Minder is a British comedy-drama about the London criminal underworld. Initially produced by Verity Lambert, it was made by Euston Films, a subsidiary of Thames Television and shown on ITV (originally by Thames, then Central Independent Television in 1993 and 1994 after Thames lost its franchise). The original show ran for ten series between 29 October 1979 and 10 March 1994, and starred Dennis Waterman as Terry McCann, an honest and likable bodyguard (minder in London slang) and George Cole as Arthur Daley, a socially ambitious, but highly unscrupulous importer-exporter, wholesaler, used-car salesman and purveyor of anything else from which there was money to be made, whether within the law or not.
The series is principally set in inner West London (Shepherd's Bush/Ladbroke Grove/Fulham/Acton), and was largely responsible for putting the word minder, meaning personal bodyguard, into the UK popular lexicon. The characters often drank at the local members-only Winchester Club, where owner and barman Dave (Glynn Edwards) acted, often unwillingly, as a message machine for Arthur, and turned a blind eye to his shady deals. The series was notable for using a range of leading British actors, as well as many up-and-coming performers before they hit the big time; at its peak it was one of ITV's biggest ratings winners.
In 2008, it was announced that Minder would go into production for broadcast in 2009 (on Channel 5) for a new version, though none of the original cast would appear in the new episodes. The new show focused on Arthur's nephew Archie (created solely for this new version), played by Shane Richie. The series began broadcast on 4 February 2009. In 2010, it was announced that no further episodes would be made following lukewarm reception to the first series.