Period drama series. Joyce, Nancy, Annie and Bea join the Women's Land Army. Bea becomes enthralled by a charming GI, while Nancy tries to get closer to Lord Hoxley.
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On the very beginning of the war, one of Germany's principle aims has been Britain's starvation.
Yet today, Britain can claim to be the best fed country in Europe, and girls as we know are playing their
part on the land just as faithfully as in the workshops, and although a picture of farming
may look like a holiday, believe me, it's one of the toughest war jobs there is.
The Women's Land Army, and farmers all over Britain, have fought
and are still fighting their hardest to win the battle of supplies.
When the last battle has been won, that's a fact we mustn't forget.
Oh, just smell that fresh air!
Mmm, isn't it awful? Oh.
-Thank you, General.
I won't tell anyone.
Well, where's he going?
You didn't expect him to carry them all the way to the farm, did you?
Stay and get the later train. We could have two more hours together.
Two more hours of you bending my ear?
You can't wait to get away, can you?
You'd never have spoken to me like this before you joined up.
Shame you didn't stand up to your father the same way.
I'm grateful that you helped us.
But... we need to talk about this, Harry.
I've said all I'm going to say, Annie.
I mean it.
Isn't someone supposed to collect our bags?
They're supposed to collect us.
-We carry our own bags.
-Do you think he'll be dishy?
Not unless Annie Barratt's a man, no.
Now according to this, Helmstead is only two miles away, so we could just walk.
You expect me to lug all this, in these heels?
For goodness' sake.
Where you going... Oh!
-Aren't you supposed to be meeting some girls?
-This is more important.
You've got to be strong, Annie.
You know where I'm going, what I'm heading into.
Yet you waste money dragging me up here to tell me there's no baby.
I'm sorry if I've failed you.
Promise me you'll write.
-I don't know where I'll be.
Take care of yourself.
It's a beautiful day.
We'll sleep well tonight.
Well, it would help if there were some signs or something.
What, and give the Germans directions?
Come on, it can't be far now.
Is it a Spitfire?
I can't see.
Enemy plane, take cover!
Hold your positions!
He's coming around!
Keep in position!
Come back! Nancy!
Get down, woman!
Hold your fire!
Are you all right?
My outfit... it's ruined.
Chose a bad day for a walk in the country, ladies.
-We're looking for the Manor House.
-We're joining the land girls.
Oh. Well, I'll take you there.
Look at me. I'm covered in mud.
Well, better get used to that.
Brought you two more soft-handed city girls.
It's like a castle.
Looks like we've landed on our feet.
Maybe this isn't going to be so bad after all.
Oh, er, Nancy Morrell and Jean...
Joyce... Fisher. Joyce Fisher.
Nice to meet you. I'm Esther and I'm your warden.
-Take yourselves through. If Lady Hoxley sees you here, there'll be hell to pay.
-What happened to you?
-Oh, it's a long story.
So, are we staying here?
You're in the west wing.
That is nothing, Billy! Watch this.
That is nothing. Watch this.
-When you're in town, give this to the ol' pharmacist, will you?
-What is it?
-Honestly! You give a woman trousers and she asks more questions than a copper.
-Is it black market?
Do you think I'm that sort...
It's pork chops, if you must know.
They are black market. He told me they was.
Yeah, and do you remember when I told you, I did the zippy mouth thing.
Do you remember what that means?
Careless talk costs. Hefty fine and a criminal record.
I'm not sure I should be involved in this.
-Er, them breakages'll need paying for.
-But it was an accident...
Er, unless you want me to do the...
-For the pharmacist?
-Ah, good girl.
One green V neck jumper, two fawn shirts and one brown slouch hat.
-Can we wear a skirt?
Mmm, if you don't mind rats crawling up your legs.
Now, you get one diamond for your armband after every six months of service.
I hope I'm not here that long.
You want to buck your ideas up.
Girls, let me introduce Lady Hoxley.
Two pieces of advice.
Forget about your silly town lives. Things are very different here.
And give total devotion to your duties.
Remember those and everything will be fine. Clear?
Yes, Lady Hoxley.
Yes, Lady Hoxley.
Young lady, you'll soon be too tired to carry a feather, let alone that chip on your shoulder.
Now, I've got work to do.
The Spitfire Fund won't run itself.
Now, get changed and I'll see you both at the farm house.
-Where are the new girls?
-I must've missed them.
How did it go with Harry?
Well, you know what he's like.
What was on that tray?
Pork chops. Finch got me to deliver 'em.
What have I told you about running errands for Finch?
-Well, he said he'd dock me wages if I didn't.
I got distracted and broke some eggs. He would've taken money for breakages.
Right, and were you distracted because of a certain farmer's son?
Well, Billy isn't interested in me. Here, maybe he'll go to the dance.
-Who says you'll be going?
-Like you're going to stop me.
Just slow down, Bea.
You've got your whole life ahead of you.
-What does that mean?
-It means, let's get these trays delivered.
Come on, we should get to the farm.
What are they going to do if we're late, shoot us?
Actually, Lady Poxley probably would.
"The Spitfire Fund won't run itself."
-Lady Poxley? I haven't heard her called that in a while.
-Oh, no, she didn't mean...
I like a lady who speaks her mind.
-What's it like working for her?
-Working for her?
-She must be a pain in the neck.
Full of her own self-importance?
-I see you've met my husband.
Though why he's got time to dilly-dally is anyone's guess.
-Have you organised the garlands for the dance, Lawrence?
-My top priority.
You ladies know about the dance, of course? Everyone is welcome.
There's more important things for them to worry about.
-I'm sorry. I just assumed you were...
-What, the gardener?
Head gamekeeper at least.
So about this dance, sir?
Yes. Well, yes. It's in a few days.
A chance for everyone to let their hair down.
This has got to be a joke.
I've seen worse.
-You tell Mr Finch the new girls have arrived. Go on.
-You can't keep being off with folk.
I can, because I don't want to be here.
Do you think any of us do? But we're all stuck here at cold comfort farm.
We've got to do our bit, else the country'll starve.
Chamberlain! Come back here with my supper!
Hey, come here.
Oh, welcome to Pasture Farm.
Frederick Finch. Ladies, this is where you get your hands dirty.
Is this your husband?
No, he is not!
Hey, easy mistake to make. Ooh, that looks heavy.
I'd help you, but I've got a bad back. You can manage, can't you?
-These are the girls you're gonna be sharing with.
Right, Nancy and Joyce, Bea and Annie, the girl who should have been picking you up.
Right, let me show you where you're gonna be sleeping.
Come on, follow me.
Here you go.
Just like the Savoy.
Well, I had to think fast because the plane flew right at us.
-Shooting at us.
-What did you do?
I pushed Joyce into a ditch and jumped on top of her.
-Only when she comes back, don't mention it. She's a bit embarrassed.
-Have I missed anything?
-I was just asking if there was anything else to eat.
And there's not.
I can't believe this place.
Last week I was in a nice, warm recruiting office, five minutes away from home.
Daddy could get us steak sometimes. He's a civil servant.
-Oh, we haven't had steak since...
-So why did you join the Women's Land Army?
-She was conscripted.
I can talk for myself.
I wouldn't be here if I could help it... No offence.
1938. We had it for Mum's birthday. Remember?
-And what does your husband do?
-He's in the RAF.
-Well, he's training at the moment but he will be a navigator.
And where are you from?
Er, from Coventry.
The bombings have flattened most of it.
My whole street's gone.
Whole houses, you know, just...
And the salon where I worked, that's...
-What about your family?
So, what happens for entertainment in this dump?
Well, seeing as though we've got a five o'clock start tomorrow, I reckon we should get an early night.
-There must be something to do!
-Oh, yeah, yeah there is.
I'll wash and, er, you can wipe.
# You should see me out in France
# Wearing my tin hat... #
'I know it's soppy, but I'll say it again, I miss you.
'Without you, I feel completely alone.
'Despite being with a great bunch of mates.
'The days are long and the training's tough.
'You have to be alert at all times.
'It's been hard work, but I've learnt lots of new skills so I can be top notch in my job.
'In some ways, I wish training didn't have to finish.
'But then, all things must end.
'With love always, John.'
# Down on the Maginot line. #
Hey. Can I get one of those?
They're rationed. Sorry.
-Oh, how about if I just borrow it?
-How does that work?
That's amazing! Make the whole cart disappear!
There are a limit to my talents.
Make me disappear.
-Bea! Sorry if she's bothering you.
-He's just made an egg vanish.
-Like Farmer Finch at breakfast. Can we have it back, please?
-It's just a trick.
-You can't flirt with every man you meet. Egg. Please.
-Take it easy. It's just a trick.
There's no flirting. She reminds me of my daughter.
Oh, no, no, no. Let me. It's the least I can do.
-And no, before you ask, I can't make her disappear.
-It's not your fault.
She's just down in the dumps cos her husband's gone to fight.
Oh, thank you.
Maybe this wasn't such a good idea.
Can't you read?
-What am I supposed to be looking at?
So? It's segregation. Black troops can only go to certain places at certain times.
-But it's wrong.
-I don't make the rules. Take it up with the Yanks.
I can't believe the Americans do that to their own troops.
You're head of the home guard. You could stand up to them, Mr Tucker. They'd listen to you.
Yes, I know I could.
But I've got far more important things to do than picking fights with our allies.
And so have you.
Bea! I'm sorry. I didn't mean to snap at you earlier.
-I just don't want you making a show of yourself, that's all.
-You're the one making a show of me.
I just don't want you to jeopardise anything here.
As if I'd do anything that'd get us sent back home.
Well, just remember what it was like there.
Look, I'm not stupid.
I wish everyone would stop telling me what to do.
Why are you all watching?
-We just want to make sure you're OK, sweetheart.
-Quite a bash.
My arm's fractured, like a casualty of war, Mum.
I'm proud of you, lad.
You know how soldiers get medals when they're brave. Can I have one?
I've got something better than that.
Can I just... Ow!
Brave soldiers only.
All I know is that Lord Hoxley said everyone was welcome.
-Anyway, I've worked out how to stop all the segregation.
I've started a petition.
-And as you've got a pen in your hand...
-Oh, yep, go on then.
-All yours, Joyce.
-Aren't I next?
-Oh, no we've changed the rota.
No-one wanted to go after you.
Not our fault you fell in a cow pat.
I think some went up my nose.
You can keep your bath. I've got a better idea.
Where's she going?
BICYCLE BELL RINGS
'Scuse me, sir.
-Would you like to sign my petition?
Hello, sir. Would you sign my petition?
Shouldn't you be at the farm?
-Fancied some air, Mrs Gulliver.
-What, hanging around the pub?
As if you land girls haven't got enough of a reputation.
Farmer Finch, would you like to sign my petition?
Oh, now, would you take umbrage if I said no?
-But you don't even know what it's about. It might be for free whisky.
I'll sign it.
What are you doing?
Remember what happened to your Uncle Eddie?
He signed a form, and before he knew it, his cart horse belonged to the local butcher.
Oh, free whisky!
That would have been nice.
It's not about free whisky.
Come on, Billy.
I'm sorry, Bea.
Can I fix you one?
I need a clear head.
Now, I'm using a different band this time.
The last lot practically murdered Moonlight Serenade.
I don't know why you agonise over it.
You've got soldiers, land girls and alcohol all in the same room.
None of them are going to care what the music's like.
I'm not organising an orgy.
Does it hurt?
Nothing I can't cope with.
I'm thinking of having drinks with the mayor before things really get going.
Am I invited to that part?
Don't be ridiculous. Of course you are.
Honestly, sometimes you are so taxing.
Will you be well enough to dance?
Well, it rather depends who with.
I think I might go up to my room.
I wasn't aware we'd finished.
Will you run me a bath first?
Well. We meet again.
-There's no need to put in any oil.
-In fact, I can finish. Good night, Lawrence.
What are you doing?
I just, I don't think there's any clean towels in there.
Nonsense. The maid put some out fresh this morning.
What has got into you?
I was wondering if
-maybe we should tell the maid not to warm both beds tonight.
Is it our anniversary or something?
Perhaps you could fix us some drinks?
Sorry, didn't mean to startle you.
-I don't know you.
I'm wearing this uniform. That makes us friends.
You know which end to put in your mouth?
I know what I'm doing.
You didn't ask me to sign your petition.
You won't want to.
I'd love to, but I can't. There's a difference.
Is that because you can't write?
Hey, I can do joined up and everything.
No, we're not allowed to get involved in political activities.
You done good.
Some of the names don't count.
I've had a Mickey Mouse, a Clark Gable and a Charlie Chaplin and I'm sure none of them live in Helmstead.
You want a present?
It's not another cigarette, is it?
So, you going to the dance tomorrow night?
My sister probably won't let me.
You always do everything your sister says?
Where've you been?
It's before curfew.
-Want some gum?
-An Australian gave it to you?
Don't worry, I didn't have to do anything untoward.
You don't know the effect you have.
-Who was he?
-Just a rather nice GI.
You don't even know his name?
Well, he was wearing a US army uniform. That makes us friends.
Well, you don't need that sort of friend.
-Why are you always trying to control me?
-Because I have to look after you.
Do you? Or is it easier than having a life of your own?
Right well, if that's the way you feel, then I'll let you make your own mistakes.
Well, maybe you should.
At least I won't settle down and marry the first man who shows
the slightest bit of interest in me.
A man I don't even love, and then spend the rest of my life regretting it.
-Right, that's it, you can forget about going to the dance.
-You can't stop me!
-Deliveries are in the kitchen.
-No, sorry, I've got something else.
It's a petition.
-I think it's wrong that black and white troops can't go the same places.
Yes, I want the signs taken down.
The ones saying whites only.
There must be, what, 24 names here?
Look, I'm sure there's a lot more people who feel the same way.
Thank you for this.
I'm sure the State Department back in Washington are going to realise the error of their ways now.
You can't just sweep it under the carpet.
I'm waiting here till you take it seriously. And I can wait a long time, you know.
OK, I'll make sure this gets seen by the relevant people.
-We'll give the matter our full consideration.
What are you doing tonight?
You're very forward for an English girl.
I'm not asking you out, silly.
Not like that, anyway. It's the dance at the Manor House.
I've already got a date, but you can come if you like.
-We're not invited.
-That's where you're wrong.
I've just delivered a petition saying that we won't have segregation in Helmstead.
Impressive. But that don't mean we can come tonight.
Wrong again. Lord Hoxley said everyone was invited.
Even Farmer Finch.
Well, she's always been reckless.
She gets an idea in her head and then that's it. No stopping her.
She can't do any harm with you looking after her.
No, but she's only a child.
-Young in her ways, yeah.
She's, she's only 17.
She lied about her age so she could join up.
I should have done that!
Said I was 41 so they wouldn't let me in.
It's all right, your secret's safe with me.
-Oh, smoked salmon?
Right, I've got to work for Lady Hoxley tonight so I need someone to look after Martin for me.
I need to go to the dance.
What, like you needed to be with your husband instead of collecting Nancy and Joyce?
I think you owe me a favour, don't you?
It's called the contrast look.
-It's all the rage.
-Let me try.
OK, try this one. Come on. You're done.
Now, put it above your top lip.
Gives it a fuller look.
-Oh, yeah. You're right.
-Oh, that's a bit too much.
-No-one asked you.
-Don't worry, I'll watch her.
Now, show me what to do with my eyes.
It feels odd coming to a dance without my John.
Well, don't worry. No-one's going to proposition YOU.
I should hope not. Why not?
Allow me to buy you a beverage.
-Isn't it free?
-Oh, well observed.
I swear we'd have winged it if we'd had more armoury.
But it is hard to shoot a plane from the ground.
Of course, we didn't have to deal with that in the Great War, did we, sir?
This is more like it.
Beats being face down in a ditch.
That must have been so frightening. When the plane attacked.
Where's Finch with those drinks?
You shouldn't be embarrassed about Nancy saving you.
-Aren't the band good?
No, I enjoy working for the Spitfire Fund.
Oh, and that's not your only charity, your ladyship.
Putting up with those common girls.
It'd drive a saint to drink.
I must mingle. Have you seen the mayor?
Bea, wow... You look... You look...
He forgets the simplest of things if I'm not there to guide 'im.
Wow, look at you.
Sure beats the hell out of overalls.
I've seen that look before.
You're not out of the game yet, son.
She's like a sheep being rounded up by two collies.
You've just got to be the better dog.
Oh, that's a great help that is, Dad.
Perhaps he'll get distemper.
Glad you came. The bar's inside.
Oh, my goodness.
What do you think you're doing, Corporal?
Coming to the dance. Is that OK? Ma'am?
Without a fuss. And we won't take this any further.
You can't do this.
Look, we were told everyone was welcome.
-No prizes for guessing who gave you that idea.
-He's my guest.
-You said you'd fix things.
-Take them away.
-You said it'd be fine.
-So you can humiliate me again?
Now, next time, just stay out of things that don't concern you.
Let's get you a drink.
Don't you wish you were dancing?
Is your husband a good dancer?
I rather let him down.
Two left feet.
Can you fix it?
It's nice coming to these things when you're happily married,
cos I can just relax and not be worried about men.
Where's the fun in that?
Shouldn't we keep an eye on Bea?
You can watch her. I'll watch the handsome men in uniform, thank you very much.
It's a difficult situation.
But then, hey, I don't make the laws. Drink up.
Would you, er, care to dance?
It's never too late, son.
Remember Aunt Jessie? She waited till the "just cause an impediment"
bit before shouting her love from the back of the church.
Shame it were the wrong wedding.
Don't get your hopes up.
Just look as if you're enjoying dancing with me.
And this is my John. First day in his RAF uniform.
Doesn't he look smart?
I have an uncle who works at MGM.
I could give him a call about you.
You kinda remind me of a young Greer Garson.
-Don't be daft.
Silly. Stupid. It's a British word. I don't know the American for it.
Mrs Butler told me that Farmer Finch has a pig running loose in the house.
Is that true?
What would she know about it?
Ah, so you're not denying it then?
He's called Chamberlain, if you must know.
Ow! That was my foot. Concentrate.
Sorry. Is this really worth the effort?
Trust me. You're dancing with a woman who accepted a marriage proposal to make someone jealous.
-Where are you from?
Well, if you don't know, who does?
We went to Lyme Regis for our honeymoon.
They had fresh daffs in the room and a full English breakfast every morning.
Can I cut in?
-You know, I'm not sure that...
-Oh, well, too late.
I wanted to say thank you for saving my neck the other night.
Well, if I hadn't, we both would have been in hot water.
I already was.
Must be lonely in that farmhouse?
A woman like you.
What are you insinuating?
Well, your husband's stuck in a Prisoner of War camp and Farmer Finch,
well, he has a man's appetites.
That is an awful...
-How could you even...?
-I'm just saying what it looks like from the outside, that's all.
There's no other option.
If the Germans win, they'll take everything.
Besides, I wouldn't be here dancing with a beautiful girl.
It's an American word. I don't know the British for it.
Sometimes beer is the only answer.
Fifteen of these and you won't remember your own name, let alone hers.
My dad says the Americans should have got involved sooner.
If only your dad had spoken to President Roosevelt.
Would your dad approve of us?
We're just two friends having a dance.
I thought you wanted to come outside to kiss.
Right, I felt a connection.
That's not all you were feeling.
I haven't had much experience around girls before.
So I meet someone special and I get ahead of myself cos I don't know how to behave.
-So much for playing my cards close to my chest.
I think it's good to be honest. Especially with the war on.
We could all be dead tomorrow.
I could be grounded tomorrow.
See, you've learnt some American after all.
Why don't you come here and show me how special I am.
# In every lovely summer's day
# In everything that's light and gay
# I'll always think of you that way
# I'll find you in the morning sun
# And when the night is new
# Ill be looking at the moon
# But I'll be seeing you. #
You should be getting home.
-Your friends will be worried.
I want this to last forever.
There's so much I want to know.
What your favourite food is.
What your home town's like.
How many brothers and sisters you've got. Loads of things.
There's plenty of time for that.
I should get back to the barracks.
I've got an early start in the morning, so...
-What's your favourite colour?
-Er, what's yours?
-Hey, mine too.
Now, come on, we gotta go.
So, are we courting now?
I don't know what that is.
Annie? How's he been?
Fine. How was the dance?
Oh, yeah, it's still going strong.
Everyone's having a gay old time.
Well, to be honest, I didn't see much of her.
She was dancing with a good-looking Yank.
I'd better go and check everything's all right. You don't mind, do you?
No, course I don't.
Somebody obviously has a late call in the morning.
-Making the most of it, ma'am.
-You deserve it.
Thanks for the tip-off.
Just wanted everyone to have a good time.
John put in a bath next to the kitchen, and it was such a small room you had to climb over the taps.
Oh, must be tired.
I think it's time Lord Hoxley changed partners. Don't be shy.
Forgot my handbag. You all right?
I need to tell you something.
That American woman, she knew the black soldiers would be here.
-What are you talking about?
-That friend of yours, he tipped her off.
It's a cheap trick, Billy.
Cal and I are courting, if you must know.
Really? That's good.
Why don't you tell that to Casanova.
What are you doing?
I thought we were courting.
What about your early start?
Er, no, I can explain.
Oh, this'll be good. What, you fell on her mouth by accident?
Or perhaps you listen to what people say with your lips?
Well, honey, you never heard of lip reading?
I prefer the beer.
What did you do that for?
It was an accident. I was aiming for...
Aiming? You shouldn't have been aiming for anyone!
I'm really sorry if she's... What's happened?
I won't tolerate this behaviour. Get out!
Please, don't make us go home.
Oh, Annie, what are we gonna do?
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
Four girls have different reasons for joining the Women's Land Army: patriotic Joyce wants to 'do her bit', argumentative Nancy is there under sufferance, and sensible Annie joined so that her younger sister Bea could escape an abusive father.
Bea rebels from her sister's control and finds herself enthralled by a charming GI, Cal Gillespie, while at the dance Nancy tries to get closer to Lord Hoxley.