Saturday, 31 March 2012

Tony tells Peggy, Lilian and Jennifer about Rich 30.03.12

The Archers Friday 30th March 2012
  • Matt and the Art of War
  • Worried about Tony
  • Ben is on the prowl again
  • Easter Eggs all round
  • Rich is introduced to the family
  • What Clarrie saw through the window …
  • What’s wrong with concrete frogs?
  • Eddie has a new ferret
  • Eddie’s shifts are safe
  • Bridge Farm’s cows are out

Matt and the Art of War

Jennifer is telling Lilian about Brian being uber stressed. Though the vote on the Super Dairy went his way:

[Jennifer] “He’s used up all his goodwill with the Board, Lilian”

[Lilian] “Well business is war, darling. Ask matt, never has his nose out of Sun Tzu these days”

[Jennifer] “I might have to get Brian a copy”

Deary me. Two of them pumped up and ready for action, in one small village?


Worried about Tony

Peggy’s taking her time to get ready. Lilian and Jennifer are waiting on her so that they can go round to Tony’s (as requested by Pat) to her an announcement.

Seems Peggy takes her time when she’s worried.

As they all are.

Pat really should have told them that there is nothing extra wrong with Tony when she summoned them.

When they later get to Bridge Farm. Tony more-or-less immediately confirms that their announcement isn’t about him.

[Jennifer] “Tony, do you know what you’ve put us through!”

Ben is on the prowl again

[Peggy] “Has he been making a nuisance?”

[Lilian] “Course he has. That’s what we love about him”

Easter Eggs all round

Pigs for George.
Sheeps for Mia.
Cockerel for Jake.
And a duck for Keira.

They’re lucky to have such a nice granny Clarrie.

Rich is introduced to the family

[Tony] “Because it’s important for the family,. You need to know … recently, we found out that John had a son”

After they are all showed photos:

[Peggy] “There’s certainly something of John about him”

[Lilian] “That’s just how I remember John smiling”

Tony and Pat recount how this all started at Ivy Horrobin’s funeral, and how Helen and Tom are far more relaxed now about the situation.

Though they apologise for not having told the rest of the family sooner:

[Lilian] “That last thing you needed was us barging in in our kitty heels!”

[Jennifer] “It’s marvellous news. He looks like such a fine young fellow”

Actually, I didn’t think Peggy sounded remotely pleased to hear about Rich. She was obviously very relieved to hear it wasn’t bad news about Tony, but one would have thought she would have been over the moon to hear that her grandson had a child before he died.

As Lilian drives Jennifer and Pat home:

[Lilian, after having read Rich’s email to Pat and Tony] “ He sounds much more polite than I was at 13!”

[Peggy] “Actually, you were very well behaved then”

[Lilian] “Before I discovered horses and boys!”

(eh? Hope Lilian had different intentions towards them …)

[Peggy] “I’m very glad it’s made Tony and Pat so happy, but as Tony said, Rich won’t be down that often. He has a very full life in Leeds, and perhaps that’s just as it should be”

Ah, so Peggy isn’t sure that Rich being part of the family is a good idea.

Peggy moves in mysterious ways. And ever so subtly. Her disapproval could take a while to take effect.

What Clarrie saw through the window …

Was the Peggy/Jack side of the Archer clan gathering.

And she knows it wasn’t any of their birthdays …

… how long before she works the rest out?

What’s wrong with concrete frogs?

Clarrie was telling Eddie about her time with Jennifer – talking about flowering plants as part of her promise auction (which Jennifer has successfully bidded on). She reckons they just “chatted”, though she did impart a bit of knowledge about lilies and annual seeding.

But mostly:

[Clarrie] “I did enjoy going over there though, having a good nosy round. Imaging it were my garden”

[Eddie] “Spot anywhere for a burying mole, or a cheeky concrete frog with a fly on its nose?”

[Clarrie] “No, well they ain't really garden ornament people, are they?”

[Eddie] “Pity. I can’t give those frogs away at the moment”

[Clarrie] “I wonder why!”

Clarrie said that last bit with a significant amount of passion, and some certain knowledge.

Did I miss something? Previous problems or disagreements about purchase of said concrete frogs with a fly ion their nose?!?

Eddie has a new ferret

Called Hercules.

[Clarrie] “Oh for heaven’s sake. Clipping his claws while I’m making the pudding … I want it covered in crumble topping nothing else crunchy!”

[Eddie] “Come on Hercules. You’ll soon learn it ain't worth arguing when she’s like this”

Hercules, I’d listen to Clarrie first and foremost if I was you.

Eddie’s shifts are safe

At Brookfield.

Even though:

[Eddie] “40 grand to store slurry!”

Here’s hoping David and Ruth can keep up with the repayments.

Bridge Farm’s cows are out

[Tony] “The first night the girls stay out on grass after winter”

[Pat] “It brings them back to life, doesn’t it?”

Yay! Cows getting out after Winter. I just (genuinely) love it.

The cows being out are helping Tony’s overall sense of positivity. He even wanted, and felt like he could, do the milking today.

The bank has also extended Bridge Farm’s interest free mortgage.

And lent them the money for the new poly tunnel.

But it’s not just the cows having the good-feelin’ impact.

[Pat] “Tom's enthusiasm is infectious. He’s got me buzzing again”

The cows are out. The tatties are in. And:

[Tony] “This place feels like it has got a future. We should make the most of it … at moments like this, it feels simply wonderful to be alive”


It only took a heart attack to make Tony a bit happier.

Thursday, 29 March 2012

Not the roof, Robert! 29.03.12

The Archers Thursday 29th March 2012
  • The BL Board meeting about the Super Dairy
  • Pat and Tony have panicked the family
  • Schubert week on BBC Radio 3
  • Robert is not young mountain goat
  • The Peregrines have eggs
  • Youth cricket is a goer
  • Did Brian win?

The BL Board meeting about the Super Dairy

[Annabelle] “There’s quite a glint in your eyes this afternoon”

[Brian] “Of terror”

Aye – it’s the moment we’ve been waiting for. The big BL meeting about the Super Dairy.


[Brian] “This afternoon is more about company philosophy. Are we quitters or fighters”

As the debate gets going, Gerry says he’s worried about the impact the Super Dairy would have on all future BL projects.

Martin wonders whether they could scale down the Super Dairy. Though I think he’s completely missed the point …

[Gerry] “And still have the bunny huggers on our backs!”

Brian tries to reason with them that the entire point about the profitability of the Super Dairy hasn’t changed. So the reason they voted it in all those months ago hasn’t changed.

[Brian] “If we give up now we lose profit and reputation for nothing … if we cave in over this we’ll put everything we want in the future at risk … knuckles at the first sign of opposition … is that the signal of weaknesses we want to send out to our opponents”

Brian was starting to sound a bit Winston Churchill for my liking … but did it sway the board?

Pat and Tony have panicked the family

Seems when Pat called Jennifer to call them round for a family gathering, she wouldn’t say what it was about.

So now Jennifer is worried. She thinks it’s bad news about Tony.

[Brian] “Maybe the long term prognosis isn’t as good as we’d hoped”

Schubert week on BBC Radio 3

Of which Robert wants to listen to as much as possible.

Funny that he doesn’t realise he’s being broadcast live only one channel over.

Robert is not young mountain goat

So he claims.

Lynda wants the gutters cleaned.

And she wants them cleaned right now. No matter what else Robert has planned.

(why she couldn’t just do it herself, I don’t know)

[Lynda] “We don’t want them looking unsightly, do we?”

[Robert] “Lyndee, they’re flying over with a friend, not the guttering Police”

[Lynda] “We’d never forgive ourselves if there were any blemishes when our little home gets it portrait taken”

While he’s up there, Lynda also asks if he’ll clean off the moss.

[Lynda] “I know it’s picturesque but there’s s fine line between character and decrepitude”

[Robert] “Will you stop confusing me with a young mountain goat!”

But before Lynda answers, she gets a call from Jamie about the peregrines and leaves Robert up there without a watcher.

Has she forgotten about Nigel already?

The Peregrines have eggs

As spotted by Jamie.

Seems he looks up at church every time he passes it, after Lynda accosted him to look at the Peregrines last year.

They’ve got two eggs, though Lynda reckons they normally start off with four.

Lynda will be guarding them with her life … and also probably Jamie’s.

Youth cricket is a goer

So Jamie says to Lynda.

He was about to say he’d started it off to not have to spend all their time with the auld yins, but Lynda understands:

[Lynda] “Hang around with the more chronologically challenged …”

The current line-up is Jamie, Marty Josh and two of the Button cousins.

The bloke they mentioned from Westbury will be coaching them.

Nickname Nifty Ifti – actual name Iftikhar.

[Lynda] “Nifty bowler and quite as a whippet in the field!”

Sounds fun.

Did Brian win?

Course he did.

Though he was feeling a bit beaten up by the end of the meeting.

And despite his, Annabelle’s and the secret microphones attempts to make us initially think he’d lost the vote.

[Annabelle] “The more you spoke, the more trenchant Gerry’s opposition became”

Brian felt Andrew had made a good case, and even got him doubting himself!

But Martin eventually sided with Brian.

As did Barbara:

[Brian] “the wild card … After I’d sweated blood for her support!”

But Brian seems very far from his usual, boorish, jubilant self:

[Brian] “I’m glad to have squeaked through, although at what cost … I haven’t let myself anywhere to hide … if anything goes wrong, my neck’s right on the chopping block”


The Super Dairy will be an especially rough ride if even Brian himself isn’t 100% confident.

Family secrets no more 28.03.12

The Archers Wednesday 28th March 2012
  • Caribou Kirsty
  • Email from Rich
  • Alice and Amy on Chris
  • Belly busters need Tom’s bangers
  • Another pop at Maurice
  • Ambridge by Air
  • Alice and Amy on Carl

Caribou Kirsty

Is one of Kenton’s special Easter cocktails.

Though Amy doesn’t want one. She’d prefer a Cranberry spritzer, even though she’s on a night out with Alice. She has work tomorrow.

Delights of Ambridge’s Easter holidays will also include a “Harry and Jazzer Special Quiz” at The Bull, and a retro night at Jaxx.

[Kenton] “You know where the hottest night in town will be!”

Email from Rich

Delights Tony and Pat.

He tells them that he really enjoyed his visit, and would like to come back again. He even mentioned the pigs twice.

(high praise indeed!)

(I was then momentarily taken aback when Pat knew how to download a photo Rich had sent to them onto a memory stick, to then get printed out in town)

[Pat] “He looks so similar yet so different”

Tony and Pat discuss whether it is now time to tell the rest of the family, considering it looks like Rich is about to become part of their life.

[Tony] “Maybe it’s time to end all the secrecy”

[Pat] “It’s been so overwhelming, I never thought of Peggy or your sisters”

But they decide to ask Tom and Helen first, considering the problems they caused last time they weren’t consulted.

When they show Tom the email.

[Tom] “Good attitude to pigs”

When they tell him about them wanting to tell their close family:

[Tom] “Oh. Everybody … That’s fine by me”

So Pat will do a ring round tomorrow to ask everyone over.

After all the surprises Bridge Farm has had over the last year:

[Pat] “I wonder what Peggy, Jennifer and Lilian will make of this one?”

Huh. Haven’t they forgotten to ask Helen, or does Tom speak for both of them now?

Alice and Amy on Chris

[Amy] “Chris is so good to you”

[Alice] “I know. It’s a good job I deserve it!”

Belly busters need Tom’s bangers

So Tom delivered them in the evening to a Tom’s bangers bereft Jaxx.

Another pop at Maurice

What’s he done to deserve that recently?

Seems the sealer at Bridge Farm went, which has created more delays and problems.

[Tom] “You can imagine how Maurice has reacted!”

[Kenton] “With a smile on his lips and a song in his heart”

He’s not mentioned for years, then harassed twice in as many days!

Ambridge by Air

Word is spreading about Leonie and James’ plans to take photographs of Ambridge from the air.

[Kenton] “There was nearly a riot when Derek Fletcher found out … an outrageous invasion of privacy … even now, I suspect he’s arming his garden gnomes with rocket launchers”

And Tom reckons that if it’s a warm day, there may be real invasions of privacy if folks are sunbathing for an all over tan.

Alice and Amy on Carl

[Amy] “He’s nice”

[Alice] “French fries are nice Amy, I want to know how hot and fit!”

Poor Amy. She’s just started seeing this bloke, but Alice wants every detail.

Amy tells her he has great eyes. He’s masculine, but sensitive. Great sense of humour.

And they’ve had breakfast together …

[Alice] “There’s no point denying it. You’re glowing!”

And there’s more.

His family is really important to him (he checks his parents’ house every weekend while they’re over in Spain).

And he visits his gran in her nursing home.

[Amy] “I think he’s great”

Just me, or do we think Carl is far too good to be true?

Him visiting his gran is pushing it …

Darrell likes cats 27.03.12

The Archers Tuesday 27th March 2012

  • All go at Brookfield
  • Martin Gibson is quite odd
  • Darrell is nice to Peggy
  • Kamikaze sheep
  • Brian harasses Martin

All go at Brookfield

Seems it’s going to cost twice as much for the Brookfield new silage tank than they’d first thought.

David’s despondent (again), Ruth’s being positive (of course). She reckons the repayments won’t be so bad over 5 years. Though it will be tight times.

And they also have to get planning permission.

But, in a rare fit of positivity himself, David calls the planning department. They say they can’t see any problems with getting permission, as the tank is away from housing and not on the skyline.

[David] “I think, let’s go for it Ruth … we’ve been dealing in theories for so long, let’s just crack on and do something”

Thank goodness for that! Only been 4 months since the badgers did the deed …

Martin Gibson is quite odd

When Brian telephones him, Martin reckons he is “peachy”. Though his PA wants to resign. He can’t get the car he wants for 3 months. And his wife reckons she is fat.

[Brian] “Good lord. A young do is trying to kick a hare”

[Martin] “What sort of pub are you calling from?”


Not much of a sense of humour, then.

Darrell is nice to Peggy

And Bill and Ben.

Which I’m very glad about, as I was worried Darrell and Elona were going to try and rip her off.

He’s changing over Peggy’s bathroom taps (they were that old, they had no purchase yet).

Ben keeps coming in and out, Peggy keeps chasing him away, but Darrell likes his interruptions.

A cat man, then.

He was saying that he, Elona and the girls love living at number 3.

[Darrell] “One of the things I like best, and I didn’t think I would, is the bell ringing”

So Peggy encourages him to join up. He’d be Ambridge through and through then.

When he’s finished the work, he’ll also only take money for the cost of the taps. Peggy is a bit horrified that he won’t let her pay him, but he wants to do it as thanks for all her help.

[Darrell] “I enjoyed the company anyway. You can the cats. I’d rather keep busy than kicking my heels at home”

(though he has got work with Lilian and Matt at Amside, and his daughter Rosa has work with Mike at his dairy)

Ah. People being nice to other people. Lovely.

Kamikaze sheep

At Brookfield.

When David and Ruth lugged her back out of whatever she’d got herself embroiled in, she kicked David’s shin “really hard”.

[Ruth] “It means she hasn’t hurt herself!”

And she hadn’t. She was fine, and able to get back to her lambs.

Brian harasses Martin

[Brian] “If we stick to our guns, we can win the argument at every level!”

Martin reckons not so. The cows not being outside on grass has a lot of “traction”.

But Brian reckons he can tell the protestors quite a few proper horror stories.

[Brian] “There’s a couple of brothers in North Borchestershire. Cows on grass, how lovely. Except most of them have foot rot because neither of the old boys know how to use a paring knife properly”

But Martin reckons it doesn’t matter about the substance of the arguments in favour of the Super Dairy. It’s the negative perceptions that count.

[Martin] “Withdraw gracefully, before BLs’ reputation takes too much of a beating … How much bigger do the protests have to get?”

Brian asserts that they just have to hold their nerve and hang on … there will be “kudos” to have once the profits start rolling in.

[Brian] “You watch. There will be one or two red faces on the board then!”

Martins sound unconvinced, so Brian brings out the big guns. That he’ll have to step down if the vote doesn’t go his way.

Not sure what Brian was expecting, but Martin seemed fairly nonplussed about that …

The Snells’ garden furniture is out 26.03.12

The Archers Monday 26th March 2012

  • “You always look so sinister in a face shield”
  • Brian’s not for turning
  • Maurice isn’t happy
  • Tony and Pat look happy
  • The Snells are back!
  • The first green burial went well
  • Ambridge fly over
  • Clarrie on flowering plants

“You always look so sinister in a face shield”

So says Jennifer to Brian.

We’ll take her word for it.

Brian’s not for turning

Debbie isn’t amused with Brian.

[Brian] “She thinks it’s my fault Annabelle isn’t turning cartwheels over her pig idea … I’m with Labelle, changing tact now will make BL, and me, look hopelessly indeed. So I’m staking everything on pushing through the original dairy plan … though the slimmer the chances seem”

The BL Board meeting to make a decision about the Super Dairy is this Thursday.

[Brian] “Not a prospect to gladden the heart …”

[Jennifer] “So it’s all in the lap of the gods?”

[Brian] “No it isn’t, I’m not just going to sit back and do nothing!”

Brian is going to do some “serious lobbying” between now and Thursday.

He has no other choice but to try and persuade more of the other board ,members to be on his side.

[Brian] “I’ve nailed my colours to the mast for this project. If the damn thing goes own, I’m not sure my position as chairman remains tenable”

Wonder if Brian is going to truly throw all of his toys out of the pram and resign if he doesn’t get his way?

(actually, I can’t really claim to care that much., The BL sessions are always a bit dull … though the prospect of the Super Dairy going ahead in Ambridge is a tad more interesting)

Maurice isn’t happy

But he’s still working overtime for Tom.

Needs must.

Tony and Pat look happy

In fact, they’re all aglow since Rich’s visit yesterday.

[Pat] “It was a wonderful thing for you and Helen to do”

When Brian pops by to see if they want him to pick them up anything from the Farm Supplies shop:

(he’s getting a long list, including ram crayons – Pat just wants twist ties)

[Brian] “I haven’t seen your mother so happy in ages!”

And Tom told him that Tony was also chirpy this morning.

Tom puts it down to the sun shining.

Wonder how long before they start telling everyone else about Rich.

The Snells are back!


I do miss them when they go a bit quiet.

They’re setting up their breakfast outside.

[Lynda] “It would be criminal not to have breakfast en plein air when the sun is out”

And as Robert said – it’s a marvellous feeling to get ones garden furniture out again.

[Lynda] “Everything is starting up again, after all the dark and grey”


The first green burial went well

Lynda tells us.

Her and Robert also seemed quite dewy eyed about their own plots in the site … wistfully morbid.

Ambridge fly over

Quite literally. Not roadworks.

Seems James’ friend Christina has his own helicopter (as you do), and is happy to fly James and Leonie over Ambridge to get some photographs.

That starts Lynda and Robert trying to work out what could be happening that would be worthy of an arial shot.

Not the Lower Loxley fair. Nor the boules at The Bull. Or the Easter Egg hunt.

[Lynda] “Not visually compelling … (then she has it!) … the Brownies Easter bonnet parade!”

[Robert] “That will come as quite a surprise to Brown Owl”

[Lynda] “Rather a lot of things are a surprise to jenny Throphall!”

But the might have to ask the parents’ permission first. And it might be more trouble than it’s worth with kids like Jinny Button involved.

[Robert] “She’d set fire to the village hall to get on camera!”

But Lynda has another cunning plan.


Which Robert will have to stage.

At which point Robert starts pointing Lynda away from specifics:

[Robert] “Perhaps Leonie and James will be better to use broader brushstrokes …”

Like the building, the backbones and such, of the village.

Lynda concurs.

Especially if it means she can get a picture of her beloved Ambridge Hall.

Clarrie on flowering plants

Jennifer had successfully bidded for Clarrie’s advice on flowering plants at the promise auction.

[Brian] “Are you holding her to that?”

[Jennifer] “It would be very disrespectful if I didn’t”

Actually, Jennifer is quite looking forward to a “fresh” pair of eyes on her garden.

Rich visits Bridge Farm 25.03.12

The Archers Sunday 25th March 2012

  • Uncle Tom not interested?
  • Eamon sounds like a nice chap
  • First proper bee inspection
  • When Rich met his grandparents

Uncle Tom not interested?

Though the coke and lemonade are on the ready, with Pat, tony and Helen nervously trying to prepare for Rich’s arrival, Tom heads out to feed the pigs.

[Tom] “Don’t worry mum. I’ll catch him later. If I get the chance”

Really Tom? Surely that’s a jest.

Eamon sounds like a nice chap

Just as Eamon and Rich are driving up to Bridge Farm, Eamon stops the car.

[Eamon] “it’s a good place to turn around, if you want to. Remember you’re the boss this morning .. it’s all happened so fat … believe me, no one will blame you if you change your mind”

[Rich] “It’s okay dad. I want to do this”

Good man.

He was also very calm and friendly during the visit, which couldn’t have been an easy one for him to have made. Rich is his boy.

First proper bee inspection

With Jill and Josh.

Though Josh is now getting too big for the bee suit Jill’s given him. He might have to get his own.

Jill was telling Josh to have patience as they are smoking the bees.

[Jill] “Let word spread it’s a forest fire before we open up”

[Pat] “One day they’ll work up it’s not really a fire!”

Jill reckons not.

And all seems well with the bees.

[Jill] “The bees have done well this winter.”

When Rich met his grandparents

[Eamon] “ This is it. These are your grandparents”

They all say help, and Rich says “nice to meet you”.

One of the first things Eamon asks on Rich’s behalf if a photo of John.

During Rich’s visit, he learns that bacon comes from pigs. That John was a good businessman (started up the pigs when he was 17), and was also a DJ.

As they were out walking.

[Rich] “Did he die near here?”

Tad morbid, but fair of him to ask. But Pat had taken them round the farm a different way.

Rich seemed to enjoy hanging out with Tom while he was dealing with a pig who had lost its yellow tag.

[Rich] “It’s what my father did, isn’t it … mum said he was good at it”

[Tom] “I expect that seems a bit weird. Most people don’t like pigs”

[Rich] “Sounds like a really cool guy”

Rich offers to help Tom, but he’s got his best jacket on. Though he sounds quite keen in helping out “next time”. That’s a good sign.

Back in the farm house, they’ve had lunch, and time to leave.

[Rich] “The ice cream was awesome!”

And he also liked the pigs, and farms.

[Rich] “They’re pretty cool. Once you get used to the smell”

(aha! He likes the pigs and the ice cream. This bodes well. Though Tom, Helen and Henry might not agree … inheritance split ahoy!)

As he’s leaving, Rich asked for a picture of John (he chose the one of him doing his DJ stuff), and also gave Pat a hug (though Eamon encouraged him to do so, he was quite glad to).

[Pat] “Isn’t it wonderful. Absolutely wonderful!”


All’s well then.

For now.

Friday, 23 March 2012

Rich to visit Bridge Farm 23.03.12

The Archers Friday 23rd March 2012
  • Kylie has good news for Helen
  • Bridge Farm doesn’t know when Sunday is
  • Annabelle wants Brian to stick with cows
  • Tony feels good
  • Reminder that the clocks go forward

Kylie has good news for Helen

Kylie calls Helen. Helen starts apologising for “opening old wounds for Sharon”. Kylie agrees that Sharon was very upset, but:

[Kylie] “What happened happened. But. In a way, that’s what was needed … mum said that Eamon can bring Rich down to Bridge Farm on Sunday, if you want, is that okay?”

Bridge Farm doesn’t know when Sunday is

First Tom – who has to ask if Sunday is the day after tomorrow.

[Tom] “Wow!”

Seems Sharon has also told Rich that Pat and Tony are his grandparents. And that he had already met them. He wants to meet them again.

[Helen] “Tom, we did it!”

Thankfully, Tom and Helen tell Tony and Pat (rather than making Rich’s visit a surprise, which would only lead to Tony having another heart attack).

[Helen] “he’ll meet you properly, as your grandson”

Tony and Pat also have to work out when Sunday was, but then:

[Tony] “No no, I don’t need any time to think … I think I can speak for both of us Pat, the answer is yes, we do want him to come on Sunday. Thank you”.

One can only hope that Rich turns out to be as nice a lad as he seems.

Annabelle wants Brian to stick with cows

She’s really not convinced about the pig plan.

[Annabelle] “There would be the same objections as with the dairy unit over animal welfare”

[Brian] “The idea of pigs being housed indoors isn’t anything like as bad as cows”

But Annabelle reckons that the protestors already hate, and want to attack, BL. They won’t stop just because BL are going to permanently house, en masse, another type of animal.

[Annabelle’ “I can’t seem then just giving in and rolling over because we tell them it’s pigs and not cows … moral crusade against any and every intensive farming”

Annabelle also thinks that it won’t do him any good with the BL board to:

[Annabelle] “be changing horses midstream … That kind of flip flopping always looks weak … the board loses confidence in the Chairman, and you’d be edged out”

[Brian] “That’d be a disaster”

(aye – just like when Matt was edged out …)

[Annabelle] “Convince the Board you’re right, Brian”

Tony feels good

[Tony] “I feel as fresh as a daisy today, well, sort of”

Ah, that’s better than feeling worse.

Reminder that the clocks go forward

This time, from Pat:

[Pat] “And don’t forget, we lose an hour on Sunday with the clocks going forward”

Cheers Pat!

At least my van clock will be right again!

It’s different with Pigs 22.03.12

The Archers Thursday 22nd March 2012
  • They shouldn’t have laughed at the llamas
  • Bartleby’s brass gets a polish
  • Usha isn’t gossiping
  • Damsons make Joe a happy chappy
  • Lilian bosses Brian
  • Tony wants to ask Lilian first
  • Alan and Usha have an old hot water system
  • Green burials are noisy
  • At last – someone mentions Shula and Alan
  • What about Karl?
  • Blondes can be clever sometimes
  • James will get Lilian for his birthday present
  • Pigs not cows

They shouldn’t have laughed at the llamas

Seems they’re doing a grand work of Alan and Usha’s lawn.

[Usha] “I still do a double take every time I come home and see lamas on the lawn”

[Alan] “They’re doing a fantastic job … best investment I’ve made in a long time!”

So they may have laughed at Lynda offering the llamas during the promise auction, but it’s all worked out right. Which I’m glad about. I thought the Ambridge folks were very cruel to Lynda (apart from Alan, of course).

Bartleby’s brass gets a polish

From Alan, helping Joe out with a random act of kindness for lent.

That’s nice for Bartleby.

Usha isn’t gossiping

When she told Alan about Vicky getting Eddie to work an extra four hours for free.

[Usha] “Not a bit of it. I think to like of it as more of reportage”

Damsons make Joe a happy chappy

He and Jim and co have been planting them in the hedge of the community orchard,

[Alan] “Joe sounded really chuffed seeing his old orchard all restored”

Lilian bosses Brian

Brian’s still worried about farmers abandoning The Mart because of the protestors.

[David] “You know how farmers talk. It’s probably bluster … old habits die hard … they won’t move and miss the chance of meeting up with farmers they’ve know for years”

David moves on elsewhere, but Lilian corners Brian in his place.

[Lilian] “Have you heard these rumours? As an investor, I’m very concerned … people are like sheep., it’ll only take a couple of farmers to go elsewhere and we’ll have a mass exodus!”

[Brian] “That’s arrant nonsense … and in my opinion you’ve being totally irresponsible, racing round like chicken licken saying the sky is going to fall down”

[Lilian] “Get it under control Brian, ASAP, before it gets out of hand!”

Oh Brian won’t like that. Being told by Lilian what to do? No wonder he’s increasingly desperate to find a solution to his Super Dairy woes.

Tony wants to ask Lilian first

All seems to be going very well at Home Farm.

The grass is “bulking out nicely”, according to Tony, which means the cows can get out towards the end of next week.

Tony also agrees with Tom and Pat that they should try and extend their interest free mortgage for another six months. And, he now agrees that Tom should try and get a loan to extend the poly tunnels. Seems it will pay itself back in three years (just like Brookfield’s new dairy system),

But, he wants to ask Lilian first. He doesn’t want to start spending without first paying back the loan she gave them.

So, he and Pat sit down with Lilian to tell her their plans.

[Lilian] “That sounds wonderful, but I can’t for the life why you’re telling me … Oh good grief, darlings. I’m in no hurry for the money … you can pay me once you’re properly back on your feet”

Recession proof, our Lilian is.

Alan and Usha have an old hot water system

So it would seem.

They can’t run the hot water in the kitchen without ruining Amy’s bath.

Green burials are noisy

Alan is getting ready for the first burial at the green burial site.

[Alan] “I’m told wicker coffins are noisy … they creak … wonder if I should warn the family?”

Sounds terrifying!

At last – someone mentions Shula and Alan

It’s Alan himself.

He mentions to Usha that Shula has offered her donkey, Benjamin, for Palm Sunday again. But this time, she’s even offered to look after him herself during the service.

[Usha] “I’m pleased for you”

So, the cold front is indeed warming.

What about Karl?

Something is building about Amy’s new boyfriend (or not, he might just be a mate).

Alan mentioned that Amy had mentioned Karl, but “didn’t say much else”. Alan reckons she’ll talk about him if he is important to her.

What’s afoot?

Blondes can be clever sometimes

[Tony] “So the ,lovely Lisa is not just a pretty face?”

[David] “She may look like a ditzy blond but she’s as sharp as a tack”

James will get Lilian for his birthday present

[Lilian] “Isn’t one’s time a better gift?”
Probably not for James.

Pigs not cows

Debbie has a cunning plan.

She’s going to swap large scale dairy for a large scale pig unit. Debbie reckons they’ll get similar benefits, but will be a more “mainstream” solution.

[Brian] “Why in earth would we shift our ground at this stage?”

And also why pigs, when other pig farmers seem to be struggling.

But – and this is where Debbie living in Hungry comes in useful (seems no one in Ambridge takes any heed of news reports in the TV, newspapers interest (etc) about that place they call Europe). She says that more European farmers are getting out of pigs because the new welfare regulations make them less profitable. So, there’s a nice gap for a large scale production.

[Debbie] “Just like the cow setup, it would be a large pig unit … but this time, there would be no need for outside suppliers”

[Brian] “We’d still have a very large animal production unit with pigs permanently indoors”

[Debbie] “It’s different with pigs, honestly, it’s all about perception. People are far more used to the idea of pigs indoors”

[Brian, warming to the idea] “At the moment I need all the get of jail cards I can get my hands on”

Well – I’m not sure Debbie is right this time.

Will Tom and Neil be supportive? Jazzer?

And with pigs being such intelligent animals (they play footy, don’t you know), won’t the protestors abhor this even more?

When Helen met Sharon 21.03.12

The Archers Wednesday 21st March 2012
  • Vicky Vs Eddie
  • Helen visits Sharon
  • Helen’s inconsolable

Vicky Vs Eddie

Most definitely results in a 1-0 home result for Vicky.

He’s “squeezed” Vicky in between jobs, to do her water feature (as promised under the promise auction).

But, as we all know, Vicky (and Mike) feel Eddie pulled a fast one:

[Vicky] “When I joined the bidding at the promise auction I never imagined we’d be scammed!”

Eddie claims it was clear as day that he was offering just to fit a water feature, not to buy and fit one.

[Vicky] “But that’s what you made it look like!”

[Eddie] “Always read the small print … terms and conditions apply”

And moving swiftly on …

[Eddie] “Any chance of a cuppa before I start?”

[Vicky, quite angry] “You’ve got a nerve!”

[Eddie] “And a biccy if you’ve got one”

Ah – but Eddie isn’t chuckling at Vicky’s expense for very long.

Vicky’s decided to change her mind about where she wants her water feature. She now wants it further away from the house. Which, as Eddie is quick to notice, is “miles away from the electric supply”.

[Eddie] “It’ll take me hours to just dig the trench for the cables!”

[Vicky] “Oh dear. Well, perhaps you’d better forget that cup of tea then and get cracking!”

Once Eddie has finished, and the “grand switch on” went off without a hitch, Vicky has a final sting to make.

[Vicky] “It’s lovely. And it’ll look even lovelier when you lay those slate chippings”

Eddie is not pleased, but hasn’t got much choi8ce,. Vicky said it had something to do with Abby being safe around the new water feature.

Ah – that Vicky’s a wild yin!

Helen visits Sharon

They got off to a good start.

At least Sharon opened the door to Helen (though she only half-heartedly offer her a cup of tea or coffee, and didn’t even ask her to sit down).

Helen explains the rough year Bridge Farm has been through. And that Tony has had a heart attack.

[Sharon] “Yeah, I was sorry to hear about that … I wouldn’t wish that on anybody”

Helen talks about Ton having out his own feelings to one side to be able to support Pat, and that just when they thought things were turning for the better, he collapsed.

Sharon doesn’t see what it has to do with her.

[Helen] “They’ve been left with so many regrets”

[Sharon] “I can’t help with any of that”

[Helen] “You can”

[Sharon] “I can’t. How your mum and dad feel is up to them. It’s always up to them”

Helen tells Sharon that Pat and Tony deeply regret what happened in the past, that they want things to be different and that they want to get to know Rich, and he them.

[Sharon] “Kylie said you’d want to talk about Rich and I knew this is what you’d ask”

Sharon still doesn’t want to upset Rich. He’s doing grand at school, is settled, loves his dad. She doesn’t want his live changed.

[Helen] “Just to let him know there are other people that love and care for him too, and who he can turn to if he ever needed us … my dad my die without ever seeing Rich again”

[Sharon] “I’m sorry, but I can’t help that”

[Helen] “The thing is, you can. If you let bygones be bygones, if you could just bring yourself to forgive mum and dad and let it go”

[Sharon] “Let it go!”

[Helen] “Oh that sounded crass … I lost someone I felt very deeply for too … but those feelings of hate and blame gnaw away at you too, if you don’t forgive …”

[Sharon] “That’s enough! Oh, you’re your mother’s daughter alright. If you think you can come into my house and start patronising me … I think you better leave”

[Helen] “I’m really sorry if I've offended you ... if you can’t do this for mum and dad's sake, do it for John's. ... I know you loved John, you called your son after him”

[Sharon, almost whispering] “Oh John ... I did love him”

[Helen] “I know, you loved him just as much as you did”

But Sharon is now beyond upset, and asks Helen to go. Which she does.

Helen’s inconsolable

Helen really does take things hard.

When she gets home, and goes to see Tom (after settling Henry), she’s already sobbing.

[Helen] “It was a disaster … I tried everything I could think of … tried to connect with her … I felt like I antagonised her from the off”

[Tom] “None of that had any affect?”

[Helen] “It was like she’d put on protective armour, and she wasn’t going to let anything get through that might touch her”

(Helen is now sobbing even harder)

[Tom] “At least you tried, eh, and it took a lot of guts”

[Helen] “No. No it’s much worse than you think”

[Tom] “It’s not your fault that she’s so hard faced and unforgiving”

[Helen] “It was awful, I brought John into it. I was desperate … she wasn’t angry at all, just so hurt, so wounded. I didn’t want to cause her any pain … that was my one chance, our one chance, and she won’t let any of us anywhere near her family again … I've failed them when it really, really mattered”

[Tom] “You mustn’t worry about mum and dad. They don’t know about this and we won’t tell them … I’m so proud of you, and you couldn’t have done anything more”

You know – for once I’m going to actually give Tom credit.

He may be an a*se 99.9% of the time, but he does look after his rather emotionally fragile sister.

Jim concerns a tie shop assistant 20.02.12

The Archers Tuesday 20th March 2012
  • Let Brian eat cake!
  • Andrew is a “silly man”
  • The bees need sugar syrup
  • Bert’s sorting Susan’s garden
  • Jim accosts Christine (again)
  • Alice is going to get an Easter egg
  • Brian and cricket
  • The village shop aggressively sells to kids
  • Brookfield back on an even keel in 3 years

Let Brian eat cake!

As there’s no biscuits.

Andrew is a “silly man”

According to Jennifer.

Andrew Eagleton is on the BL board. Seems he’s panicking about all of the bad publicity about the Super Dairy, and wants to table a resolution for it to be withdrawn as a project.

[Jennifer] “Oh the silly man. He’s just panicking unnecessarily, surely”

Brian reckons not. Andrew has also got Martin Gibson concerned.

But there’s more.

[Brian] “Even some of our loyal customers are fed up of driving past the protestors, and are thinking of going somewhere else”

Brian’s panicking, so calls Debbie.

[Debbie] “I won’t let that happen … Leave it with me dad”

[Brian] “If we’re going to save this project, we need to do some sharp thinking”

(I still find it odd that Debbie calls Brian dad, by the way)

The bees need sugar syrup

Oh I do (genuinely) love Jill and her bees.

She was checking their food stocks today, and reckoned.

[Jill] “A couple of the hives do feel a bit light”

So she left them some sugar syrup on the brood box.


Lucky bees.

(though I have no idea what a brood box is)

Bert’s sorting Susan’s garden

Doe the promise auction Susan won.

Though Ruth’s not so sure that it’s a good idea:

[Ruth] “Susan’s quite proud of her garden, Isn’t she?”

[Jill] “Yes, I hope she doesn’t take his suggestions the wrong way!”

But turns out it wasn’t Susan offended by Bert telling her what to do. It was the other way round.

[Ruth] “He came back most disgruntled, instead of helping her to design and create a fantastic garden for Ambridge View, he was up to his elbows in weeds and a bit of old pram at number 6 The Green”


That’s one way of getting Bert, Gary and Tracey’s garden sorted without Neil having to do it.

Jim accosts Christine (again)

[Jill on Christine] “Between you and me Ruth, she’s a bit worried at the moment … well, it’s Jim. He was a bit effusive in complimenting her last week … that her perfume smelt alluring”

[Ruth] “Alluring, you’re joking! Does that mean there’s a December romance in the offing?”

And they both have a good laugh at Christine and Jim’s expense … which wasn’t very nice of them.

Later on:

[Jennifer] “Oh, here comes Jim!”

[Christine] “Oh dear …”

[Jim] “Christine, just the woman I need. I have something quite important to ask you … it’s about a phone call of some consequence I need to make this afternoon, and I need you to be present, if you don’t mind … it’d make a chap very happy”

So Christine, very uncomfortably, agrees.

Later on:

[Jim] “As it was such a nice afternoon, I thought it’d be nice to do this out of doors … are you sitting comfortably? Then we’ll begin”

So, he calls someone to pay them a compliment.

[Jim, on the phone] “It was a very rewarding retail experience … of course I am, perfectly serious … unexpectedly knowledgeable on the subject of ties”

It sounded like the person on the other end of the phone hung up, but Jim just reckoned it was a bad connection due to them being in the garden.

Christine is perplexed.

[Christine] “I’m sorry Jim, you called me over to listen to a phone call to a tie shop?”

[Jim] “Gentleman’s outfitter, if you please”

Jim then records the compliment he has just given, and asks Christine to sign his book as a witness.

As she does so, she notices her name, and his compliment about her perfume, on the opposite page.

Ah. The penny drops. And Christine now gladly accepts lemonade from Jim.

Later on:

[Christine] “You’ll never guess what Jim had me doing this afternoon …”

[Jill] “That sounds intriguing!”

[Christine] “Not in the way you or me were thinking!”

Christine’s relieved, and quite tickled about Jim’s antics.

[Christine] “The poor boy in the tie shop this afternoon clearly thought he was bonkers”

Ach well. There’s nothing like a good old British farce to help us into Spring.

Alice is going to get an Easter egg

Jennifer is going to buy her one to cheer her up while she’s studying so hard.

Oh, and she also mentions she might get one for Ruairi.

Wee mite that he is.

Brian and cricket

I didn’t think that Brian was that interested in Ambridge Cricket club. But Jennifer seems to think the start of the season will help him relax.

She also mentioned that Jamie had asked Adam to help coach the youth team, but seems he’s too busy. Adam is going to ask a friend (in Yorkshire of all places, Christine was very surprised to hear … how odd of her).

The village shop aggressively sells to kids

Even Jill is in on the act.

She wants to get the Easter eggs out on display specifically before the school bus gets back in.

[Jill] “A suggestion from Lynda, she’s a great believer in pester power … not that that’d come to a surprise to anyone who knows her”

Brookfield back on an even keel in 3 years

So reckons the consultant.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

The new Brookfield – where cows don’t get a 2nd chance 18.03.12

The Archers Monday 18th March 2012

  • Does Ruth not realise she’s a hypocrite?
  • The Smallest Cheeseshop chain
  • Bridge Farm’s Interest
  • Emma let go without a care
  • Youth cricket ahoy
  • Ruth was using a pan!

Does Ruth not realise she’s a hypocrite?

Josh is working in the dairy with Ruth – before he has to go to school. And he has breakfast.

He’s showing ever more commitment (watch out Pip …).

Josh has been trying to work out what the new Brookfield system means. He’s a bit confused at what David was saying after David and Ruth had been to visit a farm already using that system.

[Josh] “He said the farmers get rid of the cows if they don’t get in calf the first time round”

[Ruth] “Well he’s working on the same milk contract he’s always had, so he needs to drive his costs down. AI is expensive, and so is keeping a dairy cow if she’s not in calf”

[Josh] “so it’s all about costs?”

[Ruth] “Well, it’s more positive than that, He’s breeding health and fertility into the herd”

[Josh] “So that means they’re more valuable? … and he’ll have more pregnant cattle than he needs every year so he can sell some?”

[Ruth] “Like we do now”

[Josh] “At better prices, because of the way he managed the herd … and that’s what we’ll be doing?”

[Ruth] “It’s what we do anyway mostly. We’ll have to be more systematic about it. No second chances and drive down the costs, that’s the plan”

Huh. Ruth sounds like Brian.

Think she can hear herself? She’ll not have a leg to stand on (or a happy cow to call as witness) when she ploughs back into protesting against the Super Dairy. Her new system is hardly a softly-softly approach to the cows.

Also sounds like Josh was worried about all of the recent debates and worry over Brookfield – especially as he’s noticed his parents arguing.

Ruth tells him everything (everything!) will be just fine …

The Smallest Cheeseshop chain

Sounds great!

Acting on Tom’s suggestion to go and see a cheese buyer while also going to see Sharon, Helen’s got an appointment with Bee Hardwick of The Smallest Cheeseshop chain.

Bridge Farm’s Interest

Pat and Tony’s interest only mortgage agreement is up soon (blimey – has that been 6 months already?). So, they need to decide if they go to repayment, or negotiate another period of interest only.

With Tony very much consigned to the sofa, Pat turns to Tom to help her make a decision.
They go through the figures, with Tom reckoning that the figures look good enough to go back onto repayment. Pat doesn’t seem convinced. And she also doesn’t want to do anything with Tony.

[Pat] “I don’t want him to feel we’re marginalising him”

But how to talk to Tony without stressing him?

More importantly, if Tony disagrees with Tom’s deductions, surely another father V son? With father coming off the worst.

Emma let go without a care

Laura at Lower Loxley (who she?) was absolutely fine about Emma handing her notice in. In fact, Laura didn’t even want Emma to work out her notice.

Emma didn’t seem to notice that Lower Loxley let her go without a thought.

That girl is either thick skinned, thick or just couldn’t care.

Youth cricket ahoy

From what David was saying, sounds like Jamie’s idea for youth cricket is a goer.

They now just need to find:

[David] “Someone willing to turn up week after week for the sheer love of the game”

Ruth was using a pan!

Be scared …

And can pizza be cooked in a pan?

Only Emma gets a Mother’s Day 18.03.12

(or so it would seem from the hidden secret microphones)

The Archers Sunday 18th March 2012

  • Helen has to go AWOL
  • Mothering Sunday
  • Emma wants to quit
  • Tom’s KISS method

Helen has to go AWOL

Kylie calls Helen to tell her that she’s spoken to Sharon.

[Kylie] “She said yes to meeting up with you”

Though Kylie had to work hard to get Sharon to agree, it would seem Sharon also wants some sort of resolution (closure, one would suppose).

[Kylie] “Mum said she’ll meet up with you, that’s all, so please don’t expect too much”

Helen later tells a delighted Tom.

[Helen] “Sharon’s agreed to meet, so she must have soften towards us … she wouldn’t let me drive all the way to Leeds just to shut the door in my face”

(hmm. Wouldn’t be so sure about that!)

Helen and Tom will also have to keep Helen’s trip secret from Tony and Pat, so that they don’t raise their hopes.

But, keeping a 5 hour round trip secret is going to be a bit tough.

Mothering Sunday

We only heard Emma’s mother’s day – either the secret hidden microphones were turned off everywhere else, or no-one else apart from Ed and his brood appreciate their mums.

Emma’s day went: woken up by kids and Ed (late, at 11am), card, flowers (freesias), breakfast in bed, bubble bath, a walk, then tea in a café.

[Ed] “I might not be able to buy you expensive presents, but I wanted you to know how much we appreciate you. I love you”

Aw. That’s sweet of Ed.

Emma wants to quit

As Keira is filling her bucket (with sand), Emma’s already looking depressed.

(she really knows how to show gratitude for Ed and the kids’ efforts)

She has an announcement.

[Emma] “I had a good think this morning … but I don’t know what you’re going to say … what would you say if I packed in my job at Lower Loxley?”

She claims it’s all about not being able to sort out childcare.

[Emma] “I just feel more and more stressed about it all … you think we can’t manage without that money?”

[Ed] “We’ll just have to see what we can cut back on. I’d rather do without than having you lying awake at night stressing”

Ed is worried about losing the money, but also about Emma not getting out of the house, away from the kids.

[Emma] “Wellies and worms, we can go to … outside play and it only costs a pound”

(not sure why Emma started talking like Yoda)

Ed did actually mean for Emma to also get adult company.

[Emma] “I feel like I wanna enjoy the kids while they’re still little”

Fair enough. Just so long as Emma does also accept that less work does indeed mean less income, so less to spend.

Princess Emma skint and happy about it?

I can’t see it.

Tom’s KISS method

Helen can’t work out how to go and see Sharon without having to tell Pat and Tony.

She reckons she can’t get Kirsty to cover for her (no – Kirsty would have to be told why), she can’t say she’s taking Henry out for the day (too long a journey for Henry), and she can’t say she’s going to see her plan Anne Baxter (from College) – Helen reckons she won’t be good enough at remembering her lies.

[Helen] “Belt and braces Tom. I’m not taking any chances”

[Tom] “With lies it's best to stick to the KISS method … keep it simple stupid … I’ve had my hairy moments!”

Then Tom has a moment of brilliant. What a rarity …

He suggests Helen books an appointment with one of the cheese buyers they met at the launch, who just happens to be close to where Sharon lives (Derby?).

[Helen] “Tom, you’re a genius!”

Well, it could be said that Tom’s ideal was a tad obvious, but as long as Helen is happy …

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Jim makes a play for Christine 16.03.12

(or so it seems)

The Archers Friday 16th March 2012

  • Now Tom’s harassing Helen
  • It’s all Greek to Helen
  • Hilary Noakes’ cockatoo is feeling better
  • More farmers sign up for the badger vaccination
  • Jim worries Christine
  • Kylie says yes

Now Tom’s harassing Helen

About phoning Kylie. Which she has done, but Kylie has called back as yet.

Does that boy never learn?

Leave folks be to do their best, in their own time.

Or, do it yourself.

It’s all Greek to Helen

Kylie does call Helen back. She’s been busy getting an essay in on time. One on Greek Tragedy.

[Helen] “Gosh, that sounds pretty hard!”

Helen really does need to get out more. She’s staring to sound like a bit of a dim, as well as a dull, young lady.

Hilary Noakes’ cockatoo is feeling better.

So Jill announces.

[Jill] “I’m glad Benson is getting better … he seems to bring out her softer side”

[Christine] “You mean she’s got one?”

More farmers sign up for the badger vaccination

Seems Oliver is managing to persuade more farmers to sign up.

Good man.

Jim worries Christine

[Jim] “Hmm, what a lovely scent … it’s you Christine. It must be your perfume”

Jill concurs that Christine is wearing nice perfume. But Jim takes it further.

[Jim] “Indeed it is. Most alluring”

Over coffee and cakes, Christine is too distracted to hear Jill talking about how glad she is that Brookfield is keeping its cows.

[Christine] “It’s Jim, I’m afraid … what he said … to me … he’s complimented me before, of course, on my cooking. He’s always praised my scones …

"the problem is what he said earlier wasn’t about my cooking, was it, it was about me … Jim’s never complimented me about anything like that before …

"never on anything personal or anything that you might call womanly about me … but today saying my perfume was alluring!”

[Jill, getting excited at the prospect of a romance] “Ooh Chris!”

[Christine] “No no. It’s not good Jill. I like Jim a lot of course I do. We get on well, we’re great friends. That’s as far as it goes for me. What if he’s started getting other ideas”

Ah well done Alan! You may have got Jim to do something for lent, but it could cost Jim one of his most precious friendships.

(I know – we all know they’ll sort it out)

Kylie says yes

During their phone call, Helen tells Kylie about Tony’s heart attack. Kylie shocked and worried to hear about it.

(she is a nice lass)

[Helen] “I’ll be totally honest. What he’s been thinking about is Rich … now what’s praying on dad’s mind is he has a grandson who doesn’t even know he exists … I’m sorry to load this onto you …”

She tells Kylie that she wants to arrange for Rich to get to know his grandparents properly. Kylie is at first worried that Helen wants her to tell Rich, but Helen is merely after a face-to-face with Sharon. Which will take Kylie to help arrange.

Later to Tom:

[Helen] “She said something I hadn’t even though of. About Ivy … she only realised how sad that made her feel at Ivy’s funeral”

[Tom] “Well that’s a shame. But helpful to use, I suppose”


Kylie’s agreed to talk to Sharon to at least meet with Helen.

Did Eddie slip, or was he pushed? 15.03.12

The Archers Thursday 15th March 2012

  • Eddie and Ben’s birthday
  • Josh and Phoebe?
  • Was Eddie pushed?
  • No booze for Eddie
  • Brian buys off Eddie
  • Celebration at Brookfield

Eddie and Ben’s birthday

Eddie gets bourdon from Clarrie, ben nearly manages to be late for school (Ben was on a computer game, Josh was on Facebook).

[David] “This is the problem with a birthday on a school day”

[Ben] “Before you start, it wasn’t my fault”

Course it wasn’t! It was Ruth and David’s!

Josh and Phoebe?

Seems it was Phoebe that Josh was messaging on Facebook.

A blossoming young attraction?

Ruth and David in-laws with Kate … that’d be interesting (much in the future).

Was Eddie pushed?

Despite Clarrie’s prediction that’d the protest at the Mart was losing steam, over 50 of them turned up today.

[Brian] “It’s all part of the plan to lull us into a false sense of security”

Eddie’s on crowd control (trying to make sure the farmers can get in with their stock), though they don’t seem to have very good security. Some of the protestors had earlier got into the Mart, and spooked the cattle with their banners.

(no need for that!)

Between the protestors shouting COWS EAT GRASS and FREE THE AMBRIDGE COW, and booing when they saw Brian, Eddie wads wading in to try and keep the road into the Mart clear.

Then. Disaster.

[Kirsty] “LOOK OUT!”

Eddie’s on the ground, and looks to have taken a nasty bump to the head.

Kirsty takes care of him while David (who’d popped by the Mart) calls an ambulance, and Brian lends his coat for Eddie to lay his head on.

[Kirsty] “He just went down. It was went that farmer’s truck pulled out …”

[Brian] “The one your cohorts stopped!”

But – no one say how Eddie came to bump his head.

Later on, the good news is that Eddie didn’t have a fracture.

[Josh] “Whatever, he’s going to look like he’s been in a fight tomorrow”

The Police are also involved. Was Eddie pushed? Did one of the farmer’s vehicles clip him?

No booze for Eddie

Despite having had to go to hospital, Eddie was back out that night with Clarrie at The Bull.

[Clarrie] “Yeah, apart from looking like you’re run into a wall”

[Eddie] “Eh, but it’s me birthday!”

But, Eddie’s horrified to be told by Clarrie that he cannot drink. Even if Mike and Neil are going to pop in, and even if he already has a few pints behind the bar.

[Eddie] “Some bloomin’ birthday this is!”

Brian buys off Eddie


Brian pops into The Bull to check Eddie is okay.

[Brian] “You're absolutely sure … you weren’t pushed by one of the demonstrators?”

Eddie reckons not. And that he also wasn’t clipped by a vehicle. He’s sure he just slipped.

[Eddie] “And I won’t be going to none of them personal injury lawyers, don’t you worry”

Brian sounds relieved about that. he also drags out (what sounded like) a fair few notes for Eddie. Money for the taxi back to the Mart to get his van. And a few more for another night out with Clarrie.

Eddie gratefully takes it.

Brian should be ashamed of himself. All he’s thinking about is yet worse PR.

Celebration at Brookfield

Ben’s birthday (he’s 10 today) is a bit overshadowed by the cows.

During Ben’s birthday tea, the first toast is from Josh to the cows (as they’re definitely staying at Brookfield).

The next is from Pip to the sheep (who also stay to keep money coming in while they change their dairy system).

The third is from Ben to Tigg (aw!)

But the fourth is from Ruth to Ben.

[David] “To Ben and to Brookfield!”

Well, at least Ben doesn’t mind where he sits in his family order of priorities.

Tom wants Rich in the family 14.02.12

The Archers Wednesday 14th March 2012

  • Jamie and Natalie are back
  • Youth Cricket
  • Joe’s a cheeky gossip
  • Helen’s sacking Brian
  • Tony is brooding
  • Amy has a boyfriend
  • Tom does a u-turn

Jamie and Natalie are back

Still together, and shopping for tops for Natalie.

Credit to Jamie – he is very patient while she chooses between plain or stripy.

Youth Cricket

Jamie’s telling Natalie that Alistair has asked him again to play cricket for Ambridge.

[Jamie] “Do I really want to spent all my evening and weekends in the summer with a ,load of old blokes, when I could be with you?”

Natalie points out that he does like cricket, and that Sid would have been proud of him to do so.

(Natalie seems like a good ‘un again!)

Later, Jamie has a plan. He’s going to see if Ambridge can put on youth nights, so that the younger chaps can practice together away from the auld yins.

He’s especially thinking of his mate Marty.

Seems Marty is depressed. He’s having to repeat a year at school, and hasn’t made any pals.

[Natalie] “This all Steve’s fault. If Marty hadn’t looked up to that stupid dork in the first place!”

Joe’s a cheeky gossip

But hasn’t agreed to give it up for lent.

He told Chris about Jim and Vicky

[Chris] “Mike said he’d been ogling Vicky … and that he said she was fat”

Naughty Joe! That fall out should have finished when Joe made Jim and Mike shake.

Helen’s sacking Brian

Well, more ‘laying off’ than sacking. She reckons Pat will have more time next week to help her with the veg boxes, so Brian is surplus to requirements.

Tony is brooding

Having more time to sit and think, Tony tells Tom what he’s been pondering:

[Tony] “I sit here Tom, and I wonder what he’s doing, Rich. What’s he up to? … I knew I had to make it happen, and when we saw him in Leeds, John’s grin, John’s eyes, just that look about it … all she wanted, all I wanted to do, was hug him. Hug him tight and say I’m your granddad … I knew I had to be strong for her, to get her through it … I had to keep going, keep mum going … and now that’s it. We’ve had it. Had our contact. We might never see him again”

Amy has a boyfriend

Which knackers Alice’s (very odd) plan to match her up with a male model.

Seems Amy is seeing someone called Karl, who is a few years older, works in Felpersham and she doesn’t want to introduce him to anyone else as yet.

[Alice] “She doesn’t want to tempt fate …”

Or interfering mates like Alice!

Tom does a u-turn

After speaking to Tony, Tom sits down with Helen:

[Tom] “He suddenly, out of nowhere, started talking about Rich”

[Helen] “Where did that come from?”

(Tom just said. Nowhere)

The penny has finally dropped for Tom. He now understands that after Tony had seen Rich, he so desperately wanted to tell Rich that he and Pat are his grandparents. But, part of Tony’s stress after was trying to stay strong and realistic for Pat.

[Helen] “Mum does realise he did that for her”

[Tom] “It made me wonder. If, maybe, we could do something about it”

So he wants Helen to talk to Kylie. Helen made friends with her when she was last down (though that’s a poor excuse for not doing it himself, I reckon)

[Tom] “I think what dad wasn’t saying is that … he could have died Helen, and he’d have never got to know Rich and Rich would have never known who he was … so, will you give her a call, kylie … explain what’s happened to dad and ask Kylie to try and make Sharon to see how important it is”

[Helen] “Suppose it’s worth a try”

[Tom] “Helen, we’re lucky to still have dad, I think it’s worth doing. For him”

Odds-on for Rich being at the Bridge Farm Christmas 2012 table.

The cows shall stay at Brookfield! 13.03.12

The Archers Tuesday 13th March 2012

  • Tom realising Farming isn’t just pigs playing footy?
  • Why does Pip get paid?
  • David’s perturbed it’s a young woman
  • Mike thinks Jim’s playing for his woman
  • The end of the beginning for Brookfield

Tom realising Farming isn’t just pigs playing footy?

The word on the fields is that Tom’s realising how much work it is to keep Bridge Farm bumbling along. The admin is especially getting to him.

He hasn’t had a clue the sheer volume of work Tony had to do.

[Ruth] “Well you don’t until you actually run a farm yourself”

Why does Pip get paid?

Tom’s insisted on paying Pip.

Why not David and Brian?

Bit unfair, I reckon.

David’s perturbed it’s a young woman

David and Ruth are waiting for their block calving consultant to arrive at Brookfield.

[Ruth] “It looks like a woman driving, not a bloke”

[David] “She’s probably lost”

Ruth started it, but David dug himself a whole. When she pulled him up on assuming that the woman couldn’t be the consultant (she’d assumed that the consultant wouldn’t be a woman because they were expecting someone called Rob), he started waffling on about women especially getting lost because of Sat Navs.

Turns out the woman is the Consultant. Rob couldn’t make it.

[Lisa] “And I’ll put my wellies on … tee hee Lisa Bradshaw”

(the ‘tee hee’ bit is because she was a bit giggly)

[David] “Ruth, do you think she’s going to be okay … she’s not my idea of a consultant. How old do you think she is?”

Hmm. He also meant that it’s not really a job for a woman …

Mike thinks Jim’s playing for his woman

[Mike] “I got a bone to pick with you … what do you mean by offending my wife? … how long you been eyeing her up?”

[Jim] “Vicky?!? I’m sorry Mike, but I have no idea what you mean”

[Mike] “Oh pull the other one. You must have been ogling her for months, just biding your time for the right moment you could make your sleazy remarks which, by the way, she ain't happy about and in case you hadn’t gathered, neither am I!”

As they’re at the Community Orchard, with Joe, all you can here for a bit is Jim trying to waffle on normally, with Mike angrily digging in the background (honestly, you could hear it was angry digging!).

But Jim can’t taker Mike’s sulk.

[Jim] “For the hundredth time, when I said that Vicky was looking very slim, I meant it as a compliment. Pure and simple.”

[Mike] “Oh did you/”

[Jim] “Yes, and hand on heart I promise you mike, I had not been eyeing her up over the preceding months … and by complimenting her on her appearance yesterday, I most certainly did not mean to imply nor ever would that she previously had been fat, overweight, stout, plump or even chubby …”

[Mike] “Chubby!”

[Jim] “I like and respect Vicky, and I’m very sorry if I've offended her”

[Mike] “Well you have, Insulted her even … she’s very upset …”

[Joe] “Come on Mike, the prof here would never insult a lady”

[Jim] “My remark was well intentioned and meant as a genuine compliment”

As Jim points out, even Susan has agreed that Jim wasn’t trying to have his wicked way with Vicky. Mike’s still not convinced.

[Mike] “I suppose I got no option but to take your word for it Jim”

And Joe makes them shake on it.

[Mike] “But I got to say this Jim, but for an educated bloke, you want to be a bit more careful with what you say, and weight your words better …”

Jim agrees. After Mike has left:

[Jim] “I have to say that in view of the supposed insult, the idea of weighting my words is perhaps not the best phrase he could have chosen, but I wasn’t going to say that to him!”

So an “innocent compliment” gone bad.

Surely more of this to come …

The end of the beginning for Brookfield

Lisa explains to David and Ruth that there’s a glut of milk late Spring and Summer – so their plan will mean milk ‘off season’. Potentially at a higher premium, I suppose.

They’ll need to expand their milking parlour and winter housing when they also expand their herd.

And Lisa says that their sheep can stay – they’ll be essential to income while their new milking system gets up and running, as will be their beef herd

(so they can please Pip and Josh at the same time)

All in all it’s good news.

[Lisa] “Workable and practical way forward”

And she’ll even do their cashflow for them.

[David] “How ol … hot about some coffee”

(he’s still obsessed!)

Once Lisa has left:

[David] “Okay, well I take back all I said, or managed not to say”

[Ruth] “That she was some dizzy girl straight out of college!”

Though she seemed a bit dizzy, Lisa is more than qualified to help Brookfield. Ruth and David reckons she is exactly what Pip will be like in a few years.

[Ruth] “Lovely and confident with it”

So it’s all systems go. And they need to look at reseeding again. This time cocksfoot, red and white clover, burnet, chicory, timothy and fescue.

[David] “What a relief “

[Ruth] “This isn’t the end David, you know we’ve got a long way to go”

[David] “Maybe this it’s the end of the beginning”

So all’s well.


Where’s the £20,000 coming from for the slurry tank?

And, forgive me, but isn’t Brookfield now going to be having more cows in their shed for longer?

Ruth = not a leg to stand on regarding the Super Dairy?

Jim spooks Vicky 12.03.12

The Archers Monday 12th March 2012

  • Tracey has four kids
  • Helen never made mention of nappies
  • Pat’s a crusader without even trying
  • Keira’s bored of being a baby
  • Jim’s threesome
  • Is that Brian under the tractor?
  • Emma appreciates the Doll House
  • Hilary Noakes’ cockatoo is ill
  • Jim has spooked Vicky

Tracey has four kids

Counting her dad and Gary.

Though Emma was looking to her for some (probably free) babysitting, Tracey reckons she already has her hands full.

Emma is also furious to learn that Tracey also has the cheek to want to find a job – and had the nerve to see if Emma could babysit for her when she not at Lower Loxley in the afternoons.

Horrendous! How dare the world not revolve around Emma! Very surprised she’s still speaking to Clarrie after Clarrie went back to her job at Bridge Farm.

Anyhoo – point is that Emma can’t get proper babysitting sorted.

How long before she’s forced to ask Nic?

Helen never made mention of nappies

So Brian was fibbing when he said he volunteered Jennifer to do the veg box recipes because of Helen:

[Brian] “I’m sorry I dropped you in it but I had to stop Helen talking about Henry and his nappies somehow”

Pat’s a crusader without even trying

Brian’s bemoaning the fact that Pat’s petition against the Super Dairy is getting more and more signatures, when Pat obviously hasn’t been focusing on her campaign while Tony is ill.

[Brian] “Here’s me packing their veg boxes, meanwhile her campaign is taking on a life of its own and is threating to stiff my business. It’s a funny old world”

He’s not as calm when it comes to the protestors at the Mart. They’re “loonies” who don’t understand anything.

Keira’s bored of being a baby

So says Susan. Keira’s started walking, which had made Keira very happy.

[Susan] “Bored of being a baby. She’s very bright, you see”

Jim’s threesome

Jim comes into the shop while Vicky and Susan are chatting.

[Jim] “What a bevy of beauty! You're both looking particularly delightful today, if I may say so … is that a new jumper Susan?”

It’s not, but Vicky’s is.

Jim then compliments (ah ha!) Vicky on the colours of said top being delightful, and that she’s looking “trim and slimmer”.


Jim’s not very good at this. He’s coming over as a bit of a perv AND you never (ever) mention a woman’s weight.

Whether it be a compliment or not.

Is that Brian under the tractor?

Yes it was.

Which gave Jennifer a fright. Surely that’s something Jeff could do (so she says).

He’s just trying to get his mind off of the folks who are against the Super Dairy.

Seems Lord Donald Eldberry has “fallen” for the anti-brigade, and has written to Brian as a result.

[Brian] “I’ve got councillors on the phone wittering about objections their constituents have raised, not to mention pen pushers in the planning department!

[Jennifer] “Calm down. I can practically see your blood pressure rising”

Jennifer admits that she’s worried Brian is going to do a Tony and collapse with a heart attack.

[Brian] “Oh, is this why we’ve been having all that weird food … mackerel and lentils … oh darling, you won’t get rid of me that easily. But any more lentils, you just might!”

Emma appreciates the Doll House

[Emma] “It's going to be gorgeous dad!”


That’s not like Emma to be thankful for the effort someone else has gone to for her (well, Keira).

A slight thaw?

Hilary Noakes’ cockatoo is ill

Aw – that’s a shame.

(and I do mean that!).

Susan warns Emma to make sure George doesn’t ask Hilary about her cockatoo as a result. Seems George is fascinated about it, but Hilary can’t cope talking about it (him?) at the moment.

It’s been losing weight and feathers, and has had swabs taken.

[Susan] “Don’t let George say anything, it’ll only burst her into tears!”

Neil warns Susan that she’s verging on gossip (which she had given up for lent).

[Susan] “That was not gossip. That was a point of information to Emma … helpful not harmful!”

Jim has spooked Vicky

Vicky’s round visiting Susan and Neil. She’s a bit perplexed.

[Vicky] “It’s what Jim said in the shop … what he said to me about looking very trim … what did he mean ... well is he saying I've lost weight? Cause if so, how am I supposed to take it? Is he saying I was fat before .… that I looked fat then … what do you think Neil?”

[Neil] “Me?!?”

[Vicky] “Well you’re a man. If you tell someone she’s looking very trim are you saying she’s lost weight ?”

[Neil] “Erm, I don’t think I’ve ever said that to anyone, so I’m sorry Vicky I can’t be of much help”

[Susan, saving Neil] “I just thought it was a compliment … he said all that about me and my jumper, then he moved onto you. I’m sure it was a compliment”

[Vicky] “So why didn’t he just stick to saying my new top suited me or something. Nah, I’m sorry Susan. I’m not convinced”

Oh dear.

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Alice has gone a bit Fallon 11.03.12

The Archers Sunday 11th March 2012
  • 3 words for Tom
  • Helen makes a joke
  • Why can’t Helen move pig arks?
  • Jazzer has a new lassie in sight
  • Alice’s iron is knackered
  • Has Jennifer changed her tune about Christopher?
  • Tony’s too quiet
  • Charity fashion show for ‘Africa’
  • Why does Alice want Amy to have a boyfriend?

3 words for Tom

[Helen] “tea and toast”


Seems to make Tom happy enough.

(though hearing him munch it wasn’t very pretty)

Helen makes a joke

Helen and Tom are talking about creating more poly tunnels to be able to grow and sell more produce.

Helen reckons the packaging has to be spot on. Local produce. Organic. And British.

[Helen] “It’s really important to flag that up, literally … union jacks on every crate”

She did chuckle when she said it, so Helen isn’t completely clueless.

Tom also mentioned something about talking to a bloke about a business loan.


When was that decided?

Does Bridge Farm need more debt?

Tony won’t be very calm when he hears about that.

Why can’t Helen move pig arks?

Tom’s feeling overworked, so Helen offers to help.

[Tom] “Come on, I’m not going to get you moving pig arks, am I?”

Why not?

Helen has always struck me as a fairly robust and healthy young filly.

Jazzer has a new lassie in sight

Poor lassie.

Seems he’s more than happy to take on extra work from Tom.

[Tom] “He was quite keen to do more hours. He’s got some new woman to impress”

[Helen] “Good old Jazzer. Always the right priorities”

Poor Helen. She really doesn’t get that there’s more to life than Bridge Farm …

Alice’s iron is knackered

[Alice] “It just went out as soon as I switched it on”

Has Jennifer changed her tune about Christopher?

She actually sounds fairly impressed that Alice and Chris have managed to save, and Chris is now about to have his own business.

Hard work outweighs a lack of blue blood (which neither Jennifer nor Brian have anyhoo).

Tony’s too quiet

Tony’s made it out of the yard. He wants some proper air (which you seemingly can’t get in the yard), but he’s chased just as quickly back home again in case he is over doing it and gets a chill.

(poor Tony. He isn't ancient as yet)

Pat’s feeling quite philosophical.

[Pat] “It brings it home to you, doesn’t it? What loving someone really is”

Later on, Tony’s not hungry enough to finish his pudding. He feels like he’s not doing enough to build up a hunger. He takes himself off to watch the rugby, with pat promising to take his a cup of tea during half time.

Pat’s guilt resurrects itself.

[Pat] “All that time, from the minute I found out about Rich, I was nothing but selfish”

Helen thinks Pat’s guilt over Rich comes from the overreaction she (Helen) and Tom had.

Pat does not concur.

[Pat] “Never gave dad’s feelings a moment’s thought … He was trying to protect me. He was worried about my health … I didn’t allow him to vent”

But Helen (and the doctor) reckon it was high cholesterol and the like that caused Tony’s heart attack.

[Helen] “You might as well say that I’m to blame … these things build up don’t they … if you’re looking for stress factors, then it’s got to be the e.coli”

[Pat] “I’ll never take him for granted again Helen … I know I have in the past just because he’s quieter than I am”

[Helen] “He’s quieter than all of us”

[Pat] “It his quietness that … he gives me,. All of us, so much support. Just knowing he’s there. He’s been too easy to ignore Helen. I’m not going to do that anymore. I’m going to listen to him. What he wants”

[Helen] “I know mum. We all will”


At last, they’re actually going to listen to Tony. The trick is to make sure Tom also follows suit.

Charity fashion show for ‘Africa’

How very 1980s, and oddly quite politically incorrect for Alice.

Why does Alice want Amy to have a boyfriend?

It’s just as odd as Fallon being desperate to make Kirsty and Rhys get together.

[Alice] “I’m going to introduce her to one of the more lush models … Joel”

[Jennifer] “That’s up to Amy. Actually, does she want a boyfriend?”

[Alice] “Of course she does. She’s not going to meet many men doing her job is she, well not available ones anyway”

[Jennifer] “She’s always struck me as a very independent young woman, just because being in a couple suits you and Christopher darling, you can’t assume that everyone wants to be paired off at your age …Dear me Alice, you sound like my granny!”

[Alice] “You’ll be sorry you doubted me when you’re buying your new hat”

How odd.

Why would Alice be scoring any points by getting Amy a boyfriend?

Saturday, 10 March 2012

Ambridge Organics/Tom Archer’s launch part deux 09.03.12

The Archers Friday 9th March 2012

  • The cheese is loaded and ready to go
  • Jim sucks up to Shula
  • The launch is a success
  • Lily was bell ringing again
  • Seeds for Britain in Bloom
  • The difference between flattery and a compliment
  • Anyone else thought Tony had done a Phil?

The cheese is loaded and ready to go

Steady on Helen!

Tom’s already at the café, Helen and Pat are more or less ready to go (dropping Henry off at Nic’s on the way), so they’re just waiting on Tony.

But Tony appears in his dressing gown.

[Tony] “I didn’t have such a good night. Didn’t sleep too well … I feel fine otherwise, just a bit washed out. So maybe you were right. I’d be better to stay at home and have a quiet day”

Jim sucks up to Shula

He didn’t seem to have a purpose in going round to see Shula, as she was getting ready to head out with Topper. Who is being a bit frisky today (Topper, not Jim. Well, maybe Jim as well, but he didn’t mention it).

[Shula] “He’s young. Full of the joys”

[Jim] “He seems to know who is boss!”

They chat about Shula making the decision to buy Topper, despite Alistair’s protests.

[Jim] “Alistair should have known better than to argue … after all, you ... you … when it comes to horses, you know what’s best … I’m sure your judgement is second to none”

Shula was a bit spooked …

The launch is a success

It sounds packed, with people travelling from all over. There is even “cheese people” from Derbyshire,

[Pat] “They’re all being so positive, Saying such nice things”

[Tom] “That chef from that Birmingham caterers said my pork stir fry was, quote, delicious”

[Helen] “High fives all round then!”

Lily was bell ringing again

Yesterday. Seems she really likes it.

Seeds for Britain in Bloom

Alan’s been buying them in, so he tells Shula.

(again – did I miss the big reconciliation between Alan and Shula?)

Lynda has also printed off a leaflet called The Art of seed Propagation to help when planting.

[Shula] “Is there an art to using a propagator?”

[Alan] “And she’s been trying to bulk buy scarlet geraniums”

Complete hedonism!

The difference between flattery and a compliment

Shula happened to mention to Alan that Jim had paid her a compliment.

Aha! Compliment! That’s what Jim was up to.

[Jim] “Alan, when I make a resolution, I kept it … as from today, Shula is my first success … that’s one satisfied customer”

[Alan] “Little surprised, maybe”

[Jim] “Well, Shula and I, well, you know, it’s not always easy being a father in law … still once I decided, there was no messing about. Straight in at the deep end. Though I have to say it was quite a tricky one to hit the rights notes you know, I had to out in some careful thought”

[Alan] “And I assume when you said it you meant it …”

[Jim] “Alan! Of course I meant it. If I’d been at all insincere it would have been flattery, not a compliment!”

Seems Jim’s plan is to give compliments as and when the chance arises. “Discreet opportunism” he calls it.

But Jim will be keeping a strict record, including who, where, when, what and a witness.

That’s a bit over the top.

Anyone else thought Tony had done a Phil?

I think that’s what the folks who place the secret microphones wanted us to think.

Tony’s left home alone.

Pat got a missed call from David, who’d been helping out at Home Farm. Pat, Tom and Helen are a bit worried.

Turns out David was just calling to say everything was fine.

[Helen] “I wish he’d just texted you!”

When they later get home, they can hear the TV is on.

Uh oh … just like Phil being left alone, for Jill to get back with Christine to the sound of a record and Phil very much departed …

But not to worry.

We could hear Tony breathing. He was just having a nap.

Cheeky secret microphone placing people.