This Week in The Archers – Week Ending 13 June 2014

The big weekend arrives in Ambridge at last. It might well be the single wicket contest, but is the return of the prodigal son for Shula. Although she’s not all that pleased to hear how much Dan is loving his time at Sandhust. It doesn’t help that the rest of the family can see such a positive change in Dan – for the better. But it’s a good weekend for Dan as he wins the single wicket, and gives Shula the proud moment of handing over the Mark Hebden trophy to Mark’s son. But Dan is obviously getting sharper observation skills, although its not that hard to see Shula is troubled.
Dan couldn’t miss her ongoing concern over his career choice, but is there trouble over Alistair’s “networking” on the Friday?

But the real competition is over Open Farm Sunday. Its business as usual up at Brookfield, but after a bit of inspired thinking from Charlie Thomas, Berrow Farm – much to Rob’s unhappiness – has their own open day. Naturally with Pip back for the weekend (thankfully silent) and Jill on hand with her baking prowess, it all goes superbly for them. The Echo is on hand to see it all, and it couldn’t have gone better. More than can be said for the mega dairy. The positive PR that Charlie was desperate for went out the window with the Echo now on hand to see a dead calf. Its maybe what farming is all about, but its not image Charlie was looking for. Advantage Brookfield there I suspect.

Fresh from the Open Farm Sunday triumph, Jill is as busy as ever looking after her still dependent brood of Archers. Its Nigel’s birthday, and Lizzie is down, but never fear, Jill I on hand. But it’s the bigger picture for her family that’s concerning Jill the most. Route B worries are becoming all –consuming for Jill, and it was inevitable that the Brookfield Archers would make the opposition to the road personal. It affect them most after all. But almost making the campaign a “Save Brookfield” campaign is risky strategy. It would seem that not everyone in the village is militantly opposed to it. You only need to look to Home Farm (predictably) and the Dower House for evidence of that.

Lizzie is generally supportive of course, but she has her own concerns. Roy is still buzzing about their upcoming trip to Greenbury Fields, but Lizzie is having second thoughts about it all, although its maybe a welcome diversion from her melancholy thoughts over Nigel. That’s no concern of Shula, who is still bending ears over Dan’s army career. It does get Lizzie thinking about Freddie, and whether or not he’s ready to be the man of the house. Is Lizzie thinking on moving on? Should Roy look out for himself under the canvas with Lizzie? I wonder if there have been any behind the scenes “discussion” between Roy and Hayley over Roy’s away day(s) with Lizzie?

Speaking of away days, its all go for Adam. After an invitation from Charlie, he’s got Brian at him to go to the cereals show thing. Choices, choices for Adam. Well, he’s coming round to Charlie, and its Brian who gets knocked back. Might Brian have been a gooseberry? At least it would have got Brian away from the Home Farm kitchen. Its one delay after another for Jennifer and her Albion. Hasn’t she twigged she’s dealing with a cowboy? We don’t have an Albion at home, but it did take less than a week to install, but Jennifer’s kitchen saga is just running and running. Just how will Brian’s heart cope when he finally twigs they’re being had?

Naturally this week, Helen is full of it after having been presented with an engagement ring. She’s completely infatuated and the more it goes on, the worse its going to be for her when it all goes pear-shaped. Peggy is delighted for her of course, reflecting on her own choices. I suspect that Helen getting a “second chance” is about it as far as similarities between herself and Peggy goes. Despite her advancing years, Peggy still can’t stop worrying about her offspring, unlike Helen it seems. But it’s a tough time for Peggy, who is feeling Tom’s absence keenly – just when she is being reminded of Jack’s departure. Its all getting a bit much for Peggy and she’s finding loneliness a little hard to handle, although Fallon shows up in the nick of time to lift her spirits, but maybe its time for Tony to make his peace with Peggy. Pat is hoping that Tom will reappear – something that would really lift Peggy – but Tony is the voice of reason there for a change. There are big decisions to be made on the pigs with Neil being at risk of feeling the fallout. Neil – with his vested interest of course – manages to talk Tony round to keeping the pigs, for the short term at least. At least Tony is managing to make sensible decisions (for once) but he’s being a big blinkered on the fact that only he (or Tom) can manage the pigs. Maybe putting that responsibility Jazzer’s way is going to far, although he’ll be delighted to see his girls back.

But Peggy does get a little fired up over Route B discussions with Jill, much to Jill’s annoyance. Peggy is being a realist over that at least, and with Brookfield making it all about them, there is no surprise Peggy can’t see the campaign having any impact at all. Jill is having none of it though, but trying to see Justin Ellliot? Good luck with that. First port of call for that is JE’s man on the ground Charlie Thomas. Its hard work for Jill, but at least Charlie gives her a fair hearing and at least promises to take her concerns to Justin, but she can forget the face-to-face meeting. Which raises in interesting question for me. No one had met Justin Elliot before the BL board meeting that saw Brian deposed.
Charlie is going all-out to get to know the key players in Ambridge, and takes on board what he hears. Could it be that Charlie Thomas is aka Justin Elliot?

At least with Charlie’s trip away with Adam, Rob is allowed a bit of peace up at Berrow Farm. But why waste a de facto day off with work, when you could poison Helen’s mind and make sure she never has a reconciliation with Kirsty. Rob is persistent in blaming Kirsty for everything that’s gone wrong at Ambridge Organics. Its turned out to be a good day for Rob with Berrow Farm’s Open Farm Sunday not making good reading in the Echo. Just who will Charlie hold responsible? That can wait for Charlie, who is in his element educating Adam to the future of farming. Adam is coming round to Charlie’s way of thinking, but is that what Charlie is really after? He’s slick, and knows how to butter up Adam. Servicing half of Borsetshire? Just what are you after Charlie? Remember Ian? Adam is being completely won over by Charlie, and is signing his praises to Brian. I wonder of Adam is being groomed by Charlie to take full command at Home Farm with Brian and Debbie getting the elbow?

Charlie’s week doesn’t end to well though as he continues getting it in the neck from the Archers. After seeing the Echo – then being reminded of it
(smugly) by David, he’s in no mood for any of it. Rob seems to have escaped the bulk of his ire. But Rob picks a bad time to try and escape to pick up Henry. Charlie isn’t impressed, and it was interesting to hear that Rob is in full agreement with Charlie’s views on the Archers. Oh Helen, you really have no idea of the contempt Rob seems to hold your family in. Rob is playing the long game nicely, and now his attention has turned to Henry.
Just what did he tell Helen in her absence? You can be sure it was nothing about her needing to hold on for a delivery at the shop. Henry’s reaction to her appearance was frosty to say the least. With Rob seemingly turning Henry against Helen, are his plans gathering pace at last? Look out Helen!

Week Ending 6 June

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