Detectorists Christmas special 2022: release date, cast, plot, and everything we know

Detectorists Christmas special 2022 Andy and Lance
(Image credit: BBC/Channel X/Kevin Baker)

The Detectorists Christmas special 2022 sees Mackenzie Crook bringing back his band of popular treasure hunters.

The feature-length adventure is the first episode of the BAFTA-winning comedy, which Mackenzie writes, directs and stars in, for five years.

Asked why he's revisiting the show now, Mackenzie says: "I wouldn't do anymore unless I thought of a good story and I think I did a good story".

Mackenzie is back as Andy alongside Toby Jones as Lance. Speaking about what Toby Jones brings to the show as Lance, Mackenzie says: "He's extraordinary. He trained at Ecole Internationale de Theatre Jacques Lecoq in Paris, which is a famous clown school. You can see he's such a great physical comedian and he's one of the funniest guys I've met."

Here's everything we know...

Detectorists Christmas special 2022 release date

The Detectorists Christmas special 2022 is released on Boxing Day at 9 pm on BBC Two. It will also be available to watch on iPlayer. See our Christmas TV guide for more shows to enjoy.

What's the plot?

Andy, Lance and the rest of the Danebury Metal Detecting Club have to unearth a precious relic to raise funds to prevent their meeting hall from being knocked down by developers. But Lance risks everything that's dear to him when he keeps quiet about a mysterious treasure he finds...

"I don't think Lance is thinking of lining his own pockets," explains Mackenzie, 51. "He just wants to discover all that history himself. I used to get really jealous watching Time Team. I wanted to be there. Somebody finding something fantastic  didn't give me any joy; I was just jealous."

As to the future of the show and if there will be any more specials, Mackenzie adds: "I've never planned ahead with Detectorists. Maybe there is something else to be done at some point. I'm not going to rule it out completely, but I don't want to 'jump the shark,' if I haven't already."

Is there a trailer?

No, sadly not yet.

David Hollingsworth

David is the What To Watch Editor and has over 20 years of experience in television journalism. He is currently writing about the latest television and film news for What To Watch.


Before working for What To Watch, David spent many years on TV Times magazine, interviewing some of television's most famous stars including Hollywood actor Kiefer Sutherland, singer Lionel Richie and wildlife legend Sir David Attenborough. 


David started out as a writer on TV Times before becoming the title's deputy features editor and then features editor. During his time on TV Times, David also helped run the annual TV Times Awards. David is a huge Death in Paradise fan, although he's still failed to solve a case before the show's detective! He also loves James Bond and controversially thinks that Timothy Dalton was an excellent 007.


Other than watching and writing about telly, David loves playing cricket, going to the cinema, trying to improve his tennis and chasing about after his kids!