Ruth calls from hospital – Granny Heather is talking and “more like herself”. Ruth is upset about missing Open Farm. David moans on about Berrow Farm muscling in on the day – nicking Tom’s pig roast, Adam’s big combine and the Bull bar. Rex (the nice Fairbrother brother) arrives at Brookfield to help out

    Late-thirties Kate calls twenty-something Toby Fairbrother – she sounds quite keen to see him again. Adam sees her and accuses her of avoiding Brian, angry about the purple sheep-dyed pool.

    Meanwhile, at Berrow Farm, Helen is being put through her (rather halting) ‘eco’ presentation by the Dark Lord. Charlie is there, too. “We’ll be counting on you, Helen.” She’s pretty nervous.

    Over at Brookfield, “there’s been a bit of a lull.” David is bitter about Berrow Farm. Kate arrives and quizzes Rex about Toby. Toby thinks he might be at Berrow Farm.

    At Berrow Farm, Helen struggles through her solar array presentation, but Justin and Charlie are very pleased about the day. Stalking Kate turns up, still on the Toby hunt. “I’m bored,” says the petulant, close to forty-something teenager.

    Brookfield’s day is a bit of a wash-out. “We can’t match BL’s marketing.”

    At the Berrow Farm after-show party, Charlie toasts Helen – he thinks she went down pretty well. Kate has a go at Helen about her working for The Man. Adam is unhappy about this.

    Vicky and Bethany make a rare appearance. They are looking forward to the move to Brum and want Phoebe to come and stay. Later, she has a pop at Mike for not clearing out the shed. “Time’s running out, you’ll have to get a move on.”

    Finally, Brian corners Kate and wants her to scrub the (now expensively drained) swimming pool and surround. ‘It looks like some kind of industrial accident.” “It wasn’t me – it was Toby Fairbrother.” Brian threatens to throw Kate out if she doesn’t clean the pool. Phoebe says she will do it. They work ‘sort of’ together. Kate wants to move into the holiday cottage on Friday and have a ‘house-cleansing’ ceremony and party.

    Adam and Ed are putting up a fence. Mixed arable is the way forward and should stop the erosion fussures that the flood caused from happening again. Brian is confused and wooried about Adam’s clear-eyes zeal for all things organic and sustainabale. “We’ve already got one flaky hippy in the family, we don’t need another. – he doesn’t want Home Farm “turned into a Medieval theme park.”

    Deep Pip is out jogging and meets Adam, worming sheep. Lovely. Pip catches Adam up on jobs, sick grannies, and the disaster of Open Farm Sunday. Adam tries to sell Pip on his mixed arable, deep soil care vision and rails against tech farming. Charlie calls and wants to take Adam for lunch at the Fox in Edgley. He turns up and continues to drone on about tech farming being a “long term ecological disaster.” He accuses BL of “selective myopia.”

    Lynda is at Brookfield and meets Alice (hi, Alice) for a committee meeting about the fete. Jill turns up – Jim and Kenton aren’t coming AND the council will be digging up the village for new drainage over most of the Summer, including the dates for the fete. “We may have to face up to it – there won’t be an Ambridge Fete this year.”

    Jill, Peggy and Nervous Christine are out on a garden visit. Chris still seems out of sorts and upset about the Woodbine raid. Jill and Peggy gang up together to try and keep Chris out of the Laurels Death Camp. Chris is still traumatized about the flood and (reaching way back) the fire at the police house. After the trip, Jill and Peggy think they have managed to cheer Christine up, but don’t think they have dissuaded her from the Death Camp idea.

    Mike is back at his shed with Neil and Eddie, trying to clear it before Vicky’s deadline. Eddie (always with an eye on the main prize) kindly agrees to take anything useful. How kind. There’s netting, electric fencing, posts, bits of barbed wire. “Oh, there’s a full tin of creosote.” They find a Mike-designed rat trap, which he proudly shows off, but doesn’t seem to have caught many rats. Eddie is so pleased with his haul that he wants to meet later at the Cider Club. There’s a great deal of reminiscing - “Memories, eh?” Mike gets quite maudlin. “Losing my farm…losing Betty…my depression.” Cheery soul, Mike. He will be missed, especially by Neil –the village’s other cheery soul.

    Rex wakes a hung-over Toby up. He’s made the Echo – there’s a photograph of Toby jumping in Brain’s pool in his underwear. Rex berates his brother about blackening their good name before they’ve even settled in the area. “It’s like what happened in Brighton all over again.” What happened in Brighton?

    Jennifer is horrified about the photograph in the Echo and tears strips off Kate for the bad publicity. Kate is busy trying to orgainise her “Native American Lodge Blessing” Toby finally calls Kate and tries to apologise for the pool dying. “I had a really good time on Friday,” breathes Kate.

    Susan in the shop is upset about the lack of the fete and the loss of Mike and Vicky when they move to Birmingham. Susan wants to organise a leaving party for Mike. Later, she makes plans for a cocktail party “a real classy occasion.” There’s talk of canapes

    Toby reluctantly meets Kate for drinks and wriggles out of the house-warming/blessing. Rex arrives with bad news – they’ve been out-bid on their latest offer and makes Toby promise to behave.

    At Home Farm, Kate has taken over the kitchen, preparing food for her house cleansing party. Phoebe reluctantly helps and Brain steers clear and heads for a bath. There’s bits of tree and herbs which she needs for the cleansing ceremony. At the ceremony/party, Phoebe notices that Kate has snaffled bottles of Brian’s best vintage burgundy and that there are lots of no-shows. Kate makes everyone clap and she burns her twigs and herbs to cleanse the house. The smoke makes everyone cough and then sets off the smoke detector, which is linked to a system which alerts Home Farm. Brian is in his bath.

    Sunset at Brookfield and Deep Pip and David overlook contented cows and rich grazing. Pip re-affirms her commitment to the place and vows to come back once she’s seen a bit fo the world.

    Brian storms into the cottage in his dressing gown, furious. Drunk Kate tells him to ‘chill’. He spots his finest burgundy and sort of deflates – he leaves, he’s had enough followed by a disgusted Phoebe.


The Week In Ambridge

The Week In Ambridge

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I am a new listener to The Archers - my Mother started me at birth, so I have only been listening for 46 years. Apologies if I get things wrong.

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