Peaky Blinders writer stunned by true history of gang’s ‘wild’ activities

Peaky Blinders: Steven Knight teases final season

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The final season of ‘Peaky Blinders’, which airs every Sunday, continues tonight on BBC One with Episode 3, ‘Gold’. The latest instalment of the Birmingham crime drama follows Tommy Shelby after he travelled to North America in the last episode. The gang leader, who is trying to expand into new territories, is convinced that his family has been cursed. He travels to a gypsy camp in a bid to find out who is responsible and how he can save his family.

In Birmingham, Tommy’s sister Ada Thorne takes charge and Arthur takes on some new recruits.

Arthur heads to Liverpool to deliver a warning, where he is met by Hayden Stagg, played by Stephen Graham.

An official picture from the programme shows the Liverpudlian ‘Line of Duty’ star’s character locked in an intense stare with Arthur.

‘Peaky Blinders’ creator Steven Knight, who was born in Birmingham, recently appeared stunned by the true history of Birmingham’s legendary crime gang.

The writer, who took his inspiration for the programme from extensive research, appeared in a recent documentary about the gang’s origins.

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Steven spoke during the first episode of the BBC’s two-parter, ‘The Real Peaky Blinders’, which aired earlier this week.

He said: “All of the characters – Darby Sabini, Alfie Solomons, Billy Kimber – came as a consequence of reading research about who was around.

“And just discovering the truth about them – the illegal gambling, the gangsters and all of that – it is so wildly more than you would expect it to be.

“Because, in the way that the Americans have mythologised their gangsters, the British have never ever even gone there.

“These people were not mythologised at all.

“And yet, they were the same people.”

‘Peaky Blinders’ has captured the nation’s attention since it first hit our screens in 2013.

The BAFTA Award-winning show is based on the real-life events of Birmingham’s notorious gangsters of the late Nineteenth Century.

The mobsters emerged from the grim poverty that dominated the Midlands city, which was once described by Charles Dickens as “a vision of hell”.

As depicted by the BBC drama, the gangsters were transformed from members of the slogger gangs into well-dressed, powerful mobsters.

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Steven learned of the Peaky Blinders from his mother and father’s memories of Birmingham and how gangs made money from gambling.

The writer opened up about his inspiration for the series in ‘The Real Peaky Blinders’.

He said: “My dad was the main source of stories about the Peaky Blinders.

“The story my dad told that really made me want to tell this as a drama, is that he was probably eight years old, and his dad gave him a message and said take these to the Peaky Blinders.

“He was terrified. He walked in and he said inside there were eight men, immaculately dressed, a table covered in coins in a place where no one had any money, and he said the men were all drinking beer and whisky out of jam jars.

“They wouldn’t spend any of that money on something like a glass or a cup — every penny they had was spent on how they looked.

“It just made me think that in an environment where you have no control, you have no authority, everything is pretty grim, the only thing you can do is make yourself ‘the thing’.”

‘Peaky Blinders’ airs on BBC One tonight from 9pm-10pm.

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