Period drama series. Farmer Finch hires some 'trekkers', families displaced by the bombing, but after a break-in at the manor house Lady Hoxley makes Finch get rid of them.
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DISCORDANT CELLO PLAYS
'The rats undercover of the black-out and profiting by ruined buildings
'are forming the menace of an enemy within our gates.
'If you saw this, you would soon stop it.
'But, in effect, it happens when the rat has already shared our food in the larder.
'If there are rats in your home or business premises,
please let us know. We can help you to rout the rat.'
361, Fisher, Sir!
Thank you, Corporal.
You are aware of the charges?
-And of the severity of the penalties at my disposal?
And yet, after three months, you still offer no defence or mitigation...
..for deserting your post, your comrades and my command...
..with the most flagrant and inexcusable disregard for your obligations,
both to the reputation of this service and to your country at a time of war?
a full report's now been compiled and testimony given against you,
by Home Guard officer who effected your recapture.
Sergeant Tucker, please read from your statement.
Seen this? Solid!
-So when is it?
-It's tomorrow night.
Tell Lady Hoxley I haven't got any clothes for a party.
-No, I think the idea is you'll be serving the cocktails, not drinking them.
We're not here to be her skivvies.
I know, but what with the Spitfire Fund and all...
She's got all the big nobs coming.
I think it'll be fun. It'll make a nice change.
Some of us have got other things to worry about, thanks to you.
Out. Come on, quickly, quick.
All right, keep your hair on!
What happened then? Is he all right?
Well, don't just stand there! Tell me. Please.
-Well, he was all set for a Court Martial, as you know.
Flagrant dereliction of duty. I made that quite plain.
-I'm sure you did!
-Cowardice, is what I call it.
Still, I made them aware of some extenuating circumstances.
What, that he came back to help you?
When he could've just left you there to bleed to death in that car.
-He didn't need to save your neck.
He could've run, if he was the coward you're making him out to be.
I got him off though, didn't I? Eh?
He should count himself lucky - no mistake.
I should've known a bit of gratitude was too much to ask.
-And they're just going to leave it at that?
I should co-co. They're posting him.
Lincolnshire way, I should think.
Rear gunner! Well, what do you expect?
A trip to the ruddy Bahamas?
So d'you think you and Joyce can get on a bit better, now John's been released?
That would be nice.
-How are you feeling?
-How d'you mean?
All this talk about husbands.
That's all behind me, now.
Gotta make my own way in the world.
You must still miss Harry.
Miss a lot of things. Don't you?
Anyway, you never know who's going to be at this party of hers.
Might get myself a rich one this time. Can you imagine that -
a proper toff, setting you up for life in a big mansion?
Seems strange Finch taking on all these tramps?
They're trekkers, that's all.
They're just looking for work, like anyone else.
Except they live in ditches.
-Ah, Mr Kirkham.
-Having a clear out, then?
-What brings you to these parts?
All the way from next door(?)
I hear you've taken on some trekkers.
-Oh, just down the Hare and Hounds, you know.
Better watch 'em. They're light-fingered.
Hey, you'll never believe this one. And stop me if this is just beer talk, mind.
But they only reckon you've gone and put yourself in for the Ministry prize, for the best kept local farm.
-I mean to say.
-I have, yeah.
Well, the inspectors are due in a couple of days.
I'm well aware of that fact, thank you very much.
-Then don't you think you should withdraw?
Any more than Churchill would.
Well, there was Dunkirk...
It is a model, this place.
Get off, it's a muddle.
You don't stand a chance against us.
I will "fight you in the fields".
In fact, if you'd like to make a small wager...
Oh, you still owe me ten bob from the Cup Final and they haven't played that in years.
Ay, and while we're on about it, whatever happened to that seed drill of mine?
We are supposed to share resources in a time of war.
You've had that since the last one.
Probably here with the rest of your rubbish.
Farming isn't always pretty, my friend.
I've just seen your septic tank.
And what about that slurry pit down the bottom? Stinks to high heaven.
I will get my Land Girls onto it.
Oh, your chivalry knows no bounds(!)
Modern, high-yield agriculture, that's what they're looking for.
That man is a menace.
-Kirkham's all right.
-No. This time he's crossed the line.
-From now on, he is the enemy.
A Jerry without the jackboots.
Hitler with...a bigger moustache.
Das ist good, jah?
Das ist eine coward.
Ah, Mr Kirkham. Ha!
-Now look what you've done.
It's a rat, it's a rat!
It won't hurt you. Steady on!
Hurry up, lad, we've got one.
You see it?
-Why don't you just kill it?
-What's it ever done to you?
-Ah! He-he-he! Good lad.
Ha-ha-ha! Now, to the barn.
Did we really have to be put in with them?
You're more used to high society, eh?
Eh, now then, there will be a small charge for your accommodation, which I'll dock from your wages.
If anybody needs milk or eggs, I'm sure we can come to some arrangement.
-Careful. He'll probably charge you for them an' all.
They're for her, if you must know.
Come on, tea's up.
Yeah, but surely if you saw a rat you'd just kill it.
He's probably charging it rent.
And he's cleared out the barn, as well.
At least he's getting rid of the things.
Even Finch wouldn't let people stay in an infested barn.
-Some of them look a bit infested themselves.
-Well, they do!
Well, it's not just for the trekkers' sake.
-There's a competition going.
Oh, aye, twenty quid for the best-kept farm.
He's up against Kirkham's, next door.
-He's got no chance!
-They'll win by a mile.
-Especially with that bunch of fleabags about.
-Right, we've got these, they're going to the Manor.
-Oh, I'll go.
Stretch my legs.
I brought you some potato cakes.
We don't want your charity.
I didn't bring them for you.
Oh, um, for the party.
I know. Any excuse.
Yes, I think in the kitchen.
She's worked like a dog all her life,
bringing up her family
on nothing, half the time.
Two sons in the ground and a house blown to bits.
What's she ever done to deserve this, eh?
From Hitler or anybody else.
So what did you do, before you were bombed out?
A steelworker, like my father.
And has he died, too?
The furnaces did that, not the Germans.
Now I just want some collar.
Somewhere quiet, where I can look after her.
Can't you go back to the factories?
Oh, yeah, I could do that.
If I get myself billeted.
But what'll happen to her?
They'll cart her off, won't they?
-Why should they?
AIRCRAFT ENGINE HUM
Don't worry, they're ours. They come over most nights, now.
Don't worry. Don't fret yourself now, Mum.
No, they're Lancasters. They won't harm us.
Have you ever heard a thousand-pound bomb direct hit?
Trapped in a cellar under ten feet of rubble with three dead neighbours?
It's OK, no, no.
There's a good girl. Sssh, now, come on.
They're ours, they're Lancs.
This is why I had to get her out of the Rest Centre.
They were talking about putting her away.
-Perhaps she'd be better off being cared for.
Have you seen the state of those places?
With half the world slaughtering each other,
who's gonna give a damn about her?
I'd rather see her in her grave.
I just wish we could get away from this place. Go somewhere for a weekend.
Mr and Mrs Smith?
I'm sick of creeping about, skulking in corners.
We've got to face it? Someone's going to find out, sooner or later.
How? We hardly see each other, as it is.
Lawrence, it's only a matter of time.
-I should just leave here.
-Don't say that, darling.
-I've caused enough trouble as it is.
-Don't you dare.
You'll be all right. They send new Land Girls all the time.
Oh, do you think(?)
What the hell was...?
Well, don't just stand there.
Well, she'd just like you to help her get the place ready.
Hasn't she got servants for that?
It's better than being cooped up in here all day.
Well, you've only got yourself to blame. You keep out of sight.
-Hell to pay last night.
Some of them trekkers only broke into the Manor.
-Didn't pinch much, but Lady Hoxley's up in arms. Told Dad to get rid of them.
She's got no right. They're not all to blame.
Try telling her that.
It's not bad news, is it?
No... John wants me to go and see him tonight, before he leaves.
Well, that's what you wanted.
Might be the last time, though.
No, don't talk like that, Joyce. He's gonna be all right.
What, a tail-gunner in a bomber?
-Yeah, but it doesn't mean...
-You know as well as I do.
He'll be lucky to last a month.
Right, how are you gonna get there?
Train, I suppose.
But what about the party?
Now, I'll have you know, this wasn't my decision.
In fact, it's about the last thing I would have wanted.
But some stinking, rotten thieves have brought this on the lot of us.
So, I'm sorry,
but unless someone owns up, you're all going to have to leave.
Well, it's out of my hands.
-You've no-one to blame but yourselves.
-Yeah, but what about our money?
You'll be paid in full for all the work you've done. Less, of course, the agreed expenses.
-What, for a bit of straw?
-Steady on, lads.
We'll have no argy-bargy, do you hear?
It's for your mum.
Excuse me, what's going on?
You! Yes, you, man, you.
Just ignore him.
You. What have you got there?
-What's it got to do with you?
-You clumsy oaf.
From the Manor House, no doubt.
-Arrest this man.
-No, it was my breakfast.
-I'll say one thing, you're not fussy.
-You watch your mouth.
Come on, now, lads. No need for any ructions.
Adam. Adam, come on.
You're nothing but vermin!
I know you!
Right, the rest of you, get over there, go on!
You're nothing but vermin!
< Clear off!
What's all the fuss about?
-I wouldn't know.
-There's coppers there.
Well, all the more reason for you to keep out of the way.
-Leave me be!
-What if they come in?
Well, what if they do? I'm not a criminal, am I? Though I do wonder sometimes!
-Blue murder out there.
-Aye, it's not much better in here.
-Hey, there's all sorts of people outside.
-Don't you start.
Well, I'm only telling you.
-I don't know why they don't just lock me up and have done with it!
I'm sorry, Bea.
Then get me out of here.
I do hope you don't mind helping out, but it is all in a good cause and,
I must confess, I thought you'd add a little glamour.
You are such pretty things, when you're all scrubbed up.
Joyce, you must be feeling better after your good news?
Tucker did tell me he'd put in a word.
-Yes, thank you.
-And I'm sure you'd enjoy an evening at the house?
-Make a change from that dreary billet at any rate.
Honestly, I don't know how you girls can stand it. I'd have gone completely potty at your age.
-Now there's the Marquis and the Willingdons, of course.
Such nice people.
-And Gerald from the bank.
-The thing is, Lady...
And I've managed to dig out some cocktail glasses and there's
the silver trays, but they'll all need a bit of a polish, I'm afraid.
Honestly, it's been such an age since we had any sort of function. Feels like a positive scandal.
-I'm very, very sorry...
She's...on her way.
As luck would have it I did find some bitters and Vermouth,
but honestly, you just can't buy an olive for miles.
Come on, keep moving.
Thank you, constable.
What's going on?
Just getting rid of the riff-raff.
Take all your clobber with you!
Are you deaf?
What are you up to?
Has he gone?
What did you run away for, anyway?
I didn't. It was more of a...tactical retreat.
You know, like Dunkirk.
The thing is, lad,
I'm trying to make a living here and give a hand to those less fortunate than myself.
Help feed the world in its hour of darkest peril.
Come on, lad, and bring that with you.
Where we going?
Mum, we've got to go.
She's not well enough, I can't move her like this.
I'll get the doctor from the village.
How am I supposed to pay for him?
I'll speak to him.
And what about the Bobbies? They'll be back.
They'll take me away and cart her off. How will I ever find her?
I'll speak to someone, I promise. Just wait here for me. Please.
I'll be back, as soon as I can.
It'll be just like the Cafe de Paris - before those wretched Germans flattened it, of course.
-Now they're bound to need tacking here and there.
-I have to go up to Loughborough to see John - tonight.
He's leaving tomorrow.
Well, we'll be finished by eight.
You can take the Lagonda after that.
-But I can't drive.
-No, but Nancy can, can't you, dear?
And I'm sure she'd be happy to help.
Oh, Annie, at last!
Now, I thought you could take care of His Grace.
He's rather partial to a Singapore Sling.
Lady Hoxley, about the trekkers...
Oh, we've dealt with those.
You girls have nothing to fear.
Well, no, that's not the point.
In fact, I've told Tucker to take the dogs out. See off any stragglers.
Honestly, one can't be too careful with people like that.
Beastly creatures! Now, I had some little aprons somewhere.
It's been driving me barmy,
having to feel so guilty all the time.
I mean, I know I'm up the spout, but I'm not Lord ruddy Haw-Haw!
Come on, I want to show you something.
See that? Our family tree, that is.
Mum and Dad were having a picnic under it when he asked her to marry him.
Thought I'd introduce you.
You need it more than I...
-Take it, will you?
-Big, strong chap like you?
You're too good to me, you are.
This all belongs to Kirkham. Funny old tyke, he is.
He likes a jar, but he keeps a good farm, I'll give him that.
What d'you think they put in it anyway - meat paste?
It's probably Hitler's secret weapon!
-What is it?
What's he up to?
-So, where's the doctor, then?
-Well, can't Finch take you?
-I can't find him!
She can stick her rotten party.
I'm just gonna go anyway. I'm sick of being ordered about.
Look, I'll take you. Like she said.
-You'll be there by nine.
Are you sure?
Yeah, of course.
It'll be fun in that old bus of hers. Bet it goes like the clappers.
Oh, and we can get some nibbles for the journey.
-And some gin!
What is he doing?
Come on, get a move on!
How much is this prize, then?
I told you. A tenner.
And what am I getting?
We have to win it first. Hurry up!
Come on, my beauties! He's gonna do his nut!
It's the rats!
That's it. Shake it. There we go, that's it.
There we are. Ooh...
Stop that one. Ooh, ooh! Argh!
It's got me leg!
It's got me leg! Ooh!
-Look at him go!
-Serves him right.
It'll bite me!
Do meself a mischief!
DANCEHALL MUSIC PLAYS
Yes, the Spitfire fund has been going marvellously.
Ellen has been working quite, erm, quite tirelessly.
Two more Highballs, please, Joyce.
Of course, we owe it all to the Spitfire.
Yes! Stroke of luck, huh?
Good old Leslie Howard!
-He showed 'em!
-Yes, but it does still have to be paid for, Gerald.
-More canapes, I think?
-Oh, thank you.
Come on, Mum. Get some sleep.
This Italian says, "Just a moment.
"How do we find reverse?!"
-Isn't he priceless?
-That's the spirit, hey, Larry? Safety first!
I'll have you know, my husband has an impeccable service record.
I'm glad to hear it.
Decorated in the First War.
Like my maiden aunt's parlour!
-Er, Paschendale, actually.
Such a beautiful name, I always think, for such a...
Such a living nightmare.
-You can't just leave us hanging, old chap.
-I wounded my leg. That's about it.
Leading an advance against the enemy guns.
What, over the top and all that?!
-I am glad you find it amusing.
Well, what else?
Rotten luck to be missing out now, though...I'd imagine.
What is your contribution, Mainment?
About 15 guineas, so far, Lawrence. So don't start any nonsense.
Tell me, my dear. Where did you find an olive?
-Stuffy in there.
-What, the room or the people?
Ellen is going with the Willingdons - some christening or other.
We'll have the house to ourselves... All night.
I'll get rid of the servants - give them Sunday morning off.
What could be more perfect?
-Oh, darling, I can't.
-Why on earth not?
-I promised Joyce I'd...
Nancy, Nancy, this is all we've talked about.
We deserve this. A little...
A little dignity for once.
Some time to ourselves.
We can wake up together.
Ah. Your wife.
Er...you'd better come.
What the devil's going on?
Oh, it's just the Home Guard.
We've had rather a problem with vagrants, I'm afraid.
Of course, one doesn't want to shoot these people.
But if they simply won't go away...
Stop! Or I'll fire!
DOGS BARKING, GUNSHOT
Well, now you know.
Oh, I know it, all right.
I know you're angry with me about John. I should've kept quiet.
But please don't say anything about this.
As long as I get to see him, that's all.
Well, the thing is, I...I can't.
What do you mean?
Well, I can't drive you there. Lord Hoxley won't let me.
-No, you promised.
-Well, he says it's not safe - in the blackout.
Don't give me that! I...
You just do as I say.
-Well, boot's on the other foot now, isn't it?
One word from me and you'd be out on your ear. Him, as well.
-Serve you both right, carrying on.
-You're blackmailing me?
Call it what you like. I want to see my husband.
-And I guess it doesn't matter what I want?
-You gave me your word.
-You've got half an hour.
-No! Joyce, I'm not gonna take you.
Yes, you will.
Oh, Annie, I've got a huge favour to...
Where are you going?
< Nancy, dear? We're waiting!
Mm-hmm! Fancy nobbling Kirkham's barn!
'Ere, it were nearly him who got nobbled. Good and proper!
Wonder what the party's like?
Well, that can't be them already, surely?
-Billy, you've been told to knock.
I brought this. For Bea.
I made it myself, I did. This past month or two.
Oh, Billy! That's lovely!
It really is.
Thank you, ever so much.
That's all right.
Now, I'd like a word with you, please.
In private, if you don't mind?
-Where have you been? It's been hours.
-We've got to get her out.
-Have you seen the state of her?
They're across the field. They've guns and dogs.
Look at her! She's not gonna last the night, at this rate.
What am I supposed to do? I can't just sit here and watch her die.
There's a doctor at the party.
Well...I've been thinking. And...
I don't want you having the baby.
-It's bit late for that.
-Not out of wedlock.
It's a bit late for that, too.
Billy, are you drunk?
Now, I know I haven't done all that much in life up to now.
Not like you have at any rate, but...
No. Not like I have.
No, I didn't mean that.
Well, what did you mean, then?
That I think a lot of you.
And I don't care about the little 'un.
Well, no, I do care,
because it's yours.
So, I suppose...Bea...
Bea, I'm asking...I'm asking you...
-I'm asking you to be my wife.
-Esther? Esther! Esther...
Well, I was hoping for more then 15 guineas.
Don't want it all at once. Might get shot dow...
Thank you, Nancy.
Oh, Larry, old thing. I do hope you haven't been dipping into the help.
Maidment, old chap.
Do you always have to be such an ass?
Where have you been? She's been asking after you.
Excuse me. I'm sorry.
-Are you Doctor Carlton?
They've got the dogs on us now, Mum.
Hunting us down, they are, like animals.
You remember when this all started?
We used to think that some good was gonna come of it.
"Bring a bit of justice to the world", that's what you said. Once and for all.
But nothing's gonna change, is it?
Any more than it did last time.
DOGS BARK IN DISTANCE
-Nice and steady.
-Are you all right?
-Where's your truck? Round the back.
-Right, we need to get to hospital now. Well, come on then!
Finch, it's too late. She's started.
Come on, let's get her on that chair.
All right, nice and steady.
Thank you, so much.
-You're just gonna have to ask Annie when she gets back.
-I'm sorry. Really.
But you know this might be the last chance I get.
That's very sweet of you, Humphrey. Beyond the call.
Darling, is he always this generous?
-Yes, what is it, dear?
Terribly sorry, Lady Hoxley.
I take it this is about your husband?
No, it's, eh, about yours.
In what regard?
Er... In...in regard to Nancy Morrell.
Thank you, Joyce. I'll attend to that later.
Your Grace, you're not leaving already?
All right, men! That'll do!
Right, are you coming out?! Or are we coming in after ya?!
DOGS BARK, HAMMERING ON DOOR
-All right, love.
-Sit her down there, Finch.
Yep. There we are.
Slowly. That's it.
-What's going on out there?
-I don't know.
-Go and find Annie.
-Billy, wait. Give me your hand. Oh!
All right, slow your breathing down.
There, good girl.
All right, lads! It's coming!
-There's a woman there dying.
I want those thieving ditchers out of here!
-What are you're doing?
-That's my barn!
-We told you to get rid of 'em!
-You stand back and get these dogs away!
-Off my property, the lot of you!
-I want them out now!
-You'll do as I say, Tucker!
I'll do as your wife says...sir.
Aaagh! Aaaagh! Ha! Ha!
Aaagh! Aaaagh! Aagh! Oh!
Oh! Oh! Oh!
Right, I'm taking you in!
Get out of here. Get out!
I'm so sorry.
-Oh, I can't do it, Esther.
-Yes, you can. You're nearly there.
It's just one more try.
-You can do it.
-Come on, Bea, love.
I want you to push hard for me now, all right?
-Come on, you're nearly there.
That's it. Come on. Come on, Bea.
Yes! You've got a little boy! You've got a little boy!
Is everything all right, sir?
Everything's fine. Sorry.
I'll be right with you.
You really must do something about that damn little swine!
Which little swine is that?
Well, Tucker, of course!
The little man's deranged!
Darling, you do know the Willingdons are leaving?
But I thought you were going with them?
I thought... Darling, you said...
Excuse me, Lady Hoxley...
-Yes, what is it, girl?
-It's the telephone for you.
See that? It's your Auntie Annie.
Oh, look at his face!
One minute I was all right. The next, he was halfway here.
You don't know how lucky you are.
Doesn't feel very lucky.
-Oh, just look at him!
-I'm surprised you didn't hear her wailing.
I know, you could've waited a few minutes!
You should've tried telling him that!
If that's Billy, tell him to get the kettle on.
Frightened to death, he was!
He was ever so good, though.
-Bless his heart.
-Oh, Lady Hoxley...
Annie, I've brought some news.
-About your husband.
They've found him alive. Not far from Tobruk.
He's in hospital now. They'll send the details in due course.
I just thought you'd like to know right away.
Yes. Thank you, Lady Hoxley.
Oh, and I asked Lawrence to take Joyce.
Nancy's on her way back.
Well, thank...thank you.
Well, good night, then.
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Farmer Finch hires some 'trekkers', families displaced by the bombing, as cheap labour, but when there is then a break-in at the manor house Lady Hoxley orders Finch to get rid of them all. A riot ensues and Tucker gets the dogs out.
The Hoxleys hold a swanky party, but after clashing with Nancy over a visit to her husband John, Joyce tells Lady Hoxley about the affair. Billy finally proposes to Bea, but she goes into labour before she can answer.