The Bill is a British police procedural television series that was broadcast on the ITV network from 16 October 1984 until 31 August 2010. The programme originated from a one-off drama, entitled Woodentop, which was broadcast in August 1983. In its final year on air, The Bill was broadcast once a week, usually on Tuesdays or Thursdays, in a one-hour format. The programme focused on the lives and work of one shift of police officers, rather than on any particular aspect of police work. The Bill is the longest-running police procedural television series in the United Kingdom, and was among the longest-running of any British television series. The series was produced by Thames Television. The series name originated from "Old Bill", a slang term for the police. This was also Geoff McQueen's original title idea for the series, before he eventually decided on "The Bill".