The week begins with Bret banging away at the Fairbrother’s Patented Automatic Egg Mobile House. Deep Pip is charged with transporting it. Toby and Rex are thrilled with it, but Pip is stressed about Hunky Mathew. Toby doesn’t help matters by suggesting that Mathew is quite so Hunky that maybe he’s found someone else in Cumbria. Toby would be very keen to drive a wedge between those two, if only to help out Rex. On the road, “The Good Life meets Dr. Who” is Carol’s take on the magnificent F.P.A.E.M.H. After the delivery, Bert heads to Carol’s garden to work. Sensitive Carol is aware that it’s the first anniversary of Freda’s demise. Carol relates Lynda’s plans for her new garden to reflect the village’s loss and determination during the Great Flood. “Typical of that woman,” says Bert, unhappy about Lynda’s appropriation of the village’s tragedy. “Nobody suffered like me – she even got her dog back.”

    At Grange Farm, Eddie and Joe are banging away at the shepherd’s hunt for Lynda, using an old pasting table as a day bed. “It looks a bit flimsy.” “She loves all that recycling” Old Joe manages to let slip about Eddie’s surprise party. Eddie is thrilled.

    Helen was sleep-walking. Stress? The next morning, the Evil One tries to convince her that she was like “something out of a horror movie”, looming over the Test Tube Kid and saying terrible things. She wasn’t. He’s managed to get her a psychiatry appointment for the same day. After, Helen is offered cognitive behavioural therapy and anti-depressants. “I’m just so lost.” “Darling, you’re ill.” YOU’RE NOT!!!

    Deep Pip and Ruth are moving the new cows about, getting them used to the milking shed.

    Brian is still irked about Lillian’s continued presence at Home Farm. Jennifer sees Lynda, who is still full of plans for her new garden. Brian arrives, chuffed as he’s been made chair of Borchester Land again. Brian is so pleased with himself, that Lynda manages to rope him into appearing at her Pageant. Jennifer is suspicious of Justin’s motivation in making Brian chair. That evening, at a Pageant rehearsal, Brian is cast as Squire George, but is uneasy about Justin being cast as the baddie. Perceptive Jim sees a political undercurrent in Lynda’s casting.

    Deep Pip is brought a slice of Josh’s birthday cake by Jill. Pip is moping about Hunky Mathew and Jill offers her usual bland platitudes.

    At the shop, Shula is served Borchester Blue by the Dark Lord whilst Helen is made to sit still and is practically forbidden from speaking by her evil overlord. Pat turns up and wants to take Helen for tea. Helen heads to the Tearoom to try and catch Kirsty, Fallon says she’s out. Helen waits, drinking camomile tea. Fallon asks her is she’s looking forward the Grundy Barn Dance. Helen knows nothing about it, even though Fallon is sure that they’ve been invited. The Evil One turns up and whisks Helen away - Cruella has driven down to take her back to the jail that is Blossom Hill. Rob tells Pat about the psychiatrist visit.

    Dr. Locke is jogging. Nobody else jogs in Ambridge. He refers to the F.P.A.E.M.H. as “Howl’s Moving Castle.” Shula invites him to Easter lunch.

    Later, Rob gets into bed with Helen and further twists things. “You’re feeling guilty about hitting me, aren’t you darling?” Then, it sounds like he forces himself on her. GET OUT, HELEN. Shouting at the radio doesn’t seem to work. The next morning, Rob takes Cruella out for the day and Helen breaks down after they leave. There’s a knock at the door. It’s Kirsty, finding Helen in tears. “Helen – what on earth’s going on?” “Oh, Kirsty,” sobs Helen. It all comes out – finally, although Helen still thinks it’s all her fault. Kirsty is horrified that Rob has hit Helen. “You should tell someone about what Rob’s done to you.” Helen swears her to secrecy.

    Cruella and her dark spawn, having told Helen that they were off to see the sights of Borchester, are actually out visiting Rob’s old Prep School to see if they will take the Pyrex Kid. “What a wonderful opportunity for Henry.” It seems to be a done deal that the poor kid is going to get shipped off.

    The estranged Alf turns up at Grange Farm. Clarrie has invited him to Eddie’s birthday. It’s a bit stilted, but the brothers embrace finally. Alf is impressed with the state of Grange Farm, “It’s like a palace.” Given his criminal past, Clarrie warns him about nicking stuff. Joe is all tearful to see his almost-forgotten son. Then they get wired into the cider.

    Having been sworn to secrecy, Kirsty skips off and calls someone official-sounding about her concerns regarding Helen. Whoever it is that she is speaking to sounds very sympathetic and as concerned as Kirsty. It sounds like finally, things might be turning round.

    It’s Eddie’s 65th birthday Barn Dance. Alf gets pissed and Wayne brings his guitar. It’s a great night. Wayne is a star and has written a ‘song’ especially for Eddie called “The Prince of Grundy World.” Eddie makes a speech, pleased to be surrounded by his family but reserves his best for this wife. “I love you, Clarrie.”


The Week In Ambridge

The Week In Ambridge

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Welcome to my blog

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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