Only Fools and Horses

Only Fools and Horses icon Tessa Peake-Jones is unrecognisable in The Bill in the 80s

Away for her role as Raquel Turner, the actress also starred on the police drama during in 1980s

Tessa Peake-Jones is famed for playing Raquel Turner on Only Fools and Horses, but the actress has been in so many more popular TV shows including The Bill.

The 65-year-old first arrived on the ITV police drama in December 1988 only one day after she first appeared in the Dates Christmas special of Only Fools as Raquel Turner.

The episode titled Digging Up the Past follows the coppers from Sun Hill police station tasked with solving a mystery after an excavator on a building site uncovered some human remains.

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Tessa Peake-Jones as Sue in The Bill (Image: ITV)

Tessa plays a scene of crime officer called Sue who must find out where the skeletons have come from and if there was foul play, a much more serious role that we’re used to seeing the actress play during her time on Only Fools and Horses.

Forensic officer Sue is first seen when she pulls up to the crime scene in a rather small white police car and says: “Hello Viv, I hear you have some bones that need picking”.

A short while later, Tessa is seen again as she jumps down into a ditch to inspect the human remains and collect forensics. She then discovers the human remains belong to victims of the great plague.

One year later Tess re-appeared as forensic officer Sue in The Bill during series 5, in an episode called A Fair Appraisal. This episode sees the coppers trying to nail a drug dealer, and Sue is there to help gain evidence.

Tessa Peake-Jones in The Bill in 1988 (Image: ITV)

This episode was aired the same year Tessa returned to Only Fools and Horses for the Jolly Boys’ Outing in 1989 where she then became as a main character on the show as the partner to Del Boy Trotter (David Jason).

Aside from starring in The Bill and Only Fools, Tessa is also well-known for her role in Grantchester as Sylvia Chapman, the vicarage’s devoutly religious housekeeper, from the very beginning of the series.

She’s also starred in other popular TV series including Midsomer Murders, Holby City, Doctor Who, Doctors, Poirot, Casualty, Heatbeat, plus many more.

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