‘All Creatures Great and Small’: Is the New PBS Series Based on a True Story?

All creatures Big and Small this may be the perfect comfort look for your Sunday nights. The new PBS series – which airs for January 10 – is set in 1937 and follows a recent graduate of a veterinary school and takes a new job in a small Yorkshire village with a number of unusual characters.

The series is based on a series of books by James Herriot, drawing on his own experience as a veterinarian in rural England to tell his stories. So what is reality and what is fiction All creatures Big and Small? Let’s take a look.

‘All Creatures Great and Small’ is based on the life of James Herriot himself

all creatures great and small
Helen Alderson (Rachel Shenton) and James Herriot (Nicholas Ralph) in All creatures Big and Small | Ed Miller Copyright: Teleyground Television (UK) Ltd.

Herriot – nicknamed James Alfred Wright – was born in Scotland in 1916. After graduating from Glasgow College of Medicine, he took up employment in Yorkshire. According to his obituary in the New York Times, began making notes of his experiences as a veterinarian, and then spun them into humorous stories that would form the basis of his books. All creatures Big and Small (a collection of three shorter books) published in 1972, when Herriot was in his mid-50s.

He changed the names of some of the characters

James Herriot
Author and veterinarian Dr. James Alfred Wight (pen name James Herriot) | Ian Cook / LIFE Photo Collection via Getty Images / Getty Images

Lean Herriot All creatures Big and Small le Everything bright and beautiful and All wise and wonderful. In his semi-autobiographical books, there is a character named James Herriot, based on the author. Many of the other characters are drawn from everyday life, but he gave them new names for the novels.

The real Herriot worked for a vet called Donald Sinclair, renamed Siegfried Farnon. Sinclair did not follow the attention that drew Herriot’s books to his life, according to the 1995 obituary in the New York Times. Sinclair’s brother Brian was turned into the character of Tristan Farnon. Helen of the books and exhibition was a local woman named Joan.

While the characters are based on real people, the new version has undergone some changes, respectively PBS. In particular, the female characters are more out there and Siegfried gets a more complex backing.

James Herriot’s family granted permission to ‘All Creatures Great and Small’

Herriot died in 1995, but his two children are still alive. Nicholas Ralph, who is making his first TV show as a Scottish veterinarian, said he was able to meet the family of Herriot, who were looking forward to the new series. (All creatures Big and Small was previously adapted into a 1975 film by Anthony Hopkins and a 90-program TV series that began airing in 1978.

“We met Rosie and Jim, Alf White’s son and daughter, before we read them,” Ralph said RadioTimes. “So, very early in the whole process. And they were just beautiful – they were excited, very enthusiastic about the new series, and they were engaging and had amazing stories. ”

All creatures Big and Small premieres Sunday, January 10 at 9pm ET on PBS, with new events appearing weekly. All available programs are offered on Passport PBS starting Jan. 10.

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