17 episodes

Manor Rott, Grott & Snott, based in the beautiful area of the North York Moors, is a place no-one can leave. The Manor and the villages around are held by an enchantment no-one understands and a darkness intent on keeping them captive.
However, because of the effects of the darkness and enchantment, strange things happen and unexpected heroes emerge. Although, as you would expect, as well as unexpected heroes, there are also unexpected villains and it is sometimes difficult to tell who is good and who is bad.
In a series of exciting stories, the history of the enchantment and the battle to set the Manor and the villages free take place.
Meet characters like Sir Winefry, Scragg the cat, Horatio the Border Terror, The Baron, Eller Beck, Roseberry Topping, Thornton and more as you find yourself drawn into their strange world.

Horatio and the Story of the Manor Andrew Devis

    • Drama
    • 5.0, 1 Rating

Manor Rott, Grott & Snott, based in the beautiful area of the North York Moors, is a place no-one can leave. The Manor and the villages around are held by an enchantment no-one understands and a darkness intent on keeping them captive.
However, because of the effects of the darkness and enchantment, strange things happen and unexpected heroes emerge. Although, as you would expect, as well as unexpected heroes, there are also unexpected villains and it is sometimes difficult to tell who is good and who is bad.
In a series of exciting stories, the history of the enchantment and the battle to set the Manor and the villages free take place.
Meet characters like Sir Winefry, Scragg the cat, Horatio the Border Terror, The Baron, Eller Beck, Roseberry Topping, Thornton and more as you find yourself drawn into their strange world.

    Episode 17 - The Key

    Episode 17 - The Key

    Music: Majestic Nature by Craig Stuart Garfinkle


    Artwork by Steve English


    The script:


    Episode 17 - The Key


    As Scragg recovered her senses, she looked more closely at the two people in the attic with them. One, a hag-like creature, was holding something in her hand while kneeling in front of the dark and ghostly outline of a door. The other, who looked a bit of an oaf, was some way behind and had a furious expression on his face. Neither of the people had noticed their arrival or the two shadow dogs who seemed to be having a 'mad moment' - zooming around chasing each other.


    Apart from the kneeling hag, Winefry was the only one who wasn’t affected by what came next. As the hag held out what looked very much like the key they were searching for towards the dark keyhole in the door, everything in the attic seemed to slow down. Then a voice spoke - which was only heard by the woman and Winefry - apparently from the door itself.


    It said, ‘Beware how you place that key in my lock, for many have tried and have found no luck. For if by chance you get it wrong, this door will stay open and all blessing be gone. Yet if you get it right when you open this cell, then maybe, just maybe all things will go well.’


    The words sent cold shivers down Winefry from his cork to his toes. He could see what was happening but felt no power in himself do anything about it. He watched helplessly as the person blindly pushed the key into the lock, taking no notice of the warning she’d just received. Winefry could see the other person, a large man with a red face moving closer to the hag and saw her throw a worried glance in his direction.


    Then, time was released back to normal as the door violently burst open, smashing into the woman kneeling in front of it. It sent her flying across the attic like a rag-doll - only just missing the man.


    Then, darkness, like they had never seen before, erupted out from the doorway. It was more than just empty darkness. It was malicious, powerful, filled with hate and, as it shot out, it engulfed the surprised man. Winefry thought he saw dark hands reach out and grab the man, dragging him back inside the doorway. As the man entered the darkness, the door slammed shut with a mighty crash - flinging the key from the lock and shattering it into its component pieces.


    Winefry was horrified. When he'd seen the key, he'd assumed that this was the end of their quest, to simply take the key from these people and return home. But now the key parts were spread across the attic. It was hard to see where they’d landed as the light was so dim. All Winefry could see was the shank of the key which seemed to be evaporating into a dark mist. So, throwing caution to the wind, Winefry leapt for the shank and grabbed hold of it as tightly as he could. And, as he held it firmly, so it regained its integrity in his hands, the thin rope through the bow dangling down.


    Shouting across to Scragg, Winefry yelled at her to find the bits before they disappeared. But that was easier said than done. The lighting was terrible. Only the woman's oil lamp was left and was about as much use as a clotted-cream picnic basket. Scragg raced around, but each time she found a bit, it was too late as it evaporated into a vapour before she could grab it.


    Thinking she’d missed all the bits, Scragg returned to Winefry who was holding the shank as if it too was about to vanish. He gave her a hopeful look, but she shook her head, and his face fell. The task the Lady of Light had given them would take far longer now.


    The shadow border terriers still seemed to be playing, at least one of them did. Flannel’s shadow kept running up to them and then going away again. Both Winefry and Scragg ignored it at first, unsure what to do. But when it came up for the fifth or sixth time, Winefry and Scragg exchanged a glance and Scragg followed t

    • 14 min
    Episode 16 - Back to the Manor

    Episode 16 - Back to the Manor

    Music: Majestic Nature by Craig Stuart Garfinkle


    Artwork by Steve English


    The script:


    Episode 16 - Back to the Manor


    When Scragg eventually awoke, it was night, and a beautiful summers’ full moon shone gently down on them. It was probably a flower moon or a strawberry moon in May or June, but it was hard to tell as all they had to go by were the warmth and smell of the air and the appearance of the leaves on the trees.


    Scragg didn’t get up very quickly as she still felt exhausted from all the effort of spending who knew how long in that tunnel and then dragging Winefry out with her. At the thought of Winefry, Scragg was suddenly wide awake. What had happened to Winefry? He had seemed all but lifeless as she’d dragged him out. Sitting bolt upright, Scragg started to frantically search around for Winefry. Thankfully, she didn’t have to look far as the bottle was only a little way from her and lying on its side, probably having rolled there after falling out of the tunnel. Gently, Scragg rolled the bottle onto its back to get a closer look. Annoyingly, the bottle didn’t breathe in the same way animals did, so she couldn’t check for a pulse or for his chest rising and falling. So, she looked as closely as she could in the full moonlight at the label, to see what his face was doing.


    A wave of grateful thanks washed over Scragg as she saw the peaceful expression that filled the features drawn on the label. Gone were the hopelessness and the lines of deep anxiety. Instead, they had been replaced by a look of peace and strength, and a very distinct animation of the wine bottle’s drawn features that told her he was snoring!


    Winefry was going to be ok. It might take a while before he woke up, but he had survived, so Scragg relaxed a little. Then her tummy growled, and she realised how hungry she was. The vermin in the tunnel had been small, and few and far between so, feeling confident that Winefry would be safe to leave for a little while, she headed out to hunt for her tea or breakfast. Whichever meal it might be, it was needed.


    When Scragg returned having found much larger and tastier vermin to feast upon, Winefry had still not moved. But as she looked at him, he seemed more robust and healthier as the first rays of morning light flickered through the branches onto his label face. Scragg had been anxious about Winefry, not least because she’d never seen him eat. In fact, she had no idea if he ate at all! What had made it worse was that, while they’d been in the tunnel, Scragg had got the distinct impression that Winefry had been starving. But he didn’t look as if he was starving now. In fact, as the light played on his features, there was a faint impression of a smile.


    Then, as the light started to grow in strength, Scragg suddenly found herself on high alert. Something was wrong or different about this place. From the corner of her eye, she caught sight of things moving that shouldn’t have. Then, a moment later, Scragg leapt into the air and backwards in the way only cats can when startled by something unexpected. But there wasn’t anything there.


    Again, something caught Scragg’s eye, and she jumped as high, if not higher than before. What was going on? Then she saw it, a shadow moving away from her – but it didn’t seem to be attached to anything. A moment later, it disappeared into the mix of shadows of trees and bushes. Again, for a third time, Scragg jumped as if her life depended on it. But this time, as she looked at what had caught her eye, she couldn’t believe what she saw. It was a shadow of a dog but without the dog. Deliberately coming up to her and acting as if she could understand it, it seemed to be looking at her, while sitting down and wagging its tail!


    Now, one thing cats are known for is their curiosity. While Scragg was still on high alert, she was also very c

    • 18 min
    Episode 15 - Winefry & Scragg – The tunnel

    Episode 15 - Winefry & Scragg – The tunnel

    Music: Majestic Nature by Craig Stuart Garfinkle


    Artwork by Steve English


    The script:


    Episode 15 - Winefry & Scragg – The tunnel


    ‘I can’t see a thing!’ Winefry exclaimed as the cave wall finally closed, leaving them to only wonder at the fate of the screaming girl, the lady of light and the border terriers. Before adding in a panic, ‘Scragg? Scragg? Are you there?’


    ‘Yes, I’m here. Stop worrying. I’m trying to work out the best way to go,’ Scragg replied.


    ‘Work out what? I can’t see a thing. It’s pitch-black!’


    'Well, it's not pitch-black for me. Maybe it's my cat's eyes or …, or maybe it's the lady of light and what she said about seeing the light? Whatever it is, I can see enough to tell that we have options.’


    ‘Options? What do you mean options?’ Winefry was obviously rather flustered.


    Scragg gave a little sigh before explaining, ‘We can go one of seven ways as far as I can tell. Now be quiet a moment, I’m trying to make out the signs above the passageways.’


    Being silent in the darkness proved not to be one of Winefry’s skills as he started to ply Scragg with questions about what the signs looked like.


    The seven passageways had seven different signs, which they eventually realised related to an image of a special key drawn on the wall that had closed up behind them. Scragg might never have seen the image if she hadn't become so exasperated with Winefry’s constant questioning that she’d turned around to scream into her paws. When she did see it, she screamed anyway but more to wind Winefry up than anything.


    Eventually, she started to explain the image to Winefry. ‘It looks like a key of some sort, but instead of just one locky thing coming off the main shaft, it seems to have six.’


    Winefry was intrigued, even though he was most definitely not in his element when sitting in total darkness. Maybe it was the decades of being left in the eaves of the Manor that had done it, but darkness was something Winefry did not like!


    ‘Is there anything else about the key that looks unusual?’ he asked Scragg.


    ‘You mean apart from that fact that it has six locky things?’ Scragg responded a little rudely.


    Winefry ignored this and asked another question. ‘Well, if it has six lock-opening parts, it might be quite difficult to put into the keyhole and turn in the lock. Is there anything else you notice about it?’


    This was rather a good question, and Scragg felt a little ashamed of her previous outburst. So, rather sheepishly (although Winefry wouldn't know because of the apparent total darkness he was in), Scragg walked over to the image of the key and took a closer look.


    ‘Well, the shafty part is quite fat and has what look like 6 flat sides to it – what’s that a polygon or something?’


    ‘That would be a hexagon,’ Winefry answered without any emotion. ‘Anything else?’ he added.


    ‘A hexagon. Right,’ Scragg repeated. ‘So, this hexagon shaft seems to have little grooves around the locky parts – on each of the sides I can see. So, if I had to guess, it looks like the six locky or unlocky parts – what are they called by the way?’


    Again, without much emotion and without thinking about how he knew it, Winefry answered, 'It's called a 'bit,' and obviously this key has six bits that fit into the six grooves in the hexagonal shank. Is that what you were going to say?'


    Scragg nodded but then realised Winefry couldn’t see her and gave a rather huffish ‘Yes,’ before asking, ‘How do you know so much about keys anyway?’


    Winefry ignored her and instead asked, ‘The bow, what’s that like?’


    Silence. It seemed Scragg was getting a little frustrated with this new ‘game’ and didn’t want to play any more!


    So, with a small sigh, Winefry explained. ‘It’s usually a ring part at the other end of the shank o

    • 17 min
    Episode 14 - Interlude - The Origins of Darkness

    Episode 14 - Interlude - The Origins of Darkness

    Music: Majestic Nature by Craig Stuart Garfinkle


    Artwork by Steve English


    The script:


    Episode 14 – Interlude - Origins of Darkness 


    Before the madness and pain, a beautiful country house stood in the idyllic countryside of the North York Moors. There lived in that house a very fortunate family. Although, some would say that the blessing and good fortune were not of their own making. Instead, the blessing had found them and made its home there. Why it should do this, I can’t say for sure, but I suspect this happened because they neither sought after nor longed for it. Instead, they concentrated on loving each other and caring for those around them, being thankful for all they had. 


    So, beauty and bounty followed wherever they went, and everything they put their hands to succeeded and prospered, which led to more thankfulness and joy. And so, it seemed that from each generation, this fortune flowed to the next, as sons and daughter grew up learning to love and care, with gratitude for the blessings they received. They lived in peace, drinking in the beauty all around and happily sharing their good fortune generously with others. 


    Around the country house, small villages grew for workers who tended the estate. Their housing was modest but comfortable, and a step beyond what they could find elsewhere, for the Briggswaths were good people who looked after and valued their workers. 


    Beyond the villages, the Briggswaths built a large hall, which they used as a meeting place and church. Generations of Briggswaths and villagers were married there, worshipped and gave thanks for all they’d received.  


    The land of the Briggswath estate was incredibly productive. Orchards were plentiful and loaded down with fruit; animals grazed and multiplied; woodlands were well-managed for healthy supplies of timber; crops grew both in the fields and the many gardens and allotments of the villagers. This part of Yorkshire really did seem to be ‘God’s own county’!  


    The lord and lady of the house at this time had four children, three girls and a much younger boy. All of them were exceptionally good looking, and before the boy was very old, his three sisters married and moved away, leaving him as the last child in the rambling country house. His name was Lealholm Warn Briggswath. 


    Page Break 


    However, Leal, as he was known, was not like the rest of his family. Right from the start, he was spoilt, indulged and never disciplined for behaviour his sisters would never have got away with! So, Leal learnt how to manipulate his parents to get whatever he wanted. He perfected tantrums and grumpiness; he became a master at lying – no matter what it cost other people – as long as it got him what he wanted. To your face, he was about as charming and lovely as you could imagine, until that is, he had what he wanted or decided you were no longer of use to him. Then, you were at his mercy. This was especially true for his parents as they grew older and frailer – suspiciously frail for their age.  


    It was during this time that the Briggswaths stopped meeting at the hall for church on a Sunday. Leal always felt very uncomfortable by what was said in that place. And so, when ill health prevented his parents from going, Leal did nothing to help them, preferring to stay away and make excuses. Whereas his parents had loved the villagers, Leal despised them, wanting nothing to do with them - except get their labour as cheaply as possible.   


    Then the time came, as was the way of things at that point in history, when Leal was expected to marry. And, while his parents seemed to be increasingly blind to his outrageous and selfish behaviour, the rest of the community was not. No family for many miles around would risk their daughter marrying someone like Leal. So, his parents looked further afield for a bride – but no

    • 22 min
    Episode 13 - The Beast

    Episode 13 - The Beast

    Music: Majestic Nature by Craig Stuart Garfinkle


    Artwork by Steve English


    The script:


    Episode 13 - The Beast


    Of the three villages, maybe, just maybe, Grott was the best one for the mad and raging beast Horatio to have gone. This was because Grott's enchantment was that, as full moon approached, every Grott villager descended into slime – as did nearly everything in the village of Grott. So, while Horatio could easily find the Grotts, it wouldn't be so easy for him to attack them. Put simply, by this point, the Grotts had decayed to little more than lumps of mucus.


    Strangely, the Grotts were actually better off than both the Rotts and the Snotts. You see, even as slimy mucus, they had somehow managed to work out how to slither around. The Snotts, on the other hand, were tiny by this stage. Being so small, it seemed unlikely the beast would be able to find them. However, if he did search them out, there wouldn't be any escape - remember, dogs have an incredible sense of smell. It was the Rott villagers who were in the greatest danger. As full moon approached, their disintegration accelerated until they were heaps of disconnected body parts with clouds of flies circling around them, easy pickings.


    As Eller entered the village, her heart sank. The beast Horatio was in the middle of the village square leaping from one lump of mucus to another. Each time he sniffed at the slime, it retreated slightly, but Eller's keen eyes had seen a problem. There was a Rott in the village square! You could tell by the pile of putrid pieces and the flies. But most of all, you could tell by the shimmering badge. It was Knayton Borrowby – everyone knew his badge. It read R – CAD, which he had told everyone stood for Caring and Delightful and, being Rott, Grott & Snott, everyone believed him!


    Cod had also seen Knayton and seemed to be attempting to get to him, to make some kind of defence against Horatio. But, every time Cod moved towards the rotting Knayton Borrowby, one or other of Knayton’s eyeballs would roll towards Cod and away from Horatio. As soon as one of the eyeballs looked in Cod’s direction, Cod turned to stone. Then, Horatio would move, Knayton's eye would roll back towards Horatio and Cod would quickly move towards Knayton. Poor Knayton didn't know where to look! His eyeballs pivoted from the terrible creature leaping around the village square, apparently intent on eating whatever it found, to a slightly more sinister one that was creeping towards him to do who knew what? Worst of all, because of his advanced state of decay, after a few moments, one of his eyeballs exploded with a little squelching sound, leaving only one eyeball rolling to see the terror coming his way.


    Just then, as the beast Horatio turned away from examining a foul-smelling Grott, the Baron lurched into the village. He arrived just in time to see the beast prick up its ears at the scent of the quickly rotting Knayton Borrowby. Eller saw the change in the beast Horatio, the look of hunger and the intense glowing of its green eyes, as it turned to stalk this new prey. Cod stopped dead, unable to help any more as he transmogrified into solid stone just beside Knayton, clearly visible to both Horatio and the Baron.


    As Eller watched, helpless to do anything, she felt the Baron run through her, trying to get to Knayton to save him. As he did, Eller felt him slow just slightly, although not enough for him to realise what was happening.


    The midnight hour was very close as the Baron rushed towards the monstrous beast Horatio. Then the beast leapt to attack what remained of Knayton. A scream of terror erupted from the rotting lump of humanity, causing lungs to explode and teeth to scatter all around the pile. But instead of landing on the jumbled assortment of bits that was Knayton, Horatio came crashing down just in front of him with the B

    • 21 min
    Episode 12 - DANGER!

    Episode 12 - DANGER!

    Music: Majestic Nature by Craig Stuart Garfinkle


    Artwork by Steve English


    The script:


    Episode 12 - DANGER!


    As Horatio Fleming McNaughtie, the Border Terror, swept from the Manor, the Baron's voice echoing behind him into the emptiness, Eller jumped as an unearthly howl made the windows rattle. Even the shadows, growing in the ever-increasing darkness, seemed to shift uncomfortably as if moved by a passing car headlight when no such light shone.


    Then the Baron had started to claw at everything in the kitchen, throwing things to the floor when he found them empty or containing something other than the special treats. But he was looking in the wrong place. The biscuits were gone, thrown down the rubbish shoot.


    The seriousness of the situation became even more evident when Roseberry, not known for her speed or agility, fairly bounded into the room, a questioning look on her face. Seeing the desperation of the Baron’s actions and the empty tin, she quickly caught on. 'I know I left plenty of them in there.'


    'Well, they aren’t there now!' There was panic in his eyes. 'I, I came to get the tin, the lid was off, and they weren't there. Look, it's empty.' He tossed the tin her way without looking up as he rifled through other tins in the hope they’d just been misplaced.


    Another terrifying, window-rattling howl made them jump. To Eller’s surprise, the Baron looked a little relieved. Then blowing out his cheeks, he added, 'At least he hasn’t gone straight to the villages. I know that means he's around here somewhere but I'd rather that than risk all those folk down there.'


    Risk the villagers? Was Horatio really that dangerous without these treats? She’d thought she was playing a simple trick to annoy the Baron and his mutt. The rising tide of panic inside her grew. This was obviously far more serious.


    Another howl, further away. What had she done?


    The screaming in Eller’s head that had been increasing since the moment Horatio ran out into the night, got to the point where it snapped her out of her stupor. If Roseberry and the Baron were this serious about those snacks, then the panic she felt shouldn't be ignored. She needed to make this right. But how? The biscuits were gone!


    She scanned the kitchen, now littered with tins and pots and lids, none of which contained any of the special treats. Then, her eyes landed on the rubbish shoot, and she saw it. Rushing forward to check, she realised what had happened. In her haste to throw the snacks down the rubbish shoot, one had somehow stuck to the side, just inside the entrance. It had almost gone down the shoot but was still there, just out of view. They were safe… but how was she going to show the others where the biscuit was?


    Again and again, she attempted to grab the last remaining snack from the rubbish shoot and, every time, she moved straight through it. As frustration rose, she started shrieking. Yelling at the Baron, at Roseberry, at herself - but no one heard her. It seemed that all she could do was listen to the howls moving around in the night and watch the others fighting down their own fear.


    It was Roseberry who spotted it. 'Archie!' she said, a strange hush to her voice. 'Look!'


    Eller was taken aback to hear the name of the Baron spoken out loud and turned to see what Roseberry was pointing at. The other two seemed to be looking at something directly above her head. It took a minuet to sink in, but then she understood. They could see her badge, although now they seemed confused, probably because Eller had turned around and it must have moved with her.


    Once she realised they were looking at her LOST badge, she flung her head into the rubbish shoot. She didn't go in too far, just enough to get the word LOST to gently make its way to the shoot entrance, bouncing slowly into place. It was a revolting place for her to put her f

    • 10 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
1 Rating

1 Rating

Crack Puffin ,

Very Enjoyable

I've listened to the first 4 episodes of this show with my children and they really enjoy the short episodes and the story.

It seems really good fun and whole hearted - well worth a listen.

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