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Midsomer producer 'will step down'

The producer of Midsomer Murders who sparked a race row has apologised and will step down from the show after "the current production run".

Production company All3Media launched an internal investigation after the publication of Brian True-May's comments that part of the show's appeal was an absence of ethnic minorities.

A statement on its website said: "Brian True-May has been reinstated as the producer of Midsomer Murders. Brian apologises if his remarks gave unintended offence to any viewers."

An ITV spokesman said: "We welcome the apology from Brian True-May and understand that he will step down from his role on Midsomer Murders at the end of the current production run."

Mr True-May told the Radio Times that the ITV1 programme - which have run for 14 series - "wouldn't work" if there was any racial diversity in the village life.

He said: "We just don't have ethnic minorities involved. Because it wouldn't be the English village with them. It just wouldn't work.

"Suddenly we might be in Slough. Ironically, Causton (one of the main centres of population in the show) is supposed to be Slough. And if you went into Slough you wouldn't see a white face there.

"We're the last bastion of Englishness and I want to keep it that way."

Midsomer Murders, based on the books by Caroline Graham, was launched in 1997 and has featured 251 deaths, 222 of which were murders.

Mirroring the way the programme, which is broadcast to 231 territories around the world, avoids portraying racial variation, it has been found that ethnic minorities apparently avoid the show. A study in 2006 found that Midsomer Murders was "strikingly unpopular" with minorities.

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