians, Joe (26 October 2021). "The Long Call on ITV: Release date, cast, trailer and latest news". RadioTimes. Retrieved 7 November 2021.
  2. ^ Kanter, Jake (17 November 2020). "'Vera' Producer Silverprint To Adapt Ann Cleeves Novel 'The Long Call' For ITV". Deadline. Retrieved 7 November 2021.
  3. ^ Morris, Lauren (26 October 2021). "The Long Call location guide: where was the ITV drama filmed?". Radio Times. Retrieved 7 November 2021.
  4. ^ "The Nominees for the 33rd Annual GLAAD Media Awards". GLAAD. 21 January 2022. Retrieved 22 January 2022.