Week Beginning: Sunday 6th August, 2017
Sunday 6th August
Jill makes an announcement and Brian is in full voice
Jill, Emma, Ed, Jazzer, Brian, Harrison, Lulu Duxford
- At the Ambridge fete, rural peace is in short supply. Emma is stressed as she tries to get ready for her refreshments, and argues with Jazzer. Jill has been asked for a photo call with the Duxfords, but is still full of righteous anger at their waste of food. Alistair has forgotten to obtain a raffle prize, which upsets Emma, since Keira had set her heart on it. When Jill announces that she has bought a book for Justin on the book stall about preserving the rural landscape, Emma can take no more.
- Brian arrives to demonstrate his dulcet tones, only to find that has to wear a town crier's outfit and ring a bell. Apparently the PA system has failed. This somewhat cramps his style as he attempts to charm Lulu Duxford. She orders him to 'get on with it' and steps forward to open the fete and promote the new restaurant, which, she claims, will offer training to the unemployed.
- Militant Jill is relentless in her efforts to make public the Duxfords' waste of food, which serves only to make Lulu even more unpleasant. Brian then accuses Jazzer of making babies cry; Jazzer maintains it was Brian's bell. The choral society have spent rather too long in the beer tent, and to crown the day, the zip on Brian's costume seems to have stuck, despite the best efforts of Jazzer to free him.
- At least Emma has had an enjoyable and successful afternoon, and Jazzer enjoys regaling people with Brian's predicament, but the fete reaches a climax when a fight breaks out between the pickers and the local youth. Ed does his best to sort it out, assisted by Jazzer, and, predictably, Harrison arrives when the last punch has been thrown. What is happening to this village, asks Jazzer.
Summarised by Jo Saunders
Monday 7th August
Alistair's mind is elsewhere and Kirsty fears the worst
Alistair, Shula, Anisha, Kirsty, Jill, David
- Alistair is feeling the strain and letting everyone know. He snaps at Shula, who has made lunch for him, complains about Anisha's working for Matt and gives vent to his feelings about Matt. Luckily for Shula, Jill interrupts to deliver Shula's birthday card.
- Jill admits to having been scared by the fight at the fete, but when Alistair apologises for his failure to secure raffle prizes, she is less than gracious towards him. When Alistair storms off to work, Jill asks if he is all right. Kenton and Jolene are celebrating Kenton's birthday with a break in London. Shula can only dream of something similar for her and Alistair.
- Meeting Anisha over the printer, Alistair is, perhaps understandably, not happy to be reminded that he is behind with his billing. She also point out that Matt has already paid for her time. That conversation is interrupted by a call from David to ask where Alistair is; he should have been at Brookfield for 2.00.
- news that the fete made £2,500 for the pop-up café cheers Jill and Kirsty. There will be a barbecue for the helpers to celebrate. Jill tells her young friend that she is inundated with requests from charities, and has even been asked for financial help as a result of her publicity. She has no time for herself any more. Kirsty warns her to be careful.
- After scanning David's cows, Alistair is about to inject the wrong one, and is stopped only by a shout from David. He then leaves his jacket behind, and when David rings Shula to tell her, loses his temper with Shula when she asks him to arrange to see Peggy's dreadful cat. To add to Shula's worries, Kirsty asks if Jill is all right. Shula has more pressing worries than Jill's involvement with good causes. She then suggests that Anisha cover for Alistair so they can go for lunch at Grey Gables, at Oliver's invitation. This, too, fails to meet with Alistair's approval.
- Someone else has realised that all is not well with Alistair; Anisha rings because Alistair is on call, but is not answering his phone, so calls are coming through to her.
Summarised by Jo Saunders
Tuesday 8th August
Oliver receives an invitation and Shula starts to wonder
Bert, Joe, Oliver, Shula, Anisha, Alistair
- Joe persuades Bert to come with him to Grey Gables to offer comfort to Oliver. It's not long before the old Flower and Produce rivalry reasserts itself, however, and here Bert scores a major point when he enquires what the Grundy family will do when Oliver moves back to Grange Farm.
- A very disgruntled Anisha tells Shula that she had to miss nets to cover for Alistair, who was not answering calls. Her rant is interrupted by the arrival of the culprit bearing flowers for Shula's birthday. He brightly announces that he will finish his billing after morning surgery, and when Anisha asks about the reduction he allowed David, Alistair dismisses his mistake as 'a silly mix-up.' tenacious Anisha refuses to let matters go; where was he? Alistair claims that his phone is not working; he needs Dan to fix it. As he continues with his story, his phone rings and Alistair makes a swift exit. So where was he? asks Anisha. I'm not sure, replies Shula lamely.
- Bert and Joe assure Oliver that they know how he feels. Joe, in particular, lays on the sympathy (and accepts tea and cake as a sign of his sympathy. Then Joe plays his trump card: why doesn't Oliver move in with them at Grange Farm? Oliver is hard put to it to contain his mirth. As Bert and Joe go home, Bert tells Joe how shameless he is. The whole sympathy thing was just a ploy to stop Oliver kicking them out of Grange Farm.
- Anisha rings Shula to tell her how angry Alistair was when she told him to get a new phone. Is something going on that she should know about? Shula can only say that he has been busy and is under stress.
- Shula goes alone to lunch with Oliver, who regales her with the tale of Joe Grundy's blatant ploy to stay at Grange Farm. Both of them are highly amused, and think Caroline would have loved it. Memories of the friend who was always there in times of trouble suddenly reduce Shula to tears. Then Oliver gives her a present; a silver bracelet that Guy gave Caroline. Again, Shula begs Oliver to come back to the stables.
- When Shula returns she finds Alistair trying to cool a scalded hand. She asks where he was the previous evening, and begs him to talk to her. She is so worried about him. An argument develops, as Shula tells Alistair they should be supporting Oliver. Alistair retorts that he has enough to worry about without Oliver. Angry and upset, Shula storms off to ring Kenton. She needs help; it's all happening again with Alistair.
Summarised by Jo Saunders
Wednesday 9th August
Justin finds an ally and Phoebe's head is turned
Emma, Justin, Phoebe, Lily, Lexi, Ed, Jazzer
- Justin (and Ruby) receive a surprise visit from Emma, who wants to alert Justin to the level of opposition to his housing proposal. She is concerned that it might deter him from going ahead. Justin assures her that he will not be deterred by nimbyism, and asks if she or Ed might speak up for the proposal at the Parish Council meeting. That, however, is a step too far for Emma, though she sees his point about making the opposers realise that affordable housing is for people from the village who are otherwise unable to buy in Ambridge.
- Phoebe is looking forward to the barbecue which Fallon and Emma are organising for the pickers. Her mind is on Constantin, though Lexi views him rather less romantically. As it gets underway, Lexi thanks them for their efforts at inclusivity. She has seen the Bulgarian attitude to the Roma people back home, and knows that they must all try to welcome strangers. Jazzer seconds that, as a Scot, though Ed is quick to tease him over it.
- Emma tells Ed, Lily and Jazzer about her conversation with Justin. Ed is impressed, but the others are more negative in their response. Emma stands her ground; she and Ed have contributed far more to the village than they have ever received, and an affordable house would be a recognition of this.
- Phoebe's hopes regarding Constantin appear to have materialised; she asks Lily to tell Roy that she is staying at Lower Loxley, though the truth is that she and Constantin have a romantic assignation. Lily is only too pleased to cover for her.
Summarised by Jo Saunders
Thursday 10th August
Lily helps in an emergency and Kenton is called upon
Alistair, Shula, Kenton, Jill, Lily, Phoebe
- Alistair attempts conversation with Shula, but makes little progress. She claims to need space. Alistair tries to explain why it is best that Oliver stay at Grey Gables for the time being, and he knows how tactless he was over the matter, but an angry Shula walks off.
- Lily drives over to Phoebe's to find out how the night with Constantin went. It was 'great' according to Phoebe, but there is a problem; the condom was faulty and her contraceptive injection has run out. Seemingly Constantin was not bothered. Their conversation is interrupted by Kirsty so practical Lily whisks Phoebe off to the clinic. After the consultation Phoebe moans about the £26 she had to pay at the clinic. Lily thinks Constantin should pay, but there seems little likelihood of that. Phoebe should have known better. But was it worth it? asks Lily. Yes, it was.
- Back from his birthday trip to London. Kenton rings Jill, who claims that Shula spoilt the barbecue by failing to provide the promised salad. (Would one missing salad really spoil everyone's evening?) Jill is inundated with requests from charities, and this is causing her a lot of stress. Kenton suggests going along to their meetings to see what appeals - and hastily rings off.
- Shula overhears Alistair making arrangements to meet someone this evening. What is going on? she demands. And where were you on Monday? At first Alistair keeps up the lie, saying he was on call, but Shula makes it clear that she knows he is lying. Eventually Alistair admits he was at Gamblers Anonymous, and has arranged to go with Maurice Horton to another meeting tonight. Shula is very upset; if he is gambling again they stand to lose their home and their businesses. Alistair is repentant; he is not gambling, but needs the support of GA because Matt has threatened to reveal all to Anisha. Shula promises family support, but clearly Alistair is very much afraid of Matt. If Matt does tell Anisha they will be finished.
- Kirsty sees to Jill's hives on her own. Poor Jill repeats her confusion over the mountain of requests for help. Kirsty asks what things are most important to her; family, the bees and the Happy Friends café is the reply. In that case, recycle all the other requests and focus on what matters is Kirsty's sound advice.
- Kenton offers brotherly advice to his tearful sister. She has all the family behind her and they will help her through this difficulty.
Summarised by Jo Saunders
Friday 11th August
Lexi takes control and a mutiny is on the cards
Lexi, Phoebe, Susan, Clarrie, Emma, Tom
- The morning-after pill has made Phoebe very sick, but she turns up for work. When Lexi sees her, she is concerned. Phoebe claims she had a bad night, but Lexi is too worldly-wise for that, and soon Phoebe confesses all. Lexi comments that Constantin has been a busy boy this summer, which does little to raise Phoebe's spirits. When Lexi hears that she has been vomiting, she insists on taking her back to the clinic; if she has vomited the pill can't take effect.
- Susan and Clarrie laugh about Joe's offer to have Oliver stay at Grange Farm. They would love to have seen Oliver's face. When Tom comes in with samples of Kefir, neither of them is at all keen to taste it. Tom persists, and they try a little but are revolted by the taste. Then they learn that Tom intends to begin production on his return from the States.
- Phoebe is very grateful to Lexi, and opens up a bit to her. She can't confide in Kate or Roy, and probably not in Jennifer. Only Hayley would understand and she is in Birmingham. Lexi points out that her daughters are 2000 miles away. She also muses on the fact that at Phoebe's age she already had one child and was expecting another.
- Tom is on quite a high about his Nuffield visit and the people he has met. His phone keeps ringing, and pat wants to drink a toast to his new venture. Then Emma appears, to say that she is grateful to Tom for selling land to Damara. Tom only hopes the application will go through despite the growing opposition.
- Lexi drives Phoebe home and reminds her to take the second pill once the vomiting stops. Phoebe is very grateful. She could not have got through it all without Lexi.
- Emma asks Susan if she really is in agreement with Jennifer about not letting 'riff-raff' into the village by providing affordable housing. Susan feels herself cornered; well, she says, I agree a little bit. Both she and Jennifer fear graffiti and fights. Emma stands her ground; she supposes Susan means people like Emma and Ed. Haven't they got a right to a house? Why is everyone slagging off affordable housing? It makes Emma and Ed outsiders in their own village.
Summarised by Jo Saunders
Credited scriptwriter: Liz John