A contemporary drama in a rural setting.
A contemporary drama in a rural setting.
Debbie has concerns over a family member while Brian’s plan gathers momentum
Alice is annoyed by Arun’s request to discuss a re-launch of GPS crop monitoring software. He was recently chosen over her for a promotion to manager. Meanwhile she’s waiting for a wine delivery to arrive. Alice rang Adam to ask for some cherries to make homebrew cherry brandy and hears about his picker problem. She thinks working for Pryce Baumann is a lot worse than struggling to find people for the cherry harvest. Then Adam asks her to ring round people in Ambridge to see if they will pick cherries.
Emma gives Alice short shrift about helping with the cherry harvest. Alice has only recruited Molly Button so far. Freddie’s unavailable and she doesn’t have Bert’s number. Her focus on finding pickers is interrupted by an email from the Pryce Baumann Managing Director.
Chris has had a commission off the back of the garden ornament he made for Harrison and Fallon’s wedding. Harrison’s friend Louis wants a tree sculpture for the birth of his baby. Chris thinks about the willow tree in the back garden at The Nest. Alice used to get Debbie to help her climb it until Jennifer found out. Chris decides on an oak tree for the commission.
Chris has a call from Alice and is amazed to hear that she’s quit her job. He thought she loved it but admits the office politics got her down. She sounded happier than he’s heard her in months. Meanwhile, Alice muses on what her MD said. He phoned to give her a pep talk. She doesn’t feel she’s being shown any respect so she’s taking her qualifications, expertise and contacts elsewhere.
Brian looks after Xander while Jennifer catches up on sleep. Xander stayed the night with them last night but he woke up a lot. Brian misses the Home Farm farmhouse and tells Xander that the Aldridges are a funny old bunch. He draws a parallel between Xander and Ian and himself and Debbie and Adam – even though they’re not biologically his children he loves them.
Adam is struggling to find enough people to pick cherries. He’s finding that UK-based people aren’t as reliable as Eastern Europeans. He doesn’t want to tell Brian about the picker problem. He reminisces about Brian’s affair with Siobhan and Jennifer agreeing to raise Ruairi.
Debbie comes off the phone with Elaine, Roger Travers-Macy’s wife. Roger has been recovering from coronavirus but has gone downhill again. Adam’s shocked to hear how badly Debbie's taking it but thinks she can’t expect much of him in her absence – he’s too busy with work and Xander. Debbie thinks Adam is being unfeeling in his lack of enthusiasm for getting in touch with Roger.
Hungover Susan’s appalled that she ended up with Tracy on her quiz team, but happy that some of her revision questions came up. She also managed to get one over on Jennifer with some Latin phrasing. As she drinks a hangover cure made up of what she can remember of Clarrie’s recipe, she recalls her tongue running away with her last night, and is glad she was muted for some of it. She knows she made a mistake when she let slip about Tracy’s ex on the radio. When she’s asked later to fill in the drivetime slot on Radio Borsetshire she says no in favour of calling Tracy, to put things right with her sister.
Tracy recalls Susan calling Jennifer a ‘snotty cow’ last night, and is proud she pitched in on her sister’s side; it’s the right thing to do. There’ll always be privilege in the village, and it makes it more important than ever for her to cling on to her status of cricket captain. Later Tracy recounts a phone call from Susan. They’ve had a long chat and put their heads together to come up with a text to Jennifer to smooth things over. Tracy recalls an incident over some shoes for Susan’s wedding years ago – she laughs that sisters give you grief, but you’ve got to love them. Susan also concludes she wouldn’t have Tracy any other way.
Delighted Freddie’s had success with his plumbing repair, and has found some nostalgic objects along the way. He enjoyed the quiz last night even though his team bombed. Having spotted Lynda on screen at the quiz, he finally replies to her letter, telling her how much Lower Loxley means to him now. He signs off ‘Love Freddie’.
Susan’s starting to panic about the upcoming quiz. She’s glad her team’s a family affair with Jennifer, and is looking forward to pitting her wits against Tracy’s cricket team. She relishes using her newly discovered rich vocabulary on her radio slot. But as evening approaches and her show comes to an end, the nerves kick in. She has a drink to calm herself, which only makes her more confused as she goes over her revision flashcards once more.
Ed’s not looking forward to the quiz. The toss of a coin decided which team he’d join, and he’s landed with Tracy, to his mother-in-law’s annoyance. He’s tired after shearing and would rather just settle down with a beer and his wife. He thinks Emma is more of a Carter than a Horrobin. Tired of pussyfooting around Will, he’s lost his rag with him over parking on the yard and feels much better. They ended up laughing about it. He’s ducked out of the quiz and relaxes with a beer, watching his children play and being thankful for his clever, resourceful wife.
Elizabeth has an online date – with Ifty. She frets a little over her greying hair, but applies lipstick and perfume and goes for it. The ‘date’ is boring and a let-down, but it does show her she’s ready to consider not being on her own forever.
Freddie’s still wrestling with fixing the toilet, following some instructions from Reg. His mum wants it fixed before the quiz – she doesn’t like everyone traipsing into her en-suite. But Freddie notes she’s not even going to the quiz. What’s she up to? In the attic looking for parts, he discovers some old toy soldiers, a picture of what could be part of the Lower Loxley grounds near the ha-ha, and to his shock the picture of Lynda that was used for the Ghost Stories last Christmas. It reminds him of her letter, and he opens it. It’s an apology for her outburst when he went to visit her in hospital. Freddie pledges to reply.
Susan and Tracy have been virtual scrapping. Emma doesn’t want to take sides, but perhaps she’ll support her mum. Meanwhile, Ed’s in Wales with Jazzer on a shearing job and feels he’s caught in a tug of war between Tracy and Susan. He can’t be on both of their pub quiz teams so he tosses a coin for it.
Emma’s aware it’s down to her to get Eddie and Will to turn the hay so it can be brought in before the weather breaks. In the end, she decides to do the job herself, with George’s help hitching up the tedder to the tractor. Savouring her success, she can’t wait to tell Ed.