One of Peter Sutcliffe’s real-life victims watches as TV crew films Yorkshire Ripper drama on street where she lives
- Marcella Claxton, 66, survived Sutcliffe’s vicious attack in 1976 when she was 20
- Ripper hit her over the head. Ms Claxton lost a baby and needed brain surgery
- Today she looked on as an ITV crew shot a new drama about Sutcliffe’s killings
- Neighbour: ‘Imagine going for a walk & a film’s being made about your attacker.’
Published: | Updated:
A victim of Yorkshire Ripper Peter Sutcliffe, who murdered 13 women in a five-year killing spree, looked on as a TV crew shot a drama about him on her street in Leeds.
Marcella Claxton, 66, survived a violent ambush by Sutcliffe on her way home from a house party in May 1976. She was just 20.
Sutcliffe beat Ms Claxton over the head after mistaking her for a sex worker.
Left: Ms Claxton watches on as an ITV crew films a drama about the Yorkshire Ripper on her street in Leeds. Right: the Sutcliffe survivor, 66, confers with a security guard close to the set
Marcella Claxton (pictured as a young woman) survived a heinous attack by Peter Sutcliffe (right) five years before he was caught
She lost the baby she had been carrying for four months and needed brain surgery.
Ms Claxton also required more than 50 stitches, The Mirror reported.
Sutcliffe murdered 13 women and tried to kill seven more during a five-year killing spree between 1975 and 1980.
Locals in Chapeltown, north-east were taken aback that the crew is filming so close to Ms Claxton’s home.
Actors in costume film the upcoming ITV drama in Chapeltown, north-east Leeds today
Claxton looks torn as the crew films the upcoming series on her street in Leeds earlier on
Neighbour Mercy Brown, 48, said: ‘Imagine going for a walk in the streets where you live and seeing a film being made about your attacker’s crimes.’
Fellow resident Winston Campbell, 58, said: ‘Seeing the actors brought those days back to me. It was very scary times around here.
‘I hope they do the victims justice and treat them with respect.’
The ITV series stars ex-Corrie actress and Night Manager star Katherine Kelly.
Some of the notorious murderer’s victims and their families reportedly cooperated in the making of the show.
Ms Claxton, who continues to get headaches and dizzy spells nearly 50 years after her attempted murder, said after the Ripper’s death in 2020: ‘I’m happy he’s gone.
Actress Charley Webb (in police uniform) stars in the series. She is pictured talking to a crew member and an extra who is playing a sex worker
Charley Webb played Debbie Dingle on Emmerdale from 2002 to 2021
‘At least now I may be able to get some closure.’
ITV commissioned the drama after the success of true crime shows Des and White House Farm.
The Yorkshire Ripper was jailed for 20 years in 1981, with the sentence converted to a whole-life order in 2010.
Police interviewed him no fewer than nine times during their five-year investigation.
Twelve of Sutcliffe’s 13 victims. Top row (left to right): Wilma McCann, Emily Jackson, Irene Richardson and Patricia Atkinson. Middle row: Jayne McDonald, Jean Jordan, Yvonne Pearson and Helen Rytka. Bottom row: Vera Millward, Josephine Whitaker, Barbara Leach and Jacqueline Hill
Chapeltown, Leeds was chosen for a location of the series as it has period-appropriate houses
He often used the services of sex workers in Leeds and Bradford, targeting them.
Sutcliffe was finally pinched by police in Sheffield in 1981 for driving with false number plates.
At that point he confessed to the killings – and claimed the voice of God ordered him to commit them.
He died of Covid in prison in November 2020 aged 74.
Katherine Kenny plays Emily Jackson, Sutcliffe’s second murder victim, in the new ITV series
Yorkshire police are pictured searching for Wilma McCann, the Ripper’s first victim, in 1975