There's an article in Media Guardian which seems to require registration so I've borrowed the pertinent details:
Martin Shaw, star of the BBC1 series Judge John Deed, may be preparing to hang up his wig and take on a major new BBC drama role - that of 1950s East Anglian copper, George Gently.I'd better get my bibliography ready on the Euro Crime website!
The BBC has commissioned drama specialist Company Pictures to develop a series based on the books by Alan Hunter, who died in February last year.
The series has not yet been commissioned, but is almost certain soon to be given the go-ahead on BBC1.
A senior BBC source said: "Martin Shaw is very keen to do this new drama, and if it gets the green light, which is very likely, Judge John Deed will undoubtedly come to an end."
Judge John Deed is made by the corporation's in-house drama department.
Shaw has been optioned to play the chief inspector, who featured in 48 novels Hunter wrote between 1955 and 1999.
The character's name was used in 32 of the books' titles, such as Gently Does it and Landed Gently.
The character of Gently has been likened to that of George Simenon's Inspector Maigret, who was the subject of an ITV adaptation in the early 1990s starring Michael Gambon.
Most of Hunter's novels were inspired by, and set in, his native East Anglia, which is also Shaw's home. In the 1977 novel Gently Instrumental, for example, the chief inspector is called to a music festival, modelled on the Benjamin Britten festival of Aldeburgh in Suffolk, where a clarinettist is found murdered after flouncing out of a rehearsal.
Gently is also said to resemble the author. Both smoked a pipe.
In addition, Brian Cooper writes a series (9 so far) about two policeman in 1940s East Anglia. I reviewed The Norfolk Triangle a few years ago but wasn't terribly impressed.