If you grew up in the UK between 2006-2015 the chances are that you would have heard of a TV show called Waterloo Road. The show was about a comprehensive school which had its fair ordeal of drama, with episodes mainly focusing on dramas surrounding the lives of pupils and teachers within the school. If you had followed the show throughout its full timeline you will have remembered that in the beginning of series 8 the show moved from Rochdale greater Manchester to Greenock Scotland, with the final Rochdale episode being series 7 episode 30.
Originally, the episode aired on BBC had never intended to be the finale of series 7, another episode had originally been produced but never aired due to it being deemed "too dark" for public viewing by BBC Scotland. The episode was leaked onto Dailymotion a few days after the known finale of series 7 had aired in April of 2012, I had been one of 50 people unfortunate enough to have seen the episode. Even to this day I wish I hadn't bothered to watch it, after what I had seen.
Before the episode had even started things were already looking off in the intro, everything seemed normal, except for the clips of teachers missing, only close up clips of the students and tables spelling "WATERLOO ROAD" were seen, except this time the clips were extended to cut out those showing the teachers. When the intro ended there was a 10 second blacked out screen before the episode finally began.
Everything appears to be normal; students are seen hanging round in the schoolyard before registration, with teachers entering the car park and going in towards the staffroom. The regular backing tracks can be heard. It then cuts to the first main scene in the staffroom, where Tom Clarkson is seen reading the newspaper. No one else is in the staff room but him which seemed a bit off. Grantly and Chalky then walk in, talking casually, greet Tom with a friendly "Morning tom!" before Tom starts waving the newspaper at them threatening them about how the school is in jeopardy of closure. Both Grantly and Chalky's faces drop into a look of dismay as the camera focuses on them for a further 5 seconds.
Michael along with the rest of staff enter the staffroom, before the episode focuses on the other storyline, where Finn is seen with Trudi in registration, deep in conversation when the camera focuses on Tariq in the background staring coldly at the couple, before walking along the corridor, violently pulling the arm of Emily, his ex girlfriend. What made this disturbing is that she can be heard begging Tariq to let her go and crying as Tariq is hurting her. Tariq keeps telling her to be quiet. He then meets up with Kyle Stack and the two are then seen leaving the school building.
The episode then re-focuses on the staffroom where Michael Byrne announces that he is under scrutiny of the school closing due to poor security. He announces he will be firing teachers in order to reduce the payroll and pay for the security of the school, Grantly being one of these teachers. Grantly then reacts by confronting Michael, yelling at him, warning that he will have his union back him up and that he would get Michael fired. Tom is then heard whispering to Matt Wilding "Even Jack wasn't this shit, my fiancé died because of him, don't forget.". Michael is then in focus, where he appears stressed and anxious.
We then see a couple of kids from the school chucking rocks at one another when one accidentally throws one and hits a propane bottle. Then a hissing sound is heard, and the boys are heard yelling "Oh flaming hell!" before darting off away for safety. The bottle then explodes and a fire breaks out in the canteen, spreading rapidly. These boys aren't seen again. I assume they escape the premises before they get caught. Finn and Josh are the first to notice the fire and sound the fire alarm. Students and teachers are then seen flooding the school corridors, running for their lives only to find that most of the exit doors are jammed and they can't escape. The next 5 minutes or so of the episode are spent showing numerous attempts for the doors to be opened, with everyone frantically trying to find ways to open the doors. Eventually one opens, and students are seen flooding out coughing and crying, Finn, Josh, even Kyle and Tariq are all seen working together to try and help people escape the burning building.
Throughout the last ten minutes since the fire started, all that can be heard are screams coming from inside the building, as well as other random distorted audio. I could make out some of it to be voices, although I couldn't make out whose voices they were specifically. There are also short scenes playing throughout this time of certain parts of the school burning down, such as the staff room, the headteachers office and secretary area, the cooler, and various classrooms and the school hall. There are also a few camera still scenes of the school corridors where we see students fleeing the building in fear.
As people escape, Em is seen again, standing in the flames. She grabs Scout by the arm. Scout looks back at her looking all freaked out.
"Em what are you doing?" she exclaims as she tries to free herself, Em sinisterly looks at her friend and calmly says "I've already lost one sister, I'm not being drifted apart from another one."
Before Scout can free herself, a pile of debris falls in front of them, blocking their way. We then see Phoenix turn his back in shock, and charges towards them to try help before he is then rugby tackled to safety by Michael. Phoenix then lashes out at Michael before Michael calmly tells him, "There's nothing we can do now, they wanted to be left there and no one can save them in time, I'm so sorry Phoenix."
Denzil Kelly is then seen outside with her mother Rose and Tom Clarkson, hugging her tightly, crying whilst they watch the school burn. Tom realizes then that Josh is still inside the school building and charges towards it to try save him. Before he can enter, he is held back by two of the firefighters, as well as Jez Diamond. The camera is then positioned behind the school gates, where it shows the school building burning whilst the firefighters try to tackle the fire, whilst students and teachers looked on, whilst the scene then slowly fades away to a blacked out screen.
The episode then cuts to Phoenix mourning over a picture of Scout, who I'm guessing never survived, whilst being comforted by Denzil and his younger brother Harley. It then cuts to Tom Clarkson mourning over a picture of his son Josh, as well as pictures of his past romances, Lorna Dickey and Izzie Redpath, who both died in season 2 of the show. Pictures of his ward children Chlo and Mika are also seen. The audio is distorted and you can hear voices once again. This time I could recognize a few. They turned out to be quotes of past characters, one of which I recognized as Jack Rimmer's and another as Maxine Barlow's. We then see Tom crying on the bed yelling, "Why do I lose everyone I love? What have I ever done?"
He takes a long swig of beer before yelling again "Is this the punishment for how I treated Lorna? God I'm sorry!"
In a dark room, we see Tom putting his head through a noose before hanging from the ceiling. This scene lasts for around 15 seconds before slowly fading to black. The episode then ends and the credits roll as if it was just any other episode...
I could not, and never have been able to look at the show the same way again, what I had seen was way too disturbing, and dark, shortly after the episode was removed from Dailymotion, and since then no more evidence of the episode's existence has ever been heard of.