BBC Radio 4, 5 March 2013
Newly-promoted police detective Maxine Boyd (Chloe Howman) is
called to the house of her fellow-officer Dewhurst, who has apparently committed suicide. Although she rescues
him just in time, he passes away later on in hospital.
A routine investigation ensues, conducted by members of another police force, and
Boyd is called to testify. In the interests of discovering the truth - as she believes all detectives should
do - she investigates Dewhurst's background and motives, but discovers more than she bargained for.
Noble Cause Corruption offers a bleak picture of the contemporary police
force, whose officers affirm their loyalty to one another yet seem perfectly willing to offer one of their number
as a scapegoat, if it helps to protect their jobs. Corruption seems widespread; for many officers, it seems more
important not to investigate crimes too closely, for fear of disturbing the status quo. On the other hand,
most officers feel that their basic duties (to investigate crime and preserve the rule of law) have been inhibited by a series
of Acts of Parliament, as well as the influence of the CPS (Crown Prosecution Service). Their job-descriptions
have also changed; they seem to spend more time filling out forms, or answering to civilian managers, rather than fighting
Given these constraints, it seems that the CID officer's primary duty today
is to remain loyal to their team in the interests of survival. They can still solve crimes, but sometimes this task
might be done in the interests of keeping the statistics high: the more crimes they can appear to solve, the less
likely they are to be investigated by the government. By the end of Holy
Mountain's production, Boyd has been exposed to the harsh realities of police life - either accept these constraints
Noble Cause Corruption is a hard-hitting piece, performed with utter conviction
by a cast including Phil Wright, David Hartley, Damian Cooper and Nicholas Gleaves as Boyd's fellow-officers. The play
proves once again that the Afternoon Drama slot is perhaps one of the best outlets for listeners to find
out what life is really like in contemporary Britain.