General notes: The BBC's listings from the early days of their online presence started in June and often include little information. Repeats are rarely indicated until October. September's transmission dates are a little askew, probably due to the events surrounding the Princess of Wales' death - I have noted these where they occur. Also, I have transferred what I could from the original notes on Suttonelms and updated where needed; however some glitches may still be apparent below (eg some 'replace all' text errors).
WOMAN'S HOUR SERIAL/SHORT STORY
10:30am Weekdays; 15mins; Individual synopses/reader information where available; In 1997 there was no repeat later in the day, and next to no information in the listings.
(02 to 18-06-1997) The Arizona Game (Georgina Hammick, abr Doreen Estall, read by Haydn Gwynne)
(19-06-1997) Walker Brothers Cowboy (Alice Munro)
(20-06-1997) The Immaculate Bridegroom (Helen Simpson)
(23-06 to 02-07-1997) A Many-Splendoured Thing (Han Suyin, read by Pik Sen-Lim)
(03 to 04-07-1997) Polaris (Fay Weldon)
(07 to 18-07-1997) Delicate Matters (Vickery Turner, abr Meg Clarke)
(21-07 to 05-08-1997) Kiss & Kin (Angela Lambert, abr Meg Clarke, read by Sarah Badel) Harriet and Oliver have fallen for one another, but will their age, and their shared grandchildren, make their love impossible?
(06-08-1997) Walker Brothers Cowboy (Alice Munro, abr Di Spiers, read by Buffy Davis)
(07-08-1997) Through a Glass Brightly (Beryl Bainbridge, abr Di Spiers, read by Geoffrey Palmer)
(08-08-1997) The Cantilever Principle (Mary Morrissy, abr Di Spiers, read by Niamh Cusack)
(11 to 22-08-1997) Ice-Candy-Man (Bapsi Sidhwa, abr Pat McLoughlin, read by Meera Syal) The story of a young girl living in Lahore before and after the partition of India.
(25-08-1997) Don't Ask Me Why - The Tall Shadow (Meiling Jin, read by Amanda Gordon) Recorded live.
(26-08 to 11-09-1997) Larry's Party (Carol Shields, abr Doreen Estall, read by William Hope)
(12-09-1997) A Shooting Season (Rose Tremain)
(15 to 26-09-1997) One By One In The Darkness (Deirdre Madden, abr Doreen Estall, read by Maggie Cronin)
(29-09 to 14-10-1997) Angel (Anita Mason, abr Jane Marshall, read by Barbara Flynn)
(15-10-1997) Jamie (Erica Wagner, read by Nigel Anthony) From Wagner's collection of short stories, Gravity.
(16-10-1997) Gravity (Erica Wagner, read by Liza Ross) From Wagner's collection of short stories, Gravity.
(17-10-1997) The Great Leonardo (Erica Wagner, unknown reader) From Wagner's collection of short stories, Gravity.
(20-10 to 04-11-1997) Here On Earth (Alice Hoffman, abr Pat McLoughlin, read by Buffy Davis)
(05-11-1997) Alison Reid reads `With Every Tick of the Heart', by Candida McWilliam, taken from `The Catch Collection of Short Stories'.
(06-11-1997) Patrick McGrady reads `Smoker' by Rachel Cusk, from `The Catch Collection of Short Stories'.
(07-11-1997) Mina Anwar reads `The Tower of Silence' by Nargis Walker, from `The Catch Collection of Short Stories'.
(10 to 26-11-1997) Hen's Teeth' by Manda Scott - the Scottish thriller that was shortlisted for the Orange Prize. Read by Siobhan Redmond
(27-11 to 03-12-1997) The New Woman's Hour Book Of Short Stories (ed Di Speirs)
1: God & Slaves (Clare Boylan, read by Fiona Shaw)
2: Some Are Born To Sweet Delight (Nadine Gordimer, read by Emma Fielding)
3: On The Antler (E Annie Proulx, read by William Roberts)
4: North Sea Crossing (Helen Dunmore, read by Nigel Anthony)
5: Hairball (Margaret Atwood, read by Liza Ross)
(04 to 11-12-1997) Ladies Of Letters (Carol Hayman & Lou Wakefield, read by Patricia Routledge & Prunella Scales)
(12-12-1997) Missing The Midnight - Light (Jane Gardam, unknown reader)
(15-12-1997) The Girl With The Golden Ears (Jane Gardam, Eileen Atkins)
(16-12-1997) Miss Mistletoe (Jane Gardam, read by Harriet Walter)
(17 to 24-12-1997) The Woman's Hour Christmas Collection (NB: No programme on Christmas Day or Boxing Day.)
1: The Spirit Of The Tree (Clare Boylan, read by Niamh Cusack)
2: Christmas Lists (Fay Weldon, read by Harriet Walter)
3: Season Of Goodwill (Penelope Lively, read by Penelope Wilton)
4: Euston (Maeve Binchy, read by Frances Tomelty)
5: Clap Hands, Here Comes Charlie (Beryl Bainbridge, read by June Barrie)
6: Caput Apri (Helen Simpson, read by Geoffrey Palmer)
7: Little Lewis Has Had A Lovely Sleep (Elizabeth Jolley, read by Nicolette McKenzie)
(30-12-1997) The Birds (Daphne du Maurier, unknown reader)
(31-12-1997) No programme ('the best of the Woman's Hour year').
All series/one-off pieces transmitted between 8am and 6pm...
(07-05 to 11-06-1997) The Oldest Member (P G Wodehouse) Maurice Denham stars as the doyen of Prior's Heath Golf Club in stories by P G Wodehouse. (Wed 12:25pm; 30m)
5: The Magic Plus-Fours - With Jon Glover, David Simeon, Joe Dunlop, Melanie Hudson and Julian Dutton.
6: There's Always Golf - With Helen Atkinson Wood, Michael Fenton-Stevens, David Simeon and Alan Thompson.
(22-05 to 19-07-1997) Travels With My Aunt (Graham Greene, dram Rene Basilico) Starring Dame Hilda Bracket as Aunt Augusta and Charles Kay as Henry Pulling. With Roger Sloman, Liz Smith, Stephen Thorne, Alex Lowe, Teresa Gallagher, Moris Farhi, Sidney Kean, Felix Dexter, William Hootkins and Robert Rietty. (Thur 10:00am; 30m) (NB: Repeated 30-09 to 28-10-1997, Tues 6:30pm)
1: A London crematorium... and a meeting that will transform the life of a retired suburban bank manager.
2: Henry makes a tentative suggestion for a day at the seaside... but Aunt Augusta has more ambitious plans.
3: A little excitement on the Orient Express... and local trouble in Istanbul.
4: Henry finds his own reasons to visit France, and Aunt Augusta is less than happy with the outcome.
5: A river boat in Paraguay. The staid suburban bank manager has travelled a long way from Southwood.
(18-06 to 23-07-1997) North East Of Eden (Peter Kerry) A six-part comedy. With Joan Sims, Rebecca Front and James Garbutt. Director Kathy Smith. (NB: Repeated from 02-12 into 1998, Mondays 6:30pm) (Wed 12:35pm; 30m)
1: There is not much to do in Paradise other than fish and drink, as Marcia learns when she inherits her uncle's medical practice. Gone are London's theatres, cinemas and wine bars, and her man, Clem. Instead, she has the local pub for entertainment and a selection of slightly dodgy fishermen. But is it really that bad?
2: Somewhere off the North East coast there is something strange happening under the water, with navy submarine manoeuvres. But above the sea on Paradise Island, Ralph and William are having their own troubles adhering to the EEC fish quotas. Marcia, in the meantime, is still adjusting to a quieter lifestyle.
3: In her bid to settle on Paradise, Marcia decides to take time out from medicine and join in with a few local activities. The lifeboat drill on the Bobby Vee is not quite what she had in mind for a fun night out, but what else is there to do on this remote island?
4: The annual festival of St Marcus brings a convoy of tourists to Paradise Island. However, the celebrations are marred by a mysterious illness, and the torchlit parade is threatened.
5: Marcia decides to inject a little culture into Paradise and starts a film club. But will French art triumph over `Mad Max III'? Probably not.
6: Joseph finds a relic - a piece of `the cross' - and pilgrims come from miles around to Paradise Island. Marcia, meanwhile, is praying for a miracle, when Clern comes to visit.
(26-06 to 17-07-1997) The Female Ghost (dram Christopher Hawes) Four ghostly tales by famous women. Director Marion Nancarrow. (NB: Episodes 1-3 only were repeated 10-11 to 24-11-1997, Mondays 11:30pm.) (Thur 10:00am; 30m)
1: The Cold Embrace (Mary Baddon) When Josef, a handsome young German artist, dispassionately betrays his delicate fiancee, her revenge is eerily appropriate. With Stephanie Turner, Jonathan Firth and Alison Pettitt.
2: Man Sized In Marble (Enid Nesbit) For newlyweds Charles and Laura, their housekeeper's dread of All Saints' Eve seems laughable - until the day itself arrives. With Carolyn Jones, Stephen Critchlow and Deborah Berlin.
3: Afterward (Edith Wharton) After an unexpected windfall on their American mine, Ned and Mary move to a dream home in England, but their past is catching up with them. With Buffy Davis, Carolyn Jones and John Guerrasio.
4: The Demon Lover (Elizabeth Bowen) Mrs Drover's nervous return to her old London house in the Blitz is compounded by a letter on the hall table, and the reminder of a rendezvous she cannot recollect. With Maggie Steed, Jenny Howe and Jonathan Keeble.
(02 to 23-07-1997) Better Than Sex - Four more writers explore a sensuous experience that gives them intense pleasure. (NB: Repeated in December, Mondays 9:15pm) (Wed 9:45am; 15m)
1: Meetings With Pelicans (Howard Jacobson) `It was while I was lounging against the bonnet of the car, trying to make a crisp and cheese sandwich, that the pelican paddled up. I called to him `Come nearer'. Which he did. Then I said `Open your mouth'. And he did.'
2: Secret River Bathing (Adam Thorpe) It is one thing to share one's passion for swimming naked in the hidden rivers of rural France, quite another to divulge the precise location.
3: Five O'Clock In The Afternoon (Timberlake Wertenbaker) `It started in childhood with the late sun drying the sea off my back, the prickle of salt, the sound of the tide shifting.'
4: Second-Hand Pleasures (Jeanette Winterson) `My nostrils flare, my breath quickens, my heart pounds, my wallet opens. I cannot rest until I am alone in the farthermost edge, wedge, ledge of the shop, lying along the skirting board, legs propped, reading'.
(19-07 to 09-08-1997) People Like Us (John Morton) Chris Langham, aka hapless broadcaster Roy Mallard, offers an impression of the day-to-day business of four more ordinary occupations. (Sat 10:00am; 30m)
1: The Mother - Lynne Turner has one of the most complex, demanding and influential jobs that a person could have.
2: The Bank Manager - No synopsis.
3: The Pilot - In this programme he finds himself on the flight deck of a commercial airline.
4: The Photographer - This week, Mallard turns his incisive gaze on what it is like to be a photographer
(24-07 to 14-08-1997) Capital Gains (Collin Johnson) A four-part drama series. With Peter Jones, Stephen Thorne, Celestine Randall and Justine Midda. (Thur 10:00am; 30m)
1: Seed Capital - Billionaire philanthropist Julius Hutch has never voted, but when his wife leaves home and a Compulsory Purchase Order arrives, he takes action.
2: Stake Capital - When an act of civil disobedience centred around a tea break fails to bring results, Julius Hutch, the leader of the Tree Party, turns to games of chance.
3: Development Capital - There must be a way to stop The Haiku Jack Consortium from covering the land in concrete. Julius Hutch turns to the law - and goes beyond it.
4: Political Capital - At last Julius Hutch has the answer, but is it too late? If a desperate mission succeeds, Julius can make his first speech in Parliament.
(30-07 to 03-09-1997) Protesting Too Much (Kate Brooke & Sally Phillips) A six-part comedy drama, set just before the last general election. With John Fortune, Eleanor Bron and Louisa Milwood-Haigh. (Wed 12:25pm; 30m)
1: A bumbling Conservative MP finds himself living in a tree to protest the new by-pass in his constituency. His wife, Hermione, sees her husband as the new Dante.
2: Conservative MP George Dank ascends a tree in protest at the building of the new bypass, and Robbins tries to find something to smear Dank's good name.
3: Cuts at the university mean Hermione loses her job, which means she is free to join her husband and the other road protestors full-time.
4: The smear hits the papers, and Robbins has discovered what he believes to be a lunch-for-questions scenario. Meanwhile, Hermione is busy coaching the protestors in seige tactics, and Anne falls in love.
5: The protestors lose the court case and the road is to go ahead. George and Hermione hatch a plan to steal a rare stuffed owl and place it in the woods.
6: The eviction order is finally served and battle commences just as the election starts. Will George come down from his tree voluntarily? Will the DTP play dirty? Will Anne finally get her man?
(21-08 to 25-09-1997) One Flat Summer (Dave Sheasby) A six-part drama. With Gerald McDermott as Ken and Gillian Bevan as Margaret. Director David Hunter. (Thur 10:00am; 30m)
1: The Craven Stakes - As the 1996 flat racing season opens, newly redundant clothing salesman Ken Warburton finds himself adrift and drawn into the serious world of gambling.
2: The 2,000 Guineas - Excited by a good win at Newmarket and a promising partnership, redundant Ken is drawn deeper into the serious world of gambling.
3: The Derby - For Ken, the stakes have been raised by a big win at Newmarket and the attentions of the mysterious Racecourse Rita. But the home front has been badly neglected.
4: The Eclipse Stakes - A big loss on the Derby has shattered Ken's gambling partnership with Betting Shop Curly, and he now turns to Racecourse Rita and the legendary Tam Robertshaw.
5: A big win under the guidance of the legendary Tam Robertshaw has put Ken into a new league and into the dubious role as courier for the lovely Racehorse Rita. Is he seriously out of his depth?
6: With his family despairing and his dad dead, Ken cannot quite locate the money he liberated as courier for the lovely Racecourse Rita, and is being pursued. Everything now rests on the St Leger.
(22-08 to 19-09-1997) Libel (dram Matthew Solon) Libel barrister Manuel Barca presents five maverick courtroom dramas which created a sensation in their day. (Fri 10:00am; 30m)
1: Fruit-Flavoured Mincing Heap Of Mother Love - Cassandra was the nickname given to the vicious but brilliant critic, Connor of the Mirror. But he bit off more than he could chew when he implied that Liberace was a homosexual.
2: They Filled Themselves Like Tanks With Whiskey - Three top Labour politicians - Bevan, Phillips and Crossman - were accused of being drunk at a conference in Venice. They sued to save their reputations.
3: I Have Not The Right To Be Your Wife - MGM's film `Rasputin, the Mad Monk' left little to the imagination. Princess Youssoupoff inspired one of the characters and was raped in the film. She sued.
4: A Pot Of Paint - In a pamphlet which was circulated amongst artists and patrons, Ruskin accused Whistler of ``flinging a pot of paint in the public's face'' when he exhibited his `Nocturne in Black and Gold'. In the trial that ensued, arguments were used that still apply today.
5: This I Cannot Forget - In his bestseller, `Exodus', Leon Uris mentioned by name a prisoner-doctor at Auschwitz who performed experiments in surgery without anaesthetic. The doctor sued and both won and lost his case.
(25 to 29-08-1997) Screwtape Letters - Letters From A Senior To A Junior Devil (C S Lewis, read by Ian Richardson) (Mon-Fri 8:45am; 15m)
(10-09 to 15-10-1997) Eastern Mix (Philip Afshar) Six-part comedy drama about next-door neighbours who start an import business. With Harmage Singh Kalirai, Kathryn Apanowicz and Annette Kerr. (Wed 12:25pm; 30m)
1: Khalid decides to spend the last of his redundancy money on handicrafts from Pakistan. Has he been spending too much time reminiscing about home with neighbour Florence?
2: When the handicraft samples arrive from Lahore, Florence and Khalid devise a scam to arouse interest from local buyers. Meanwhile, the rest of the Miah household becomes obsessed with cable television, and Carol has a confession to make.
3: Florence and Khalid are reported to the council for running a business from home, Samantha is pursued at her aerobics class, and Sahra and Rahni are being suspiciously helpful.
4: Florence has to attend a sales meeting when Khalid hurts his back, and Samantha has an announcement to make.
5: Khalid has still not come round to Samantha's plan to take an Open University degree, which is creating a stressful atmosphere for everyone.
6: Khalid is offered a job that would answer all the Miahs' money worries. But how will he tell Florence that this means the end of Eastern Mix?
(15 to 19-09-1997) Speak After The Beep (Michael Frayn, performed by Martin Jarvis) Five collections of new-fangled messages. (Mon-Fri 8:45am; 15m)
(23-08 to 27-09-1997) Tidal Talk From The Rock Pool (Unknown) A six-part series in which residents of the rocky shore reveal the truth about life between the tides. (NB: I could find no information on when Episode 3 was broadcast, it should have been scheduled for the day of Diana's funeral though didn't appear in the listings.) (Sat 5:40pm; 10m)
1: Bill Wallis plays the periwinkle who recalls his near-death experience when he was swallowed by a seagull.
2: Life is no fun for the hermit crab (played by Geoffrey Palmer), living in a shell that leaks, with a useless ragworm, a parasitic barnacle and an anemone who performs aerobics all day on his roof. Nipping is the only consolation for the crabby landlord.
4: Dame Judi Dench plays the limpet, whose destiny is to be stuck fast to a rock, dreaming of life on the high seas.
5: Greg Proops plays a small but tough-talking goby fish.
6: Tony Robinson plays a lugworm whose excavating days come to an end when he decides to break free.
(29-09 to 01-10-1997) How To Beat Sir Humphrey (Antony Jay, abr Jane Marshall, read by Derek Fowlds) Three-part reading of Jay's novel 'Every Citizen's Guide To Beating Officialdom. (Wed 8:45am; 15m)
(02 to 23-10-1997) Tales From The Islands (Joseph Conrad) Four haunting plays based on Conrad's stories of the Malay Archipelago. Starring John Nettles. Director Nigel Bryant.(Thur 10:00am; 30m)
1: The Secret Sharer (dram Lindsay Clarke) On his first voyage as ship's captain, Marlow rescues a man who bears an uncanny resemblance to himself. With Adam Shaw.
2: The Planter Of Malata (dram Sally Hedges) In helping the woman he secretly loves to search for her lost betrothed, the mysterious Renouard leads her to the ghostly island of Malata. With Michael Maloney.
3: Karain (dram Colin Haydn Evans) Langston is eager to release an island chief from a strange haunting. A Victorian sixpence seems an unlikely cure. With Nicholas Farrell.
4: Because Of The Dollars (dram Lindsay Clarke) Who would have thought that a cargo of recalled currency could lead Captain Davidson into such danger? With Martin Shaw.
(03 to 24-10-1997) Gerry's Bar (Gerry Anderson) Four further reflections on life seen through the bottom of a glass, darkly. (NB: Repeated Sundays 6:15pm.) (Fri 9:45am; 15m)
1: White Mice and Deja Vu.
2: Fairies I Have Known.
3: The Business We Call Show.
4: Flying Food and Awkward Moments.
(22-10 to 26-11-1997) Dinner Ladies (wri/dir Turan Ali) A six-part comedy drama. With Barbara Dickson, Jean Heywood, Liz Smith and Brigit Forsyth. (Wed 12:25pm; 30m)
1: Surprise Parties - Bev has had a row with Gary. Jo is late, Sally has crashed the moped, and Sophie is pathetic. Just another ordinary day for the dinner ladies of Old Dale School... or is it?
2: Hare-Brained Schemes - It's official... the school kitchens are being privatised. But will the girls take it lying down?
3: A Motley Crew - After the shock of Sheila's death, the girls have decided to bid for the catering contract as `Sheila's Kitchen'. Mrs Ollerenshaw is determined to stop them.
4: The Professionals - The dinner ladies' bid for the catering contract is not being taken seriously. It is time to get some professionals on their side.
5: Taking The Bull By The Horns - The crunch is coming and the dinner ladies must get tough. Industrial espionage and attempted murder - do the girls know what they are doing?
6: A Very Mixed Grilling - The dinner ladies' bid for the catering contract faces the final hurdle - the interview. Mrs Ollerenshaw is doing her utmost to thwart their chances.
(30-10 to 27-11-1997) A Caribbean Mystery (Agatha Christie, dram Michael Bakewell) Starring June Whitfield as Miss Marple. With Windsor Davies, Carolyn Jones, Christopher Wright, George A Cooper, Yvonne Edgell, Jenny Lee, Alison Pettitt, Yvonne Edgett and David Thorpe. Director Enyd Williams. (Thur 10:00am; 30m)
1: The peace of a beautiful tropical island is shattered by murder.
2: Was Major Palgrave's sudden death accidental, or was it murder?
3: The authorities have been called in and a murder investigation is under way.
4: Miss Marple needs an ally, but who can she turn to?
5: Two murders and now an attempted suicide - are they somehow linked?
(03 to 24-12-1997) Ballylenon (Christopher Fitz-Simon) Four-part comedy drama series set in Ballylenon, Co Donegal. With TP McKenna, Margaret D'Arcy and Stella McCusker. Director Eoin O'Callaghan. (Wed 12:25pm; 30m)
1: The discovery that a ramshackle cottage may have belonged to the family of American president Hoover presents Phonsie with a major financial opportunity. But, as ever, Vivienne Hawthorne (nee Boal) may prove a fly in the ointment.
2: The death of Canon Friel has caused quite an upset among the faithful, especially Phonsie, who had expected the cleric to sell him an interesting property.
3: While Phonsie wrestles to gain possession of a church property, rumours that the Hawthornes may not go to Scotland become a very real possibility.
4: Packy McGoldrick, suitor to Josie Doherty, has long proved a source of aggravation, but a phone call from Birmingham gives Phonsie the ammunition he needs.
(24 to 31-12-1997) The Pickwick Papers (Charles Dickens, dram Martyn Read) With Clive Francis, Bill Wallis, Christopher Scoular and John Duttine. Director Sue Wilson. (Weekdays 11:30am, repeated 9:30pm)
1: In which the Pickwickians set forth on their journey - and encounter a mysterious stranger.
2: Elopement, Elections and Extravaganzas! - In which Mr Pickwick makes a proposition and engages a servant - and a friend suffers for love.
3: A Romantic, Nocturnal Adventure! - In which Mr Pickwick experiences a nocturnal misunderstanding and receives an unwelcome letter.
4: Christmas At Dingley Dell! - In which Mr Pickwick experiences spends a merry Christmas with old friends and is summoned before the majesty of the law.
5: Mr Pickwick Goes To Prison - In which Mr Pickwick is introduced to an unwelcome though not uninteresting scene in the great drama of life.
6: Freedom, Friendship & A Satisfactory Conclusion! - In which Mr Pickwick's obstinacy comes under seige and everything is concluded to the satisfaction of everybody.
(25-12-1997) The Archers: Drinks At The Dower House (Unknown) Caroline Pemberton and other Ambridge villagers reminisce about the past year. Plus a chance to hear again some of the high spots of the series from the last 12 months. (NB: A special edition.) (Thur 10:00am; 60m)
(31-12-1997) Little Novels (Wilkie Collins, dram John Arden.) Five Victorian mysteries. (NB: Continued into 1998.) (Wed 12:25pm; 30m)
THE AFTERNOON PLAY
2:00pm Monday (60mins), Wednesday (45mins) & Thursday (60mins); Only standalone plays used the Afternoon Play moniker in listings (usually the Thursday programme); In 1997 the Tuesday slot was used for Thirty Minute Theatre and the Friday slot for the repeat of the Classic Serial.
(02-06-1997) Diamonds - 3: Diamond Cut Diamond (John Peacock)
(04-06-1997) A Grove Of Straight Trees (Nick Warburton)
(05-06-1997) Riding With Buffalo Bill (Tim Rhys)
(09-06-1997) The Man In The Elephant Mask - 1: Patron Saint Of Outcasts (Peter Wolf)
(11-06-1997) Nimby (Stephen Dinsdale & Jerome Vincent)
(12-06-1997) Act Of Faith (David Napthine)
(16-06-1997) The Man In The Elephant Mask - 2: Diseases & Messiahs (Peter Wolf)
(18-06-1997) Patricia's Policy - 1: Poison Pens (Tony Mulholland)
(19-06-1997) Raskolnikov's Axe (Christopher Fitz-Simon)
(23-06-1997) The Hong Kong Holding Company - 1 (Matthew Solon)
(25-06-1997) Patricia's Policy - 2: Women Beware Women (Tony Mulholland)
(26-06-1997) The Bounty Hunter (Tanika Gupta)
(30-06-1997) The Hong Kong Holding Company - 2 (Matthew Solon)
(02-07-1997) Patricia's Policy - 3: The Big Picture (Tom Mulholland)
(03-07-1997) Killing Susan (Vivienne Allen)
(07-07-1997) Wayne, A Growth Industry (Unknown)
(09-07-1997) Patricia's Policy - 4: Crunch (Tom Mulholland)
(10-07-1997) Change Of Heart (Robin Kelly)
(14-07-1997) Road To Paradise (Julia Pascal)
(16-07-1997) My Uncle Freddie - 1: Heart's Ache, Heart's Ease (Alex Ferguson)
(17-07-1997) A Fine & Private Place (Peter Moffat)
(21-07-1997) The Whistle-Blower (Greg Cullen)
(23-07-1997) My Uncle Freddie - 2: A Time Of Deep Affliction (Alex Ferguson)
(24-07-1997) The Beauty Of Bone (Bridget Lawless)
(28-07-1997) Pilgrimage - 1 (Zenna Henderson, dram Catherine Czerkawska)
(30-07-1997) My Uncle Freddie - 3: A Catalogue Of Disasters (Alex Ferguson)
(31-07-1997) An Oscar For Janice (Janet George)
(04-08-1997) Pilgrimage - 2 (Zenna Henderson, dram Catherine Czerkawska)
(06-08-1997) Love Divine - 1: The Holy Club (Martyn Wade)
(07-08-1997) Skeleton (Tanika Gupta)
(11-08-1997) Sakuntala (Kalidasa)
(13-08-1997) Love Divine - 2: Saving Souls (Martyn Wade)
(14-08-1997) Do The Needful (Mahesh Dattani)
(18-08-1997) Wobbly Eggs (Mary Cooper)
(20-08-1997) Love Divine - 3: Marriage & Separation (Martyn Wade)
(21-08-1997) Scorching Winds (Deepak Verma)
(25-08-1997) Electricity - 1: Nothing Is Forever (Victoria Glendinning, dram John Peacock)
(27-08-1997) Thackeray - 1: Battle Cry (Barbara Clegg & Olwen Wymark)
(28-08-1997) Where Waters Meet (Yvette Z'Graggen, adap Sara Coward)
(01-09-1997) Electricity - 2: Let There Be Light (Victoria Glendinning, dram John Peacock)
(03-09-1997) Thackeray - 2: This Blessed Plot (Barbara Clegg & Olwen Wymark)
(04-09-1997) Forgotten Army (Tom Wright)
(08-09-1997) David - 1: Bathsheba (Nick Warburton)
(10-09-1997) Thackeray - 3: Death & The Ice Maiden (Barbara Clegg & Olwen Wymark)
(11-09-1997) Learning The Language (Harwant Bains)
(15-09-1997) David - 2: Absalom (Nick Warburton)
(17-09-1997) The Peggers & The Creelers - 1: Salt Sea Strawberries (Catherine Czerkawska)
(18-09-1997) Cries Across The Tracks (Laurence Allan)
(22-09-1997) Broad Canvasses - 1: The Thirst Quenchers (Nigel Baldwin)
(24-09-1997) The Peggers & The Creelers - 2: The Water's Wide (Catherine Czerkawska)
(25-09-1997) Fossils (Andy Rattenbury)
(29-09-1997) Broad Canvasses - 2: `The Secret Sound Of The Sitka Spruce (Nigel Baldwin)
(01-10-1997) The Peggers & The Creelers - 3: The World's Ill Divided (Catherine Czerkawska)
(02-10-1997) Inside Outlander (Carol McGuigan)
(06-10-1997) Broad Canvasses - 3: Sarah (Nigel Baldwin)
(08-10-1997) The House In Gallows Lane - 1: The Fortune-Teller (John Dickson Carr, dram Peter Ling)
(09-10-1997) Dat's Love (Leonora Brito)
(13-10-1997; Rpt) The Electric Angel (Beatrice Colin)
(15-10-1997) The House In Gallows Lane - 2: The Point Of A Pin (John Dickson Carr, dram Peter Ling)
(16-10-1997) Deadline (John Fletcher)
(20-10-1997; Rpt) Blood Of The Ring Finger (Jane Cassidy)
(22-10-1997) To Wake The Dead - 1: The Riddle Of The Stone (John Dickson Carr, dram Peter Ling)
(23-10-1997) The Boy Who Thought He Was An Elephant (John McClelland)
(27-10-1997) Birdsong - 1 (Sebastian Faulks, dram Nick Stafford)
(29-10-1997) To Wake The Dead - 2: The Secret In The Stone (John Dickson Carr, dram Peter Ling)
(30-10-1997; Rpt) Who Was Emily Davison? (Rose Tremain)
(03-11-1997) Birdsong - 2 (Sebastian Faulks, dram Nick Stafford)
(05-11-1997) The Blind Barber (John Dickson Carr, dram Peter Ling)
(06-11-1997) The Grey Man (Gill Adams)
(10-11-1997) Birdsong - 3 (Sebastian Faulks, dram Nick Stafford)
(12-11-1997) Mysteries Of The London Underground - 1: The Metropolitan Line Murder (Baroness Orczy, adap Michael Butt)
(13-11-1997) Wasteland (Nigel Moffat)
(17-11-1997; Rpt) Hand In Glove - 1: A Good Shaking (Stephen Mulrine)
(19-11-1997) Mysteries Of The London Underground - 2: The Phantom Billboard (Michael Gilbert, adap Michael Butt)
(20-11-1997) Little Lower Than The Angels (Rachel Joyce)
(24-11-1997; Rpt) Hand In Glove - 2: Fast & Loose (Stephen Mulrine)
(26-11-1997) Mysteries Of The London Underground - 3: Death On The District Line (John Oxenham, adap Michael Butt)
(27-11-1997) Long Time Man (Judy Upton)
(01-12-1997; Rpt) Hand In Glove - 3: Rights & Wrongs (Stephen Mulrine)
(03-12-1997) Who Sings The Hero - 1: No Joan Of Arc (Bryony Lavery)
(04-12-1997) Shells On A Woven Chord (Akulah Agbami)
(08-12-1997) Hand In Glove - 1: Testing Times (Stephen Mulrine)
(10-12-1997) Who Sings The Hero - 2: Under Siege (Melissa Murray)
(11-12-1997) Finding Fellows (Nick Fisher)
(15-12-1997) Hand In Glove - 2: Win Some, Lose Somem (Stephen Mulrine)
(17-12-1997) Who Sings The Hero - 3: Rosa Parks (Bonnie Greer)
(18-12-1997) Clever As Paint (Kim Morrisey)
(22-12-1997) Hand In Glove - 3: Not Proven (Stephen Mulrine)
(24-12-1997) Bethlehem (Bernard Walke, adap Melville Jones)
(25-12-1997 A Rock 'N' Roll Christmas (Sue Teddern)
(29-12-1997) A Christmas Card (Paul Theroux, dram Nick Warburton)
(31-12-1997) From the Bottom Of A Well (Claire Dowie)
2:00pm Tuesdays and briefly, after a three-month break, 11:00pm Thursdays (as noted); NB: The previously included 'Fiction Science Not Science Fiction' was a documentary series about science fiction literature.
(03-06-1997) Enoch Soames (Max Beerbohm, dram Eric Pringle) Convinced that posterity will acknowledge his genius; fin-de-siecle poet Enoch Soames accepts the devil's offer to glimpse the future: he is to be in the British Museum Reading Room this very afternoon! With Nigel Anthony; David Bannerman; Ioan Meredith; Christopher Wright and Rachel Atkins. Director David Blount.
(10-06-1997) Patty & Chips With Scraps (Mandy Precious) Lil has always been married; she has always been somebody's wife; but now; newly widowed; she must contemplate life alone with Albert's chip van. She befriends Mudassar; a young man who pushes her to emerge from the shadow of Albert. Together they take a cruise which turns into a voyage of discovery. With Rita Tushingham and Ravin J Ganatra. Director Kate Rowland. (NB: This is also listed in exactly the same fashion for 17-06-97. When it was actually tx'd, and what was in its place, is unknown - however, it was repeated on 13-11-1997.)
(17-06-1997) See note above.
(24-06-1997) Four Corners (Maya Chowdry) When 18-year-old Kavitaa's Scottish father and Indian mother argue over her birthday meal; she decides to mix her own ingredients. With Rina Mahoney; Hannah Chetty; Gary Lewis and Yasmin Sidwah.
(01-07-1997) Raising Patrick Doherty (Jessica Townsend) An irreverent comedy in which a London-Irish family spend the run-up to their patriarch's burial destroying his reputation; only to be faced with his resurrection. With Maggie McCarthy; Maureen O'Brien and Carolyn Jones. Director Cathryn Horn.
(08-07-1997) Take One Egg (Linda McLean) When Stella gets a new man; her jealous twin sister Katy decides to check him out. But will he be able to tell the twins apart? With Eliza Langland; Wendy Seager and Douglas Russell. Director Patrick Rayner.
(15-07-1997) The Lithium Waltz (Barry McKinley) With James Fleet as Billy. Question: You have just arrived in a mental asylum. Who do you ask for help when filling in the assessment form? Answer: The other inmates. With Mark Bonnar; John Turner and Kristin Milward. Director Peter Kavanagh.
(22-07-1997) Cold Call (Collin Johnson) Philip Swift is a hard-up would-be novelist. Needing to eat; he takes a job selling advertising space on the telephone. With Alistair McGowan; Deborah Findlay; David Verrey and Alice Arnold. Directed by Andy Jordan.
(19-07-1997) Waltzing With The Moon (Richard Downing) 1991. Stranded in his Sputnik; Sergei orbits the earth; forgotten; with only his photographs to witness his actions. With James Westaway; Struan Rodger and Richard Nicholls. Director Alison Hindell.
(23-10-1997; Thurs) Goodbye Kiss (Ronald Harewood) For Master Donny: a return to the South Africa he left as a youth offers a fragile hope of reconciliation. But it depends on Annie. With Tom Courtenay and Peggy Phango. Director Ned Chaillet.
(30-10-1997; Thurs) Twisted (Anthony Neilson) Taut psychological thriller. A convicted murderer and a criminologist engage in a desperate battle of wits to establish who is telling the truth and who: therefore: is the more dangerous. With Rufus Sewell and Suzanna Hamilton. Director Cathryn Horn.
(06-11-1997; Thurs) Fergus The Big Kiss (Phelim Rowland) Ireland's newest saint: St Fergus the Fecund: tells the real story of his martyrdom... With Stephen Hogan: Frank McCusker and Tony Rohr. Director Sally Avens.
(11-11-1997) Curds & Cream (Janet Paisley) A play is set in the Scottish border town of Hawick: against the real-life drama of families torn apart: unable to agree that women should have a bigger role in the town's all-male `Common Riding'. With Ann Scott-Jones: Sybil Wintrope and Ian Briggs. Director Mike Lloyd.
(13-11-1997; Thurs; Rpt) Party & Chips With Scraps (Mandy Precious) This year's Alfred Bradley Bursary Award-winner for verse drama. Lil is newly widowed. Having always been somebody's daughter or somebody's wife: she must now contemplate life alone with Albert's chip van. She befriends Mudassar: a young man who pushes her to emerge from the shadow of Albert: and together they take a cruise - a voyage of discovery. With Rita Tushingham and Ravin J Ganatra. Director Kate Rowland. (NB: Repeat from June.)
(18-11-1997) The Etiquette Of Friendship (Unknown) Jean and Will are old friends. Both have unsatisfactory love lives. She is outwardly confident: American. He is thoroughly English: reticent. They marry so that Jean can stay in the country. This begins to undermine the rock of their friendship. With Cathryn Harrison and Robert Harper. Director David Hunter.
(25-11-1997) Getting On (Aodhan Madden) A middle-aged Dublin bachelor struggles to cope with the recent death of his father. Starring Barry McGovern.
(02-12-1997) The Olivetti (Owen O'Neill) Jacinta has resigned herself to a job in a Belfast shirt factory. Then the gift of an Olivetti typewriter changes her life. With Aidan McArdle: James Ellis and Owen O'Neill.
(09-12-1997) Saying It With Flowers (Julia Stoneham) When Mr Jennings has an accident: Rhoda and Nicola take on the role of Good Samaritans. But Mr Jennings is not all he seems. With Lynn Farleigh: Tamsin Heatley and Graham Padden. Director Brian Lighthill.
(16-12-1997) Filet De Sole Veronique (Jyll Bradley) A feast of comic delights set in the Paris of the naughty 90s. A dishy young girl washes up in the kitchens of Chez Veronique: Paris's most prestigious fish restaurant. Has she come to steal Madame Veronique's famous recipe: or to save her sole? With Anna Carteret: Adjoa Andoh and Alison Pettitt.
(23-12-1997) Christmas Shopping (Max Hillman) On the seismic register of stress: shopping for Christmas presents is like simultaneously getting married and divorced and selling your home. So when two strangers meet in the mayhem of the high street: the odds seem stacked against romance. Director Cathryn Horn.
(30-12-1997) A Sense Of History (Jim Broadbent) In keeping his family estate intact: the 23rd Earl has had to resort to the occasional murder and a degree of coercion: but for a breed `that came over with William the Conqueror': this is hardly something new.
2:30pm Saturdays; Various lengths (as noted); Individual synopses where available.
(07-06-1997) The Stones Of Muncaster Cathedral (Robert Westall)
(14-06-1997) HMS Ulysses (Alastair Maclean, dram Nick McCarty)
(21-06-1997) The George's Wife (Elizabeth Jolley')
(28-06-1997) Lobby Lud (Douglas Livingstone)
(05-07-1997) PS I Love You (Graeme Curry)
(12-07-1997) The Westward Journey (Ellen Dryden)
(19-07-1997) Needles & Pinsa (Martin Lynch)
(26-07-1997) Tiller Girls (Ayshe Raif)
(02-08-1997) Ladies' Day (Lynne Truss)
(09-08-1997) Who Am I To You? (adap Rehan Sheikh & John Fletcher)
(16-08-1997) Legion Of The Lost (Paul Bryers)
(23-08-1997) School For Hope (Michael McLaverty, dram Damian Gorman)
(30-08-1997) Love Story (Erich Segal, dram Juliet Ace)
(06-09-1997) The Winslow Boy (Terence Rattigan)
(13-09-1997) Props (Mark Eden & Steve Nallon)
(20-09-1997) The Man From God Knows Where (Jane Cassidy)
(27-09-1997) Close Enough To Touch (Fred Lawless)
(04-10-1997) Shadowlands (William Nicholson)
(11-10-1997) Gaslight (Patrick Hamilton)
(18-10-1997; Rpt) Under The Loofah Tree (Giles Cooper)
(25-10-1997) The Third Gentleman (Ian Rankin)
(01-11-1997) The Flight Of Eric Strapp (Ronnie Smith)
(08-11-1997) Garden Tiger (Peter Reynolds)
(15-11-1997) Inmates (Allan Sutherland & Stuart Morris)
(22-11-1997) Postcards From The Swamp (Yana Stajno)
(29-11-1997) The Monarch Of The Glen (Compton Mackenzie, dram Ron Butlin)
(06-12-1997) Flight Of A Witch (Ellis Peters, dram Sally Hedges)
(13-12-1997) Black Narcissus (Rumer Godden, dram April de Angelis)
(20-12-1997) Bell, Book & Candle (John Van Druten)
(27-12-1997) The Affair At Grover Station (Willa Cather, adap Jonathan Holloway)
THE CLASSIC SERIAL
2:30pm Sundays (repeated, for the most part, Fridays 2:00pm); 60mins; Individual synopses where available; During the summer extra stories were transmitted instead of a Friday repeat: these are the Summer Serial beneath the main list.
(01-06-1997) Mansfield Park (Elizabeth Proud) With Hannah Gordon; Amanda Root; Michael Williams and Jane Lapotaire. Director Sue Wilson.
3: Portsmouth & After - There is pain and pleasure for Fanny when Mr Crawford secures William's promotion and expects more than her gratitude in return.
(08 to 15-06-1997) The Story Of An African Farm (Olive Schreiner; dram Marion Baraitser) With Deborah Berlin; Robert Harper; Alison Pettit and David Kossoff. Director David Blount.
1: Orphans Lyndall and Em are growing up on a Boer farm under the slipshod guardianship of Tant' Sannie. Their world is turned upside down with the arrival of the brutal Bonaparte Blenkins.
2: Em remains on the farm; but Lyndall is determined to flout convention and break free.
(22-06-1997) Agnes Grey (Anne Bronte; dram Judith Adams) A young woman dismays her family when she decides to earn her own living as a governess. Will her trials lead her to true love? With Poppy Miller; Robert Whelan and Alison Darling.
(29-06 to 13-07-1997) North & South (Elizabeth Gaskell; dram Charlotte Keatley) With Emily Mortimer; David Threlfall and Russell Dixon. Director Michael Fox.
1: Departures & Arrivals - A young woman; used to a gentle life in a Hampshire village; moves to Manchester where she is exposed to industrial conflict and extremes of wealth and poverty. Mill owner John Thornton is determined she should understand how things are done in the north.
2: Men & Gentleman - Mrs Hale is dangerously ill; but a secret visitor restores the family's spirits. Margaret flings herself into the midst of mob rioting; but her action is widely misunderstood.
3: Losses & Gains - Margaret is forced to tell a desperate lie to protect her brother; but is found out by Thornton; who assumes she must have a lover.
(20-07 to 10-08-1997) The Barchester Chronicles - The Small House At Allington (Anthony Trollope; dram Martyn Wade) With Alex Jennings; Julia Ford and Jamie Glover. Directed by Cherry Cookson. (NB: As the Summer Serial, and not repeated on Friday.)
1: In this fifth book in the series; we are introduced to one of Trollope's most charming heroines; Lily Dale; the impoverished niece of the squire of Allington; who rejects her childhood sweetheart in favour of the dashing but unscrupulous Adolphus Crosbie.
2: Blissfully happy in her engagement to Adolphus Crosbie; Lily Dale is much taken aback at his sudden departure to stay with the aristocratic de Courcys; whose daughter Alexandrina is an old flame.
3: While Adolphus Crosbie continues his stay at Courcy Castle, his fiancee Lily Dale endures the agony of separation, comforted only by his letters.
4: Despite being jilted, Lily swears she will love Adolphus until the day she dies. And indeed as the day of his wedding to Lady Alexandrina approaches, he appears to be having second thoughts.
(17 to 24-08-1997) The Scarlet Letter (Nathaniel Hawthorne, dram Greg Snow) The powerful story of passion and repression in 17th-century Boston. With Deborah Findlay, Caroline Graham and Michael Maloney. Director Tracey Neale.
1: Hester Prynne, with a new-born baby in her arms, stands on the scaffold as the crowd cries out for her execution. Her sin of adultery is marked by the scarlet letter `A' that she wears on her dress, but who should take the place by her side?
2: Arthur Dimmesdale is striving to bury a secret deep in his heart, but there is someone who has already discovered it.
(31-08 to 07-09-1997) The Aspern Papers (Henry James, dram Jane Beeson) With James Laurenson: Angela Pleasence and Moira Lister. Director Janet Whitaker. (NB: Back to The Classic Serial, and regular Friday repeats.)
1: In the romantic city of Venice: an American poet writes love letters and sonnets to the girl with beautiful eyes: Juliana Bordereau. Fifty years later: a literary bounty hunter will do anything to get a glimpse of the papers: but how high is the price?
2: The narrator has been allowed into the lives of Miss Bordereau and Miss Tina beacuse they need his money; but will it bring him any nearer to gaining the Aspern papers; and do they really exist?
(14 to 28-09-1997) Lorna Doone (R D Blackmore, Barry Letts) The romantic novel. With David Schofield; Alison Pettit and Janet Dale. Director Brian Lighthill.
1: John Ridd meets and falls in love with Lorna Doone.
2: Carver Doone tries to starve Lorna into marrying him: but John Ridd comes to her rescue.
3: Lorna is taken to London: and John thinks he has lost her for ever: until fate brings them together. But Carver Doone: John's enemy: has murderous plans.
(05 to 12-10-1997) The Lifted Veil (George Eliot, adap Jonathan Holloway) With Toby Stephens, Tim Pigott-Smith and Edward Michie. Director Jane Morgan.
1: Latimer can not only see into the future: he can also tell what people are thinking. But he fails to benefit from his clairvoyant gifts: and chooses to ignore the warning that he is given.
2: The death of his brother clears the way for Latimer to marry Bertha and for his premonition to be fulfilled. He chooses to forget his vision of a woman filled with hatred.
(19 to 26-10-1997) The Leopard (Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa, dram John Clifford) The great Sicilian novel. Starring Patrick Malahide as Fabrizio Corbera: Prince of Salina. With Richard Greenwood, Emma Currie and Crawford Logan. Director Patrick Rayner.
1: It is 1860 and Italy is in political turmoil. At his great palace in Palermo: the Prince of Salina decides that only desperate measures can save his ancient aristocratic family from the onslaught of change.
2: The prince's nephew has fallen in love with Angelica: daughter of the local mayor - a rich but vulgar man. The prince has to decide what matters more - his family pride or money in the bank.
(02 to 09-11-1997) Childhood's End (Arthur C Clarke, adap Tony Mulholland) With Steven Pacey: Philip Voss, Sarah-Jane Holm and Peter Jeffrey. Director Brian Lighthill.
1: Beginning - The world is at war. Self-destruction is inevitable. Then the Overlords arrive. But what is it they really want?
2: End - The Overlords have remained unseen: ruling the world from a distance: for over fifty years. Now they are about to reveal themselves...
(19-11 to 28-12-1997) War & Peace (Leo Tolstoy, dram Marcy Kahan & Mike Walker) The famous epic novel dramatised in ten parts. With Simon Russell Beale: Gerard Murphy, Richard Johnson, Leo McKern, Simon Russell Beale, Amanda Redman and Emily Mortimer. Directors Janet Whitaker & Eoin O'Callaghan. (NB: Replaced by another story on 21/12, continued on 28/12 and into 1998.)
1: It is 1805. Napoleon Bonaparte is threatening the peace of Europe. In St Petersburg and Moscow: aristocratic families gossip: intrigue and enjoy themselves: unaware that the threat will alter their lives for ever.
2: Disillusionment - It is 1805. The Austrians - Russia's allies - have been routed by Napoleon: leaving Kutuzov's army: and in particular Prince Andrei Bolkonsky: facing almost certain annihilation at Austerlitz.
3: It is 1806. Back from Austerlitz: Nikolai gets caught up in a duel between Pierre and Dolohov. Andrei is still missing as Lise gives birth.
4: It is 1807. With all of Europe teetering on the brink of war: only two powers stand against Napoleon - Great Britain at sea and Russia by land. And while Pierre Bezuhov has been betrayed by his wife: Andrei Bolkonsky prepares to rediscover love.
5: It is 1810. An uneasy peace reigns. Andrei realises that he has fallen in love with Natasha: but: as Christmas comes: all is not well in the Rostov family.
6: It is 1811. Despite the peace: Napoleon's troops are massing in Poland: while in Moscow disaster strikes the Rostovs when Natasha is seduced.
(21-12-1997) Charlie & The Great Glass Elevator (Roald Dahl, dram Malcolm McKee) Charlie Bucket has already won Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory: but there is a further surprise in store - a revolutionary new lift whisks Charlie and his grandparents into orbit: and an extraordinary adventure ensues. With Matthew Kelly: Josephine Tewson and Chris Emmett. Director Sue Wilson.
THE SUMMER SERIAL
2:00pm Fridays; 60mins; Transmitted in the Classic Serial's usual repeat slot.
(25-07 to 08-08-1997) All Things Betray Thee (Gwyn Thomas, dram Alan Plater) With Ian Hughes, Patrick Brennan, Manon Edwards and Melanie Walters. Directed by Alison Hindell.
1: Moonlea - 1835. A travelling harpist arrives in the new iron town of Moonlea in search of his friend. When he finds unrest and injustice, he tries not to become involved.
2: Wild Music - The iron furnaces in Moonlea are about to be closed, but Leigh cannot persuade John Simon to leave.
3: The Verdict - The iron workers' peaceful uprising has been mown down by soldiers: and Leigh has become an accessory to a murder.
(15 to 31-08-1997) A Pair Of Blue Eyes (Thomas Hardy, dram Jane Beeson) With Jeremy Irons as Henry Knight, Janet Maw as Elfride and Michael Maloney as Stephen, Nigel Stock, Alan Dudley and Katherine Parr. Director Cherry Cookson.
1: The daughter of a local parson makes an unsuccessful attempt at eloping with a young architect.
2: After their unsuccessful attempt to elope, Elfride and Stephen part with the hope that one day her father will agree to the match. She returns home to find a new suitor waiting for her. W
3: Since an accidental encounter with her old love Stephen, Elfride is painfully resolved to tell Henry Knight the truth about her past.
4:45pm Weekdays; 15mins; Individual synopses where available; Two stories from each week were usually repeated as the Saturday/Sunday Late Story.
(02-06-1997) Price Of Fame (Michael Carson, read by Stephen Thorne) In this new story, celebrity status loses its appeal.
(03-06-1997) Bubbles On Dark Water (Mairin O'Connor, read by Ann Marie Horan) Holidaying in the West of Ireland, a housewife takes account of her life and decides to make a few changes.
(04-06-1997) Essex Dogs (DJ Taylor, read by Chris Scott) A new story about three unlikely thieves.
(05-06-1997) Between the Worlds (Nawal Gadalla, read by Robert Harper) Schoolboy Jason longs to explore the Greek myths, but his parents' idea of a package holiday is not at all what he had in mind.
(06-06-1997) Famous For One Thing (Mat Coward, read by Chris Harris) `I suppose I had an idea that writing about what had happened to me would be therapeutic. Would help me to move on from an unpleasant - but not terribly significant - experience. And it might have worked. If it hadn't been for that competition.'
(09-06-1997) Secret Lunches (wri/read by Angela Lambert) An unwholesome bargain is struck between a newly-married couple and the husband's manipulative employer.
(10-06-1997) Lap Of The Gods (Julia Stoneham, unk reader) All around them the aromatic cliffs rose, cupping warm air resonant with the humming of bees. 'I have a sensation,' said the man, looking out past their boat, 'that nothing exists beyond this place.'
(11-06-1997) Nationalists (Christopher Burns, read by Keith Drinkel) In the midst of a civil war, a man is forced to decide between helping in the fight for freedom or staying with his dying daughter.
(12-06-1997) The Red Jag (Ray French, read by Iestyn Jones) To the young boy, the red Jag signified success and prosperity - something to admire. To his father, it signified something else.
(13-06-1997) India Season - Diminuendo (Amit Chaudhuri, read by Art Malik) The first of an occasional series of short stories by Indian writers.
(16-06-1997) Malvolio's Revenge (John Mortimer, read by Russell Hunter) A week of comic stories from the Pleasance Theatre, Edinburgh, recorded at last year's festival fringe. The tale of the pompous steward from Shakespeare's `Twelfth Night' who finally gets his own back on Sir Toby Belch.
(17-06-1997) An Alternative Romance (Iris Doyle, read by Susie Maguire) A wife explains the ups and downs of domestic life in a transvestite household.
(18-06-1997) Tom Edison's Shaggy Dog (Kurt Vonnegut, read by Paul Birchard) `I've been a drifter ever since the age of nine, since Edison set up his laboratory next to my home and showed me the intelligence analyser.'
(19-06-1997) The Trouble With Wagner (Patricia Hannah, read by Vivienne Dixon) `Composers don't spring fully fledged into fame. They have to find that little quirk which will fix them forever in the public mind. Whether it is syphilis or silk underwear or being deaf, a composer won't get anywhere without one... '.
(20-06-1997) Casting (wri/read by Arthur Smith) A would-be writer heads for the pub to audition the actors for a play he is taking to the Edinburgh Festival.
(23-06-1997) Stigmata (Jennifer Cornell, read by Jean Butler) A woman returns from work to be confronted by a strange figure slumped across her doorstep.
(24-06-1997) Dog Meat Dreams (Tom Bryan, read by Angus Macinnes) A man recalls the exploits of his great-grandfather's brother off the coast of Newfoundland last century - including the single-handed capture of a sea monster.
(25-06-1997) Planet Love (Patricia Alderman, read by Robert Glenister) `Who is your ideal man?' William enquires. `Richard Branson, Andre Agassi and Martin Amis,' replies Antonia.
(26-06-1997) Breaking Eggs (Penelope Fenny, read by Susan Cookson) After ten long years of relentless hard work, Marion and Jo have almost paid off the debts on their village shop. But Jo announces she has had enough. Will she walk out just as things are getting better?
(27-06-1997) India Season - Hyacinths In Their Unholy Bloom (Sunetra Gupta, read by Shelly King) A specially commissioned story by one of India's best thriller writers. In Paris, a father and son are joined by a mysterious ghost.
(30-06-1997) No programme.
(01-07-1997) Chinese Season - Marvels Of A Floating City Chinese Season (Xi Xi, trans Eva Hung, read by Su-Lin Looi) The wonders of the world's most astonishing city are fleetingly revealed.
(02-07-1997) No programme.
(03-07-1997) Chinese Season - The Berbice Marriage Match Chinese Season (Jan Lo Shinebourne, read by Heather Emmanuel) Mrs Tsing Choy's son and Mrs Luck's daughter seem an unlikely match, but in the small Guianese-Chinese community, choice is a luxury.
(04-07-1997) Chinese Season - On A Tiled Courtyard I Pick Up The Years Chinese Season (Ah Sheng, translated by Eva Hung, read by Chowee Leow) Taiwan village life is seen through the eyes of a young boy.
(07-07-1997) Telling Molly (William Corlett, read by Fine Time Fontayne) Molly forgets but never ceases to remember. Can Anthony break this circle of memories to tell his mother the news that cannot wait?
(08-07-1997) A Safe Pair Of Hands (John F McNamara, read by Kerry Shale) In the office of the Middleville Times, editor Chips O'Schleigel is blurring fact and fiction, with dangerous consequences. A young reporter provides his final plot twist.
(09-07-1997) The Last Word (Anne Biggar, read by Una McLean) When born-again dissident Tam starts to attend funerals as a recreational pastime, his long-suffering wife Bridget knows he is planning some new form of protest.
(10-07-1997) Virtual Reality (Dorothy Schwarz, read by Sion Probert) Every summer, at Honeybeare Hall, tourists entered the Time Tunnel and travelled back centuries, for one weekend. But this year, they get stuck in 1597.
(11-07-1997) India Season - The Lost Child (Mulk Raj Anand, read by Amerjit Deu) A story about a young child who gets lost at a funfair.
(14 to 18-07-1997) The French Collection
1: Augustine De Villeblanche (The Marquis de Sade, trans Edward Marielle, read by Charles Dance) The tale of a suitor who goes to extraordinary lengths to win the woman of his dreams begins a week of five classic French short stories.
2: The Boy Spy (Alphonse Daudet, read by Anton Lesser) It is the winter of 1870 and Paris is under siege during the Franco-Prussian war. A childish bit of fun turns into tragedy when the story's young hero unwittingly acts as a spy for the Prussians.
3: The Accursed House (Emile Gaboriau, read by Alistair McGowan) The tenants of the Rue de la Victoire in Paris grow increasingly worried when their landlord mysteriously lowers their rent. What is the reason behind this astonishing act of generosity?
4: Morning Glories (Colette, trans Matthew Ward, read by Greta Scacchi) Valentine's lover prefers her to be adorned and made-up rather than naked and natural, leading to some frank observations from Colette on a woman's fixation with personal appearance.
5: On Horseback (Guy de Maupassant, trans Mary Balairdie Green, read by Simon Russell Beale) Hector de Gribelin belongs to a dying breed of aristocrat who still thinks that appearance counts for everything. He gets his comeuppance when he takes his family for a ride in the country.
(21-07-1997) Father & Son (Frank O'Connor, read by Ian McElhinney) A young man begins to understand the virtues of tenderness.
(22-07-1997) The Body (Rachel Bentham, read by Hannah Gordon) Anna is making a body. It is going to be huge, so where will she find enough cloth in war time?
(23-07-1997) One Wednesday Afternoon (Stan Barstow, unknown reader) A man's existence is shaken to the core when he is called out of work because his wife has suffered a nasty accident.
(24-07-1997) The Contraption (Rhys Davis, read by Helen Griffin) In the almshouses, plans for a modern lavatory were unwelcome. The ladies liked their old one - cosy and familiar, with the seat tacked over with rabbit fur.
(25-07-1997) India Season - The Playing Fields Of Simla (Ruskin Bond, read by Art Malik) The fourth of five short stories commissioned to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of independence and partition of India. A poignant autobiographical story about two schoolfriends separated by the war of partition in 1947.
(28-07-1997) The Deceivers (wri/read by Ludovic Kennedy) How flattering for a television presenter to go unrecognised, yet still be desirable.
(29-07-1997) Life In A Cracked Cup (Ursula de Brun, read by Mario Rosenstock) Joe has become a thinking man and comes to some uneasy conclusions about his family.
(30-07-1997) Miss Right (Caroline Upcher) When a chauffeur meets the girl of his dreams, he is driven to distraction - but will it all end in tears?
(31-07-1997) The House Next Door (Ros Muldowney, read by Hilary Neville) When old Mr Thomas expires in a Greek taverna, his next-door neighbour believes he is the victim of a 15th-century curse.
(01-08-1997) Journeys (Shashi Deshpande, read by Shelley King) A specially commissioned story set during the war of partition.
(04-08-1997) Nan MacDonald's Gamble (Hugh McMillan, read by Mary Riggans) Things look bleak when Nan MacDonald's husband succumbs to Alzheimer's, but when he simultaneously develops a gift for prophecy, she attempts to exploit the situation to their mutual advantage...
(05-08-1997) The Line Judge (wri/read by David Benedictus) William Skeat is a Wimbledon official whose keen eyes sometimes drift from the lines to the legs of Ms Branka Svavic.
(06-08-1997) Dying To Tell You (Tony Warren, read by Jean Alexander) Ida and her daughter Jean visit the ailing Pops in hospital. He has taken a turn for the worse, leading Ida to make a confession she has been dying to tell.
(07-08-1997) My Polish Teacher's Tie (Helen Dunmore, read by Patricia Brake) Carla, a school dinner lady, corresponds with Stefan, a Polish teacher, and all is well until it is time for Stefan's visit.
(08-08-1997) Brief Encounter (Herbert Williams, unknown reader) `This bloke from the paper starts askin' me a lorra questions. An' I tells him everything. I'm not kiddin'. Everything.'
(11-08-1997) Doing God's Work (Sadat Hasan Manto, read by Nizwar Karanj) A trader from India decides to go to Pakistan at the time of partition to make a fast buck, but he realises he needs to come up with something quite extraordinary to achieve his goals.
(12-08-1997) A Visitor From Pakistan (Ramlal, read by Shaheen Khan) Saraswati believes she has been widowed as a result of the terrible events of partition. She marries again, but seven years later, when a visitor from Pakistan knocks on her door, she is faced with a situation that she never believed was possible.
(13-08-1997) The Indian Lauren Bacall (Leila Keys, read by Sudha Bhuchar) A Hindu girl and a Muslim girl become room-mates at the start of medical college and find that their friendship deepens with time. However, when the dawn of partition breaks and Laurie is forced to leave India for a newly-formed Pakistan, her Hindu friend Nina cannot understand her coldness.
(14-08-1997) A New Life (Serrill Headley, read by Simon Nagra) When Shahzada takes study leave in a peaceful village near the border of what will become Pakistan and India, he embarks on a journey that he will never forget.
(15-08-1997) Getting Even (S H Vatsayan/Ajneya, read by Saeed Jaffrey) An old Sikh refugee finds he has nowhere to go after his village has been ravaged by partition. He makes a railway compartment into his home, and safely escorts lone passengers to their destinations.
(18 to 22-08-1997) An Actor's Tale (wri/read by Steven Berkoff) A week of Berkoff's short stories.
1: Agent - Harry has entrusted his career and his life to his agent, who happens to be ignoring his calls.
2: Director - Harry is a talented actor who performs well at audition - maybe too well.
3: Big Fish - Harry gets a small part in a play. If he is to survive in the business, he has to make his performance memorable.
4: Resting - Harry's acting work is unreliable, but he has found an amusing way of killing time.
5: Summer Season - Harry reflects on the unique magic that was the summer season in Repertory Theatre.
(25 to 29-08-1997) On The Fringe - A week of comic stories recorded in front of an audience in the Pleasance Cabaret Bar at this year's Edinburgh Festival.
1: Torquil Bristow's New Dawn (Patricia Hannah, read by Vivienne Dixon) Acid-dripping gossip on the disastrous wedding of a fashionable Scottish artist.
2: At Home With The Van De Bergs (wri/read by Johnny Meres) The surreal tale of a Belgian family who suddenly discover they possess extraordinary talents.
3: A Small Bite (Beatrice Colin, read by Hilary Neville) Frantic journalists develop a taste for blood at a Paris fashion event.
4: The Idiom Of Love (James Murphy, read by Jonathan Watson) Rivalry in love between a Glaswegian wimp and the seducer from hell.
5: Cameron Spooner's Ultimate Drapery (Iain Grant, read by Michael Mackenzie) A Scottish entertainer channels his love of bureaucracy into popular song.
(01-09-1997) A Pain In The Neck (wri/read by Tracey Lloyd) `Marooned on the sofa, Alison looked enviously around the room. The party was impermeably French.'
(02-09-1997) Ways (Edna O'Brien, unknown reader) Will Irish poet Nell find a way out of her loneliness whilst staying with her new friend in Vermont?
(03-09-1997) My Son (Jane Rawlinson, read by Jenny Agutter) She had marched for every noble cause, then she held the abandoned baby and really became involved.
(04-09-1997) Clean & Bright (Mat Coward, read by Chris Harris) Plunging handfuls of air into a sink and trying to wash them seems only natural to granny. But her grandson does not understand it - until after her death.
(05-09-1997) The Larva Tree (Janice Fox, read by Stephen Thorne) An elderly man is comfortable in his new home until the local council decides that his house needs urgent improvement.
(08-09-1997) Getting A Life (Alex Shearer, read by Brian Parr) When a person sees their life going the other way, on the back of a lorry, what can they do?
(09-09-1997) Mountain Air (Sian James, read by Sharon Morgan) A family outing to the mountains almost goes awry.
(10-09-1997) Covered Bridge & Autumn Splendour (wri/read by Christopher Hope) A musical love story set in London's Maida Vale.
(11-09-1997) Hurst Of Hurstcote (E Nesbit, read by Linus Roache) In this Gothic horror story, John Hurst's murky past comes back to haunt him when his wife dies unexpectedly from marsh fever.
(12-09-1997) Morrisey (Rob Gittins, read by Suzanne Packer) A detective sergeant from Canton nick, Cardiff, tells her story.
(15-09-1997) Voodoo Cantata (Gail Hughes, read by Carolyn Jones) After years of seeing herself as a wronged woman, Cleo decides it is time for revenge.
(16-09-1997) Discovering Brendan (Ita Daly, read by Marie Jones) Alice, recently widowed, realises that she never really knew the husband to whom she had been happily married for forty years.
(17-09-1997) Marriage (Evelyn Lau, read by Barbara Barnes) A teenage girl is obsessed with her older lover and his wife.
(18-09-1997) Tete-a-Tete (Jean Wrist, read by Gwen Taylor) Mother was not one to gossip. `Never trust women who want to get too friendly with you,' she would say, and she stuck rigidly to this until the day she agreed to meet Mrs Pring in town for tea.
(19-09-1997) Patience (Frances Galleymore, read by Ann Beach) Mr Andrew considered his midweek play time to be well deserved, until his guilt overwhelmed him and his wife's patience ran out.
(22-09-1997) Labels (Louis de Bernieres, read by Kerry Shale) An obsessive collector of cat food labels triumphs over his affliction.
(23-09-1997) Tea In The Heather (Kate Roberts, translated by Wyn Griffith) Eight-year-olds Begw and Mair are off on an adventure - a picnic tea on the mountainside by themselves. Then local wild child Winni decides to tag along. Read by Caryl Parry Jones.
(24-09-1997) Dying For Love (Carol Shields, read by Buffy Davies) Three very different women think about life - and death - after rejection.
(25-09-1997) The World Covered In Gold (Philip Corker, read by Paul McGann) `You could cover the world in gold. Wrap up that glorious blue tragedy in yellow foil and hang it from a Christmas tree.'
(26-09-1997) The Stranger (Molly McCloskey, read by Jacquie Galbraith) When Julia realises that her husband has stumbled into an affair, she is forced to see him in a fresh light.
(29-09-1997) My Son (Jane Rawlinson, read by Jenny Agutter) She had marched for every noble cause, then she held the abandoned baby and really became involved.
(30-09-1997) Blood & Water (Eilis Ni Dhuibhne, read by Stella McCusker) A sophisticated and intellectual woman begins to have feelings of guilt and embarrassment about neglecting her mentally retarded aunt.
(01-10-1997) Bald Patch (Daniel Davies, read by David Bannerman) 'Simon looked at the man's head. Around his crown, the man's short sandy hair petered out into nothing more than a furry covering. Surely he didn't have a bald patch like that?'
(02-10-1997) Chewing It Over (Alison White, read by Carolyn Backhouse) `It seems that all my life I have pleased other people, which is why I stopped living by the rules.'
(03-10-1997) My Father (Damon Runyon, read by Kerry Shale) `I can picture in my mind's eye his small but hardy frame encased in the fringes fashionable at that day, cleaving a path towards the setting sun as he furrowed the pine bars of the Red Light and the Pink Dog Cafes with his hard-earned dollars.'
(06-10-1997) The Stack (Rose Tremain, read by Jim Norton) John McCreedy is in a loveless marriage and living far from his Irish home. What will he do on his birthday?
(07-10-1997) Tracey Kicks (Mike Jenkins, read by Maria Pride) Last season it seemed as if Tracey's dreams had come true when she was picked for Southampton's junior football squad. Then they discovered she was a girl. Will she now get a game with her local team in Cwmtaff?
(08-10-1997) Now & Forever (Lana Citron, read by Anna Livia Ryan) A Dublin girl harbours an unrequited love for an egotistical young poet.
(09-10-1997) Paivi (Helen Dunmore, read by Saskia Reeves) Paivi - young, beautiful and very pregnant - feels frightened and lonely in Finland, where the winter nights last for ever.
(10-10-1997; Rpt) Overcoat (Rhidian Brook, read by Richard Nichols) Rod believes that buying a new coat will improve not only his image but also his prospects at work.
(13-10-1997) The Right Spot (Patrick Skene Catling, read by David Kelly) Kevin and Brigitta decide to leave the United States and retire to Ireland, but things do not turn out quite as they had planned.
(14-10-1997) Blue Rabbit (David Self, read by Jo Brand) Arnos Grove writes children's books. His editor wants to cancel his contract because the books are just not PC. Blue rabbit comes to the rescue!
(15-10-1997) Mother Of The Bride (Angela Huth, read by Angela Barlow) Mrs Hetherington had decided against the tranquillisers. After all, the role of mother of the bride is one that calls for a clear head, as well as impeccable dress sense and as much affection as one can muster for one's new son-in-law.
(16-10-1997) Every Word In The Book (Gee Williams, read by Kathryn Dimery) Mr Al Ghamdi receives a Christmas card of Cader Idris deep in snow, yet Wales is having its warmest winter on record. Will he see snow before he returns to Saudi Arabia?
(17-10-1997; Rpt) The Falkirk Malteser (Douglas Young, read by Paul Birchard) Following the return to Scotland of the Stone of Destiny, and after the recent vote for devolution, private eye Mort Drexler investigates the disappearance of a less familiar symbol of Scottish pride - the mysterious Falkirk Malteser.
(20-10-1997) Faith's Pilgrimage (Lawrence Scott, read by Vivienne Rochester) A Caribbean tale of the struggle between propriety and independence.
(21-10-1997) Poppy Seed & Sesame Rings (Elizabeth Jolley, read by Kerry Fox) A family of German immigrants in Australia finds it hard to settle. Mother longs for the bread of her homeland; her daughter dreams of belonging to the new country.
(22-10-1997) Daddy's Girl (Mary Flanagan, read by Buffy Davis) She would test her father's endurance with every sort of boyfriend imaginable. Then there was Miles...
(23-10-1997) Rose (Nan Woodhouse, read by Eleanor Bron) May 1835. A young girl's chance encounter with a poet changes her life for ever.
(24-10-1997; Rpt) The Lady In The Desert (Sylvia Brownrigg, read by Adjoa Andoh) `I've heard about these starvation diets you can go on. I thought it sounded like a good idea. So I decided to move to the desert. No temptations, right? Just sand and sky.'
(27-10-1997) A New Beginning (Richard Madelin, read by Philip Voss) Birthdays can be a difficult time. A darkly comic tale of one man's 70th.
(28-10-1997) The Benefits Of The Doubts (wri/read by Mike Harding) Can Ron be sure he has made the right decision when the fate of a young houseboy in Pakistan depends on him?
(29-10-1997; Rpt) Slow Release (David Self, read by Michael Tudor Barnes) A personal tragedy leads a successful entrepreneur to reflect on past actions.
(30-10-1997; Rpt) Backstroke (Ruth Thomas, read by Sarah Collier) Muriel is caught by a mixture of irritation and guilt when she takes her overweight mother to a swimming session for the over-50s.
(31-10-1997) The Candle In The Skull (Basil Copper, read by Gerard McDermott) Martin's attempt to dispose of his unwanted wife does not go according to plan - but his daughter gets a sinister treat for Hallowe'en.
(03-11-1997) The Hunt (Carol Ann Frazer, read by Annette Crosbie) When young Hugh comes to stay for the weekend, he brings a whole new meaning to the fox-hunting experience.
(04-11-1997) Swing Doors (Marie Hannigan, read by Marcella Riordan) Having failed to persuade her father to let her join the crew of his fishing boat, Valerie goes to the next village, hoping to find employment with another skipper. But equal opportunity proves to be a tricky prize in the area...
(05-11-1997) Man Of His Times (Frank White, read by Stephen Thorne) A young man spends a quiet weekend with his friends and family before leaving to join his ship and fight in the war.
(06-11-1997) The Pig's Squeal (John E Stuckey, read by Robert Harper) Sam is haunted by the brutal childhood memory of a pig being slaughtered and the squeal given to him captured in a bottle...
(07-11-1997) On The Death Of Ken Saro-Wiwa (Ken Saro-Wiwa, read by Ben Onwukwe) I decided to give up the ghost the moment I was brought into the interrogation room. I had been advised to do so by the ghost himself.
(10-11-1997) A March In Time (Brian Glanville, read by William Dufris) Toscanini is fiercely opposed to Fascism and refuses to conduct `Giovinezza'. But for how long can the great conductor continue to outwit Mussolini?
(11-11-1997) The Land Girl (Diana Gardner, read by Eve Matheson) `Something stirs down in the countryside when a smart young woman helps out on the farm.'
(12-11-1997) Inner Balance (Kate Atkinson, read by Siobhan Redmond) June just has to reach her optimal inner balance, rid herself of all the nasty bits, and she will be the perfect mother and the perfect lover.
(13-11-1997) Windfall (Dorothy K Haynes, read by Crawford Logan) A young woman living in a remote house in the country finds a peculiar-looking, bowler-hatted visitor on her doorstep. `Good afternoon,' he says, `I wonder if you have any old gold to sell...?'
(14-11-1997) Remembrance Day (Katie Campbell, read by Barbara Barnes) A woman returning home to Canada is disturbed by strange sounds from the flat next door.
(17-11-1997) Moonbeams & Aspirin (Kevin Canty, read by Stuart Milligan) Lockhart and Margaret are heading for divorce. But not before they have taken a holiday in Florida.
(18-11-1997) Handel's Trumpeter (Ifor Thomas, read by Danny Grehan) Hywel discovers a love of music and sound when he visits his grandfather. So how will a tuning fork help him overcome his fear of dogs?
(19-11-1997) The Winner (Barbara Kimenye, read by Anthony Ofoegbu) After a substantial win on the pools, a Ugandan villager struggles to come to terms with his sudden popularity.
(20-11-1997) Child Of Clay (Bernie Crosthwaite, read by Josie Lawrence) A schoolgirl makes a powerful sculpture which she is compelled to destroy. She starts again.
(21-11-1997; Rpt) Forensic Evidence (Martyn Bedford, read by Denys Hawthorne) A forensic scientist battles with his private distress while removing all the evidence from the scene of a domestic crime.
(24-11-1997) From The Slips (wri/read by David Benedictus) A new story about a cricketer who decides to abandon the game and change his life.
(25-11-1997) Father & Son (W A Harbinson, read by Oliver Maguire) A young boy must visit his mother's grave for the first time.
(26-11-1997) Submersion (Elizabeth Buchan, read by Patience Tomlinson) Mimi is drowning within her demanding family. What can she do to keep her head above water?
(27-11-1997) Personal Growth (Gill McEvoy, read by Sunny Ormonde) Is Doreen's therapist a Dr-Jekyll-and-Mr-Hyde? Doreen begins to wonder when she visits her out of hours.
(28-11-1997; Rpt) Her First Ball (Katherine Mansfield, read by Sara Coward) Leila's mind is in a whirl at the prospect of her first formal ball. But will her partners live up to expectations?
(01-12-1997) Music From The Past (David T K Wong, read by Dan Maxwell) Rachel wanted to migrate to Israel. Kung had his sights on Taiwan. A story about two people separated by race, religion and ambition.
(02-12-1997; Rpt) Will You Marry Me? (Richard Brown, read by Ioan Meredith) `It's commitment, it's so terminal. How do I know that the moment I say ``yes'', I won't walk round the next corner and straight into someone even prettier, even brighter, even funnier? How?'
(03-12-1997) Ash On Guavas (wri/read by Lawrence Scott) A new story about a Caribbean island threatened by a volcanic eruption.
(04-12-1997; Rpt) One Thousand Dollars A Word (Lawrence Block, read by Bob Sherman. A writer discovers a particularly lucrative side to crime writing.
(05-12-1997; Rpt) The Execution (Daphne Glazer, read by Patricia Hodge) It is the day of the hatchet, and Sue Spalding has been preparing herself for it. He has to go, and she is the one to do it. But why is it so excruciatingly difficult this time?
(08-12-1997) Outside The House (Sue Gee, read by Eve Karpf) A woman struggling with intense grief prepares herself for the onslaught of Christmas cheer.
(09-12-1997) Big For Wales (Rhidian Brook, read by Sion Probert) American couple Freddy and Ella pay a visit to Wales which highlights their opposing outlooks on life.
(10-12-1997) Frozen Words (Elizabeth Buchan, read by Mark Bonnar) A young man's trust of a mountain turns to tragedy when he takes the woman he loves to see it.
(11-12-1997) Conversations With Unicorns (Peter Carey, read by Jonathan Keeble) `I ask them if the death of a unicorn is not always accompanied by a loud bang.' The anguish of a young man who finds that only by killing can he save what he desperately wants to protect.
(12-12-1997; Rpt) Magic (Gee Williams, read by Richard Elfyn) Childhood memories of an unexpected Christmas meal.
(15-12-1997) On The Shingle (Candia McWilliam, read by Tracy Wiles)
(16-12-1997) The Innocent (Graham Greene, read by Cornelius Garrett) `It was a mistake to take Lola there. I knew it the moment we alighted from the train at the small country station.' A journey back to a boyhood home arouses troubling memories.
(17-12-1997) A Christmas Card To One & All (Penelope Lively, read by Brigit Forsyth) Lizzie, doting mother and loving wife - or living nightmare and busybody extraordinaire - sends festive greetings to one and all.
(18-12-1997) The Story Of The Goblins Who Stole A Sexton (Charles Dickens, read by Clive Francis) Gabriel Grubb, a surly grave-digger, is taken from the churchyard by goblins who want to teach him some valuable lessons about Christmas cheer.
(19-12-1997) A Festive Vocation (Eddie McVeigh, read by B J Hogg) Terry's job as a temporary Santa in a posh department store, giving gifts to children who already have too much, is making him disgusted with Christmas - until...
(22-12-1997) The Nightingale & The Rose (Oscar Wilde, read by John Moffatt) With her exquisite song, a little bird gives up her own heart's blood in the hope that a young man will find true love.
(23-12-1997) The Happy Prince (Oscar Wilde, read by John Moffatt) A beautiful statue and a homeless swallow give everything of themselves for the happiness of others.
(24-12-1997) No programme.
(25-12-1997) The Selfish Giant (Oscar Wilde, read by John Moffatt) When a monstrous giant shows gentle kindness, he is rewarded by the greatest love of all. (NB: Transmitted at 8:45pm.)
(26-12-1997) The Remarkable Rocket (Oscar Wilde, read by John Moffatt) A very arrogant firework gets his comeuppance in a most undignified fashion.
(29-12-1997; Rpt) What The Dickens? (Iain Patterson, read by Stephen Thorne) A revised version of `A Christmas Carol' has Ebenezer Scrooge struggling to spread Christmas cheer in Canary Wharf.
(30-12-1997; Rpt) The Gift Of The Magi (O Henry, read by Bob Sherman) A classic Christmas tale of love and sacrifice by the American storyteller.
All series/one-off pieces transmitted between 6pm and midnight...
(25-05 to 08-06-1997) Spirit Of The Place - A series of three stories which evoke the character and atmosphere of a place through language and sound, read by their authors. (Sun 11:15pm; 30m)
2: The Music Of Living Landscapes (Wilson Harris) An imaginary journey through the interiors of London and Guyana, finding ways to combine Macusi legend with the technology of the West.
3: The Death Of Miss Agatha Peakes (Louis De Bernieres) A tale set in the Surrey village in which he grew up feeling fascinated with one of the elderly villagers.
(12-05 to 16-06-1997) Firefly Summer (Maeve Binchy, dram Jane Cassidy) Six-part series with David Soul as Patrick O'Neill, the American who arrives with big plans for the village of Mountfern, until things turn sour following an accident on the site of his new hotel. With Anna Healy, Lorcan Cranitch, Susan Slot and Dan Gordon. Directed by Pam Brighton. (Mon 11:30pm; 30m)
4: No synopsis.
5: After 18 months in New York, Rachel Fine has been summoned back to Ireland by Patrick O'Neill to oversee the decoration of his new hotel.
6: Patrick has almost realised his dream. The opening of his new hotel is in sight, but Kate Ryan's compensation case is looming and Kerry's gambling has further estranged father and son.
(29-04 to 03-06-1997; Rpt) Minor Adjustment (Andy & Eric Merriman) Peter Davison and Samantha Bond star in the final part of a comedy about a family with a young daughter who has Down's syndrome. (NB: Repeat from 18-07 to 22-08-1996.) (Tues 6:30pm; 30m)
6: Foetal Attraction - Sarah wants a third child. Richard suggests a holiday might be more fun. Meanwhile Uncle Chuckles has been engaged for Amy's birthday party.
(04-06 to 09-07-1997) The Mahaffys (Karl MacDermott) Pauline McLynn stars in this idiosyncratic, six-part comedy set in small-town Ireland. With Karl MacDermott, Jonathan White, Conor Lambert, Mario Rosenstock and Farrell Fleming. (Wed 11:15pm; 15m)
1: Life at the Mahaffy household is turned upside down when cold-hearted businessman Gus Finch rolls into Tubberbiggle. Finch is the owner of the bus company where Jack works and is staying at Jack and Cora's B&B while he is in town. Unfortunately, Jack does not realise who Finch is until he insults him and is subsequently fired.
2: Cora is having a difficult time trying to manage the B&B and her trouser shortening business, while also helping Kieron with his studies and Ena with her allergy problems. Jack, meanwhile, joins Tubberbiggle's oldest secret society in the hope of wangling a job for unemployed Malachy.
3: Jack is off work after a minor car crash and has started gambling. Cora is exasperated and orders him to seek help from Father Des, while she goes away for a few days with Ena.
4: Jack is having a mid-life crisis and becomes attracted to new barmaid Breege, while Cora is at home having to cope with a visit from cantankerous Uncle Timmy.
5: Cora is busy trying to organise Tubberbiggle's first ever arts festival, with absolutely no help from Jack.
6: Jack is knee-deep in shenanigans again, and it is left to Cora to save the day.
(04-06 to 09-07-1997) Life, Death & Sex With Mike & Sue (Bill Dare) A five-part comedy series starring Robert Duncan and Julia Hills as Radio 4's antidote to Anne and Nick. With Roger Blake, Mark Kilmurry, Sally Phillips and Dan Strauss. (Wed 11:30pm; 30m) (NB: Not transmitted 18-06-1997.)
1: No synopsis.
2: Mike and Sue look at sickness, friendship and sick friends.
3: Over half the letters to Mike and Sue are about crime. The rest are stolen in the post.
4: Mike highlights the plight of the homeless, in order to raise money for a new squash court.
5: In a recent survey, sex was voted Britain's favourite activity - after eating, sleeping, ironing and emptying the bin.
(01-05 to 05-06-1997) The House Of The Spirit Levels (Nick Revell) A six-part comedy saga. With David Swift as Obadiah, Maggie Steed as Alice, Alison Steadman as Jane, Claire Skinner as Emily and Nick Revell as Tony. (Thur 6:30pm; 30m)
6: Black sheep Tony Hardstaff discovers the pleasures of tequila while on a plane bound for Venezuela. But can he escape the clutches of his family life once and for all?
(05 to 26-06-1997) Fun-Filled Days Of Harriet Knight (Carol Noble) A new four-part comedy series. With Emma Chambers, Jane Whittenshaw, Tom Watt and Rebecca Michael. Director Marion Nancarrow. (Thur 11:00pm; 30m)
1: Cruella's Big Moment - 1975: Harriet Knight wants to be an archaeologist when she grows up because it is the longest word she knows. In the meantime, she has to compete with her evil sister, Cruella.
2: The Great Big Scrape - Harriet meets a new relation and discovers how deliciously enticing it is to be bad.
3: The Slob & The Snob - The art of ancient Egyptians comes to Hackney.
4: Bellies & Bums - Harriet goes to the supermarket to try to get Brian a new brother or sister.
(10-06 to 15-07-1997; Rpt) People Like Us (John Morton) Another chance to hear the six-part comedy series in which hapless broadcaster Roy Mallard (Chris Langham) sets out to give an impression of the day-to-day business of ordinary occupations. (Tues 6:30pm; 30m)
1: The Managing Director - Mallard discovers that rotating a diagram can make a `top-down' model of management look `bottom-up'. With Bill Paterson, Melanie Hudson, Roger Sloman, Kim Wall, Benedict Sandiford and Alice Arnold.
2: The Artist - Isabelle is a sculptress and works in three dimensions. But Leila is a painter working in two dimensions which is obviously a lot more... cramped. With Harriet Walter, Melanie Hudson, Dominic Letts, Kim Wall and Robert Harley.
3: The Ski Courier - Hapless broadcaster Roy Mallard gets to grips with what it is really like to be a ski rep. With Robert Harley, Jonathan Kydd, Sally Phillips, Kay Stonham and Caroline Strong. Robert Harley and Jonathan Kydd.
4: The Estate Agent - Roy gets to grips with what it's really like to be an estate agent, but is momentarily sidetracked when he takes more than a professional interest in one of his interviewees. With Chris Langham as Roy Mallard, and Sally Phillips.
5: The Policeman - Mallard turns his incisive gaze on what it is really like to be one of today's police officers.
6: The Hotel Manager - Mallard goes behind the scenes in a hotel with another of his incisive reports.
(12-06 to 10-07-1997) Taking It Up The Octave (Fintan Coyle & Tom Miles) A new five-part comedy. With Godfrey James, Simon Butteriss, Andrew Branch, Benjamin Davies and Caz Weller. Chorus Alison Porter, Susan Jelley, Henrik Wager and Ian Bloomfield. (Thur 6:30pm; 30m)
1: Opera Sunderland has a tradition of performing a new work every season. However, when managing director Dwight Gaggenheim opts for `West Side Story' over an innovative gay opera, the tempers and egos of some local opera buffs come bubbling to the surface.
2: Opera Sunderland's production of `Carmen' continues apace. However, blackmail, nodules on the throat and bargain-basement cattle leave the cast rather preoccupied.
3: Funding at Opera Sunderland is at crisis point. A hard choice has to be made: should the council's limited cash be spent on opera or a state-of-the-art, chemical-flush public convenience? All the signs suggest the town's collective call of nature promises to win hands down.
4: Staging opera is often an exhausting and unpopular business. Keyboard Ken collapses and is rushed to hospital, while Natasha, Opera Sunderland's prima donna, tours pubs, clubs and local radio stations trying to drum up trade.
5: The first night of Carmen is nigh. The cast's tensions are mounting - Natasha resorts to verbal abuse, James finds succour in emotional flooding techniques and Gareth seeks solace in whisky.
(23-06 to 28-07-1997) Pet Sematary (Stephen King, dram Gregory Evans) With John Sharian, Briony Glassco and Lee Montague. (Mon 11:30pm; 30m)
1: Dr Louis Creed has everything: a loving wife and family and a successful career as head medic on a university campus in the pretty, tranquil town of Ludlow. But not far from the Creeds' beautiful new home lie ancient Indian burial grounds - which have an altogether less benign charm.
2: The lure of the ancient Micmac burial ground exerts its evil influence on Louis and Jud, who witness the sinister powers for themselves.
3: Louis and his family continue to flourish but Norma's health begins to fail.
4: The most shattering of tragedies strikes the Creed family.
5: Heedless of Jud's warnings, Louis takes Gage's body to the Micmac burial ground and brings him back to life.
6: Louis Creed's attempts to bring his dead son back to life spark a chain of events more terrifying than even Jud could have imagined.
(03 to 31-07-1997) The Mark Of Zorro (S J Ashford) An epic adventure in five parts. With Mark Arden, Louise Lombard and Glyn Houston. (Thur 11:00pm; 30m)
1: Night Of The Fox - In the earthquake-ravaged town of Los Angeles, the military comb the countryside for the infamous outlaw Zorro. Lolita is appalled at he suffering of the poor.
2: Deadly Reckonings - Trapped in the church with soldiers at the door, Zorro throws himself on the mercy of Lolita.
3: The Avenging Blade - While saving Conchita from the lecherous governor, Zorro is surrounded. Is there no escape for our hero?
4: The Place Of Skulls - Father Felipe is to be flogged. Will Zorro take the bait and try to save his mentor? Will Lolita ever realise who Zorro really is?
5: The Gathering Storm - Zorro comes face to face with the evil governor.
(16-07 to 06-08-1997) Dry Slopes (Nick Ball) Comedy series written by and starring Nick Ball, with Louisa Rix as Mum.(Wed 11:00pm; 30m)
1: Emma - Does the fact that Emma is married, has a son and is moving to Mauritius mean that she is no longer interested in Angus, or is she just playing hard to get? It would be a lot easier to find out if he could talk to her instead of her answering machine.
2: Tick Tock - Angus is approaching 30 and has not achieved any of his ambitions. Not even the one about moving to Lowestoft. What terrible end will be revealed by the Ghost of Brithdays Yet to Come? And even more worrying, has his mother really forgotten to buy him a present?
3: The Domino Effect - Everybody Angus knows seems to be in a relationship these days. He looks back to a time when all his friends were confirmed bachelors - the golden days of form 3B.
4: The Invisible Man'. The last of a four-part comedy series written by and starring Nick Ball, with Louisa Rix as Mum. Nobody seems to pay Angus much attention these days. He tries to tell his problems to a psychiatrist, but he cannot seem to make himself heard over the cricket commentary.
(17-07 to 21-08-1997) Life, Death & Sex With Mike & Sue (Bill Dare) A six-part comedy series starring Robert Duncan and Jan Ravens as Radio 4's antidote to Anne and Nick. (Thur 6:30pm; 30m)
1: Mike and Sue ponder the future and grapple with relationships.
2: This week, Mike and Sue discuss work and travel, and meet some very sad people in a `Missing Persons' item.
3: Mike and Sue demonstrate how to embarrass your children in public.
4: This week, Mike and Sue invite a stressed bomb-disposal expert to `hug his fear'.
5: No synopsis.
6: No synopsis.
(22-07 to 12-08-1997) Wonderland Girls (Marianne Carey) Four-part comedy lifts the lid on the life assurance business. With Fiona Bell, Wendy Seager and Tom Smith. Directed by Patrick Rayner. (Tues 6:30pm; 30m)
1: Striking It Lucky - No synopsis.
2: Smouldering Passions - Brian has a bit too much to drink.
3: The Icing on the Cake - Maxine steps out on the rocky road of love.
4: A Girl's Best Friend - The marketing department learns the art of damage limitation.
(20-07 to 10-09-1997) Reading Aloud: Work - A series of six readings that explore the joys and woes of earning a daily crust. (Wed 8:05pm; 30m)
1: Down & Out In Paris & London (George Orwell, read by Paul McGann) Washing up at Hotel X takes the aspiring writer out of the poverty trap in 1930s Paris.
2: Biting The Dust - The Joys Of Housework (Margaret Horsfield, read by Brenda Blethyn) Flapper or scrubber - which kind of cleaner are you?
3: Gregory Gladwell - Blacksmith (Ronald Blythe, read by David Horovitch) An extract from `Akenfield' which describes a hot, emotionally taxing life at the forge.
4: The Job (Sinclair Lewis, read by Barbara Barnes) Una embarks on office life in 1930s New York.
5: Microserfs (Douglas Coupland, read by William Hope) Toiling away in computerland - how to make sense of it all?
6: In Praise Of Idleness (Bertrand Russell, read by Hugh Dickson) A final reflection on the world of work for all who have ever thought, `There must be more to life than this'.
(04-08 to 08-09-1997) Hearts & Lives Of Men (wri/narr Fay Weldon) A five-part series set in a Swinging Sixties London where love triumphs over lust, and goodwill over satanic forces. With Jane Slavin, Jenny Funnell, Indie Davies, Catharine Morris and Charles Simpson. Director Shaun MacLoughlin. (NB: The final episode was transmitted on either 01-09 or 08-09, as the synopsis was used both weeks - maybe as a consequence of Diana's death.) (Mon 11:30pm; 30m)
1: Clifford, the whiz-kid of Leonardo's Art House, meets Helen, the artist's daughter. Nell is conceived in white-hot passion on their first night and born as sweet and good as any girl-child in a Dickens novel.
2: Angie, the evil and outrageous South African heiress, persuades Helen that if she wants to keep Clifford she will have to have a termination. However, Clifford hears of her plans in the nick of time.
3: When Helen and Clifford divorce, Helen gains custody of three-year-old Nell. Clifford decides to kidnap his daughter, but his plans go wrong and Nell goes missing.
4: Nell is presumed dead, but Helen never gives up hope that she is alive. Nell is actually living in a hippie commune in Herefordshire.
5: Helen and Nell are to be rewarded, while the outrageous Angie is to be punished.
(07 to 28-08-1997) The Leaves Of The Dead (Nick Fisher) With Imelda Staunton as the investigating detective, Julie Enfield. With Geoffrey Matthews, Ross Livingstone, Alex Lowe, Janet Maw and Colleen Prendergast. Directed by Richard Wortley. (Thur 11:00pm; 30m)
1: Proverbs & Punctures From Hell - In the first of a new four-part series, Julie meets academic eccentrics as she investigates an inexplicable killing at the British Library.
2: Stacks & Baps & Amulets - Julie begins to unravel the murder in the British Library when she learns of a second killing - a new `mummy' in the Egyptian rooms.
3: Welcome To The Nightmare - The murderer has claimed a third victim. Is it a ritual killing?
4: Pyramids In The Spider - Rendered unconsious, Julie has been injected with a deadly drug. Are Lawrence Evans and her father in a position to help?
(08 to 29-08-1997) Mammon (Will Buckley, Nick Hildred, Hugh Rycroft & David Spicer) Big business, politics and the media come in for a satirical mauling as `The Mammon Corporation' returns for a second, four-part series. With Julian Dutton, Daniel Strauss, Jonathan Coy, Jonathan Aris, Julian Dutton, Carla Mendonca, Sarah Parkinson, Daniel Strauss and Gary Waldhorn. (NB: Repeated 6:25pm Saturdays) (Fri 11:00pm; 30m)
1: When New Labour invite leading industrialists to advise the administration, the executives at Mammon set out to show that, although there has been a change of government, there has not been a change of power.
2: The executives at the Mammon Corporation decide to enter the sporting arena with the launch of the Mammon Sports Channel. But without the rights to any of the major sports, how will Mammon become the biggest player?
3: With crime figures and law and order becoming the chief concern of ABC1, the government decides that private companies might provide the solution. With this lucrative new market, the executives at Mammon set out to prove that crime really does pay.
4: The anti-smoking lobby is winning the argument and the corporation is worried that the profits of its cigarette subsidiary are going up in smoke. The executives decide to hit back by winning over the government and proving that smoking is the duty of every socially responsible citizen.
(09 to 30-08-1997) Quintessentially Flummoxed (Leonard Barras) 'The Wallsend Mixed Comb-and-Paper Band was a hotbed of sex. This, according to Herbert Mangle, the Wallsend poet, signified its only resemblance to real life.' (Sat 11:15pm; 15m)
1: Days Of Reflection' and Relatively Absolute.
2: Suffering Is Permanent and Vibrating In The Memory.
3: Only Stars Above You and After Me In Vain.
4: Such Love As Spirits Feel and Before & After The Flood.
(13 to 20-08-1997) The Cruiskeen Lawn (Flann O'Brien) Two programmes featuring characterisations and dramatisations based on the hilarious and horrifying mental gymnastics of the Irish novelist, columnist, wit and raconteur Flann O'Brien, aka Myles na Gopaleen. (Wed 11:30pm; 30m)
(19-08 to 23-09-1997) Rent (Lucy Flannery) The first of six episodes in the third series of a sitcom about the Reynolds household and their lodgers, with Barbara Flynn, Patrick Barlow and Linda Polan. (Tues 6:30pm; 30m)
1: No synopsis.
2: Maria needs a day out, so Paul has to look after the baby - but can he be trusted?
3: Paul has a very serious question to ask Ruby. And Maria is developing a big problem with gambling.
4: There is havoc in the Reynolds household as preparations for the baby's naming ceremony reach a climax.
5: Maria turns agony aunt, and it looks like Paul might be turning all grown-up and responsible.
6: It is time for Paul and Ruby to decide their future, which could spell the end of life as we know it chez Reynolds.
(28-08 to 18-09-1997) Control Group Six (wri/starring Richard Bean, Andrew Clifford, Clive Coleman & Colin Swash) A four-part comedy that is half sketch show and half thriller. With Geraldine Fitzgerald. (Thur 6:30pm; 30m)
1: President Frank is dead, leaving Control Group Six - the Company's experimental town - leaderless. The hero, Dr Heaven is looking for a job, can the Director of the Company help?
2: Can Heaven find a wife soon enough to satisfy a suspicious Bishop? And if he does, will she smell enough like his mother?
3: Heaven holds a peace conference. There can be only one conclusion - all-out war.
4: After reading a press release announcing his assassination, president Dr Heaven realises that life as a puppet dictator does not mean always getting one's own way.
(28-08-1997) Reading Aloud - Granada (Hans Christian Andersen, read by Hugh Dickson) Andersen's visit to the city in the 1860s brought out some stark contrasts - the gaiety of the street festivals and the strange menace of the Alhambra. (NB: A possible repeat transmitted whilst another Reading Aloud series was still playing.) (Thur 8:00pm; 20m)
(01-09-1997; Rpt) Better Than Sex (Sean O'Brien) Another chance to hear writer O'Brien celebrate the readily available sensual experience that gives him intense pleasure - Tyneside Turkish Baths. (NB: I think this repeat was a one-off.) (Mon 9:45pm; 15m)
(03-09 to 01-10-1997) On Baby Street (Julie Balloo & Jenny Eclair) A five-part comedy drama about three new mothers living in the same street. With Frances Barber, Claire Skinner and Tilly Vosburgh. (Wed 11:00pm; 30m)
1: The babies are now a month old, bald and incontinent, and a rather wicked Mother Nature watches over the lives of their parents - older first-time mum Geraldine, teenager Yvette and perfect, text-book couple Shona and Ian.
2: The babies are about four months old and in need of constant mopping. Their mothers are constantly weary, and an early night with a slice of chocolate cake is looking increasingly appealing.
3: It is Christmas and the babies are six months old. Geraldine picks out some clothes that have not got baby sick on the shoulder and returns to the world of part-time work. Meanwhile Shona is working overtime and leaving Ian to seek the company of the mother and toddler group.
4: The babies are nine months old. Will romance blossom for Geraldine and her new Canadian? Will Ian notice that Tonia is interested in him? Only Yvette seems to have her feet firmly on the ground - making adverts and leopardskin Babygros.
5: The babies are now a year old and their mothers are celebrating.
(25-09 to 16-10-1997) Fear On Four - Series 4 (NB: Much confusion here: 'Chimes' was originally listed for 04-09-1997, and is still referred to as the opener in the 02-10 listing, the rest of the series presumablydelayed by Diana's death? Also, an online listing refers to 'Net Suicide' as the 04-09 opener, for which I have no information.) (Thur 11:00pm; 30m)
1: Net Suicide (see note above).
2: Tapping (Colin Haydn Evans) A tapping noise has haunted Tom for thirty years. But Janey has a plan.
3: The Chimes Of Midnight (Nick Fisher) Five scary stories which begin (sic) with David Suchet starring as a theoretical physicist whose consuming passion leads him into a great deal of trouble.
4: Making Sacrifices (Unknown) Three young girls learn about the darker side of life in a blackly humorous view of fear and loathing in a girls' boarding school. With Caroline Strong, Sarah Rice and Alison Pettitt. Director Adrian Bean.
5: Tissue Memory (Judy Upton) Anna has a healthy new heart. But who was the donor? And how did she die? With Rachel Atkins and Kim Wall. Director David Blount.
(15-09 to 06-10-1997) Bertie & The Crime Of Passion (Peter Lovesey, dram Geoffrey M Matthews) An historical whodunnit. With Robert Lang and Jane Lapotaire. Director Matthew Walters. (Mon 11:30pm; 30m)
1: Bertie, the Prince of Wales, is hot on the trail of the murderer at the Moulin Rouge.
2: Bertie the Prince of Wales is bewildered by the lack of a motive for the Moulin Rouge murder.
3: Bertie seems as far away as ever from solving the murder at the Moulin Rouge.
4: No synopsis.
(17 to 25-09-1997) Singular Women (Stewart Permutt) Four different women's bittersweet views of the world. (NB: Repeated in late December.) (Wed/Thurs 8:45pm; 15m)
1: Bea - June Brown plays the long-suffering companion of a minor comic, whose unfortunate demise puts her happily into the limelight.
2: Frances - Celia Imrie plays a shy Exeter schoolteacher who has achieved a notoriety she would rather be without.
3: Stella - Miriam Margolyes plays the proud manageress of an unchanging chocolate shop in a changing world.
4: Dora - Lesley Joseph recreates her stage role as a `person of restricted growth' whose performances are under threat.
(08-10 to 12-11-1997) The Shuttleworths (wri/performed by Graham Fellows.) After `500 Bus Stops' on BBC2, the award-winning comedy show about aspiring singer-songwriter John Shuttleworth returns to radio. (NB: There was also a New Year's Special on 31-12 - see below.) (Wed 11:00pm; 15m)
1: Chic Ken - John's wife Mary has sprained her ankle at step class while trying to keep up with `Nutbush City Limits'. She does not appreciate his loving attentions, and John finds himself envying neighbour Ken's bachelor existence.
2: Ping-Pong Pangs - John wants to play table tennis, but his wife Mary is too busy and daughter Karen is not interested. Sole agent Ken Worthington is more receptive to John's offer, but a badly timed window closure threatens John's hopes of a sporty evening.
3: Radio Shuttleworth - John finds running his own radio station has its problems when Mary proves to be a reluctant celebrity and Ken uses the commercial breaks to advertise his toaster.
4: Caravan Capers - A romantic break for John and Mary is threatened by Ken's fascination with the sturdy chrome ladder on Doreen Melody's camper van.
5: John Le Shuttle - Ken's decision to give his agency a technological facelift makes John question the value of progress. What is wrong with dining at the garden centre, and what is a compass really for?
6: Midsummer Madras - Mary spies a mouse in the kitchen. Or is it a leaf blown in on a summer's breeze? John investigates with the help of neighbour Ken Worthington and his clarinet.
(08-10 to 12-11-1997; Rpt) My Life As A Car (Mark Wallington) Phil Daniels stars in the automotive comedy series. Also featuring Chris Jury, Chris Emmett, Sally Grace, Sarah Parkinson, Joanna Brookes, Sally Grace, Sally Phillips, Toby Longworth, Joanna Brookes, Colleen Prendergast, Jonathan Aris, Peter Serafinowicz, Melanie Hudson and Meera Syal. (Wed 11:30pm; 30m)
1: As Barry Harris drives down the winding road of life, we meet his first love, Lucy. The car that takes him on this part of his journey? A two-tone blue Rover 100.
2: A new motorway link road has come to town, bringing with it a hitcher thumbing a lift to... North Africa. Decision time - does Barry's future lie on the road to Marrakesh in his trusty Transit van?
3: Barry has had a terrible accident and lies comatose in hospital. Everyone has their own idea on how to bring him round, but it is Lionel who hits on the idea of bringing a very special person to the ward.
4: Grandma is receiving strange messages through the fillings in her teeth, and Barry's wife Clare has some very special news for him.
5: MHD 124 - Barry has taken over the family greeting-card business and all seems well - until the Triumph 6 and Becky catch his eye.
6: 4WD - A happy, middle-aged Barry is taking life as it comes in his sturdy Java blue Explorer four-wheel drive. But his son Cliff has other ideas.
(13-10 to 03-11-1997; Rpt) Ballylenon (Christopher Fitz-Simon) Four episodes of the comedy drama series set in Ballylenon, Co Donegal. With Stella McCusker, Margaret D'Arcy and T P McKenna. Director Eoin O'Callaghan. (Mon 11:30pm; 30m)
1: Conditions should be fine for the tidy villages competition, but opinions differ as to how the funds should be raised and who should be doing the raising.
2: The arrival of a distinguished relative sets alarm bells ringing in Vera McConkey's manual telephone exchange, especially when Ms Boal reveals a former acquaintance.
3: The McConkeys' distinguished relative, Sister Gabriel, would appear to have left her order. And, as if to add insult to Muriel's injury, she develops an unexpected closeness with Phonise Doherty.
4: An offer of employment in Scotland for the Rev Hawthorne raises the expectations of Ms Boal, while other factions hope they will both leave Ballylenon once and for all.
(31-10-1997; Rpt) The Squaw (Bram Stoker, abr Donald Bancroft, read by Dyfed Thomas) A chilling story by the master of the macabre.(Fri 11:45pm; 15m)
(04 to 25-11-1997; Rpt) Imperial Palace (Arnold Bennett, dram Peter Ling) The classic novel set in the 1930s. With Robin Ellis, Derek Waring, Colleen Prendergast, Charlotte Attenborough and Ann Beach. Director Enyd Williams. (Tues 6:30pm; 30m)
1: Some new faces arrive at the hotel.
2: The threat of a takeover at the hotel.
3: There is some staff unrest at the hotel.
4: From Paris to London - and some changes of heart at the hotel.
(06-11 to 11-12-1997) On The Town With The League Of Gentlemen (wri/starring Mark Gatiss, Reece Shearsmith, Steve Pemberton & Jeremy Dyson) The black comedy series. (NB: I've included this due to it's overall theme even though it's basically a sketch show.) (Thur 6:30pm; 30m)
1: Perrier Award winners star in a macabre comedy show set in the town of Spent.
2: The town of Spent is holding a fun run.
3: The School - The secondary school in the town of Spent tries to improve its relationship with the community.
4: Bonfire Nights - A bridegroom disappears from a rowdy stag night, and the local kids have got a new guy for the town bonfire.
5: The Wedding - No synopsis.
6: Surprise - Christmas party time in the town of Spent.
(19-11 to -12-1997) The Iguanodon (Paul Lucas) A three-part comedy adventure. Sam Varley needs lift back to the mainland. Mr Brook is looking for an adventure at sea after a lifetime in custards. Neither gets what he expects on a boat called the Iguanodon. With Paul Haigh, Dermot Crowley, Bernard Cribbins and Rosemary Leach. (Wed 11:00pm; 30m)
1: Away & Slightly To The Left - Passengers and crew drift into the Woe Betides, a kind of Bermuda Triangle without the weather... or the geometry.
2: Big Fat Liars - Don finds out that smoking and hiding do not mix. Passengers and crew of the Iguanodon come second in a run-in with some very insistent pirates.
3: Two Sausage Rolls The Seven Of Us - Having had their own boat stolen by pirates, passengers and crew are aboard the Malodorous, a hideous craft which appears to be disintegrating beneath their feet. Will they ever get back to the mainland?
(19-11 to 10-12-1997; Rpt) Hair In The Gate (Clive Coleman) Four-part comedy series set in the world of arts broadcasting. Starring Geoffrey Whitehead, Rebecca Front and Joanna Monro. (Wed 11:30pm; 30m)
1: Brian wants `Arting About' to cover the Verona Opera Festival, but new presenter Sheena would rather go to Birmingham for a country and western show. Does she have an ulterior motive?
2: A mysteriously beautiful woman appears to Brian. Sheena investigates financial shenanigans on sci-fi series `The Z-Folders'. What is the bizarre connection?
3: Sheena finds corruption in lottery funding for the arts, while Tim tries to perfect a system for choosing those magic numbers.
4: Tim meets his No 1 fan. Research for Brian's warts-and-all biography of leading playwright Harold Pointer gets him into hot water.
(20-11 to 25-12-1997) Ray Bradbury's Tales Of The Bizarre (Ray Bradbury) The author introduces dramatised versions of six of his short stories. (Thur 11:00pm; 30m)
1: The Man Upstairs (dram Catherine Czerkawska) A new guest in a boarding house is disliked by the grandson of the lady who runs the house. But why should this be, and what action might the boy take? With Geoffrey Lee, Mary Riggans, Finlay Welsh and Charles Kearney.
2: Jack In The Box (dram Brian Sibley) School is just up the stairs, and each birthday you get a new room. If your life was changed by changing the world in which you live, would that be a freedom, or a new nightmare? With Richard Pearce, Ed Bishop and Carolyn Jones. Director Adrian Bean.
3: The Scythe (dram Brian Sibley) There may be no such thing as a free lunch, but what about a free farm? An Okie family finds one with the previous occupant dead on his bed. With John Guerrasio and Briony Glassco. Director Tabitha Potts.
4: The Wind (dram Brian Sibley) Friends - especially the neurotic ones - can be a damned nuisance. Weather is weather, and frantic phone calls on the night of that special dinner with other friends can - and maybe should - be ignored. With Vincent Marzello, Stuart Milligan and Liza Ross. Director Adrian Bean.
5: And So Died Riabouchinska (dram Catherine Czerkawska) A ventriloquist's doll is just that - a doll. But Riabouchinska is different. Her original was so beautiful, and the ventriloquist loved her so much... With Liam Brennan, Vari Sylvester and John Ramage. Director Hamish Wilson.
6: The Day It Rained For Ever (dram Catherine Czerkawska) The heat in the old hotel gets worse with each winter day - until 29 January, when it always rains. But if this year is different, will the three old men survive the sun and heat much longer? With Michael MacKenzie. Director Hamish Wilson.
(01 to 29-12-1997; Rpt) Death On The Nile (Agatha Christie, dram Michael Bakewell) With John Moffatt, Elaine Pyke, Donald Sinden, Robert Daws and Amanda Barton-Chapple. Director Enyd Williams. (Mon 11:30pm; 30m)
1: Hercule Poirot decides to take a little holiday to Egypt.
2: Hercule Poirot senses the atmosphere of evil around him.
3: Hercule Poirot has an overwhelming sense of impending doom.
4: Hercule Poirot is baffled - there has been a murder, but the main suspect could not possibly have committed the crime.
5: Hercule Poirot's holiday has become a hideous nightmare.
(10 to 31-12-1997) The (Almost) Accidental Adventures Of Bell & Todd (John Eggleston) A six-part, light-hearted comedy adventure series. Two friends are thrown into a mad and mysterious world by the wry narrator, Diana, played by June Whitfield. With Matthew Bell and Toby Longworth.(NB: No individual synopses; Not broadcast 24-12-1997, and continued in 1998.) (Wed 11:00pm; 15m)
(10 to 31-12-1997) TV Dinners (Keith Lawes) A six-part darkly comic tale by a first-time writer. With Timothy West, Maggie Steed, Richard O'Brien, Jonathan Coy and Harry Capehorn. (NB: Not broadcast 24-12-1997, and continued in 1998.) (Wed 11:15pm; 15m)
1: Every Cloud Has A Silver Lining.
2: Blast From The Past.
3: The Happiest Days Of Your Life.
(22-12-1997) Consider the Butterfly (Patricia Hannah) Great thinkers meet their maker as Primrose Path completes her practical training in the Central Institute under the auspices of her exacting tutor, Dr Reaper. With Vivienne Dixon, Jan Ravens and James Bryce. (Mon 11:00pm; 30m)
(31-12-1997) John Shuttleworth's Open House (wri/performed by Graham Fellows) Live from Sheffield, a New Year's Eve party from the house and garden of the Shuttleworths. Unfortunately, Mary and the kids have made alternative arrangements, so John is left to greet the celebrity guests on his own. With guest Tony Roche. (Wed 11:30pm; 30m)
CHILDREN'S BBC RADIO 4
7:00pm Sundays; 30mins
(18-05 to 01-06-1997) Over Sea, Under Stone (Susan Cooper, dram David Calcutt) The first of Cooper's classic sequence of novels `The Dark Is Rising'. With Ronald Pickup, Naomi Kerbel, Ben Gutteridge and Edward Clarke.
3: The Trust Of Logres - Simon, Jane and Barney are near the end of their quest - over sea and under stone - but it is not just the tide that is closing in.
(08 to 29-06-1997) Back Home (Michelle Magorian, dram Martin Jameson) Wartime story. With Jessica Marshall-Gardiner, Richard Claxton, Eleanor Chidgzey, Clemmi Burton-Hill, Emily Richard, Mary Wimbush and George Allonby. Director David Hitchinson.
1: Evacuee Rusty returns to Britain with an American accent, and meets a mother she does not recognise. Gardiner, Director David Hitchinson.
2: The war is over, but for Rusty, the battle is just beginning. She moves to Guildford to face her acid-tongued grandmother.
3: Beatie has died and Rusty has lost her only friend in England. She is desperate to get back to her second family in America.
4: Will Lance help Rusty to escape to America - or will the school finally break her independent spirit?
(06 to 20-07-1997) Wormholes (Martin Jameson & Peter Kerry) A three-part sci-fi drama. With Ben Stapleton, David Derbyshire, Tim Pigott-Smith and Jane Danson. Music composed by Paul Cargill. Director Martin Jameson.
1: Long Sunday - Spin's dad disappeared seven years ago. Everyone claimed he was a mad scientist, and his father's strange behaviour has made Spin a prime target for the school bully. Then Spin decides to find out the truth about what his dad was working on.
2: Parallel Lines - Paul Musselwhite has disappeared, zapped by the strange machine in Spin's shed. Spin and Laurie realise that they have only one option - they must go through the machine themselves.
3: Judgement Day - Spin, Laurie and Jaymee jump into another universe in search of Spin's missing father, but this time they are stunned to find themselves in a Manchester that is deep in the grip of a dangerous civil war.
(27-07-1997) The Teenage Detective (Scott Cherry) A five-part drama. Life is sweet for Danny Blue, a sharp-suited detective from London, until heiress Pippa George arrives at his door. With Dexter Fletcher, Cathy Sara and Paula Jacobs. Director Sally Avens. (NB: Note that this is the serial billed, however on successive weeks, the following story is listed...)
(27-07 to 17-08-1997) Tales From The Bog End Road (Jenny McDade) With Claire Reid and Pamela Power. Director Sally Avens.
1: No synopsis (see above).
2: Destination Denze - Veronica decides she needs a new team to secure her footballing future.
3: Bewigged, Bothered & Bewildered - Veronica's cover is blown when her mum discovers that she is not at mass on Sundays but playing football.
4: The Two Ronnies - There is a wedding in the Cunliffe family, but unfortunately it clashes with Veronica's chance to be a footballing superstar.
(24-08-1997) The Angel Of Nitshill Road (Anne Fine, dram Janys Chambers) Bullying is a fact of life at Nitshill Road School. The pupils are miserable and the teachers have given up trying to do anything about it - until the day that the mysterious Celeste arrives. The consequences are so extraordinary that everyone begins to wonder if there is more to her than meets the eye. With Michelle Fairclough and Kate O'Regan. Directed by Martin Jameson.
(31-08 to 28-09-1997) Tom's Midnight Garden (Philippa Pearce, dram Judy Allen) With Peter England, Una Stubbs and Crawford Logan. Director John Taylor. (NB: The same synopsis appeared on 31-08 and 07-09, the first probably delayed due to Diana's death.)
1: Tom Long's stay with Aunt Gwen and Uncle Alan turns from tedium to adventure when the clock in the hall strikes thirteen.
2: Hatty shows Tom the secret of the clock.
3: Repeated synopsis, as above.
4: Tom makes a remarkable discovery in the tower of Ely Cathedral.
(05 to 12-10-1997) Waiting For Aliens (Pete Johnson) With Ellie Beavan and Martin Delaney. Director Sally Avens.
1: The appearance of a strange figure in Daniel and Laura's school uncovers the story of a boy who went missing more than thirty years ago. But the answer to where he is now seems too incredible to be true...
2: Will tonight be the night that Laura and Daniel get proof of life on other planets, or is there no answer to the mystery of Tom's disappearance?
(19-10 to 02-11-1997; Rpt) Into The Dark (Nicholas Wilde, dram Peter Kerry) With Alex Carter, Jamie Lee and Sue Johnston. Director Chris Wallis.
1: Malham Cottage - Matt Mason encounters a strange reaction from a woman he meets on his first holiday by the sea.
2: Roly - Now that he has met Roly, Matt's holiday is going to be a great success. But why won't Roly meet his mum?
3: The Seagull - Roly is coming to tea at last.
(09 to 30-11-1997) The Dark Is Rising (Susan Cooper, dram David Calcutt) The classic fantasy. With James Walmsley, Ronald Pickup, Struan Rodger and Geoffrey Banks. Director Nigel Bryant.
1: The Waking - Christmas is coming, and young Will Stanton is wishing for snow. But he has not bargained on the frightening adventures which will come with it...
2: The Learning - Carol-singing and present-opening - but this is no ordinary Christmas for Will, as the powers of the Dark close in.
3: The Betrayal - The Dark seals off the village with ice and driving snow, and it has an ally - a traitor at the heart of the circle.
4: The Hunting - The Lords of the Dark close in for the kill, and only one power can now equal theirs - the Wild Hunt.
(07 to 14-12-1997) The Dragon Of Og (Rumer Godden, dram Fiona McGarry) A Scottish medieval fantasy. With Jimmy Chisholm, Emma Currie and Liam Brennan. Director Pam Wardell.
1: The arrival of Highland chieftain Angus Og brings many changes to the Border kingdom of Tundergath - not least for the dragon who lives there...
2: Angus Og is determined to get rid of the Dragon of Og, but Matilda has other ideas.
(21 to 28-12-1997; Rpt) The Chronicles Of Narnia - The Horse & His Boy (C S Lewis, dram Brian Sibley) Four-part fantasy. With Martin Jarvis and Fiona Shaw. Director John Taylor. (NB: Continued into 1998.)
1: Shasta and Aravis are both fleeing cruel parents, and plan to ride to freedom on stolen horses. But the animals turn out to be talking horses from Narnia, and the children find themselves on an extraordinary adventure.
2: Mistaken for Prince Corin, Shasta is taken to the palace of the Narnian visitors, while Aravis must pass herself off as a slave. But a plot to abduct Queen Susan is forcing the Narnians to flee, and the horses and their children become entangled in the plan.
THE MONDAY PLAY
7:45pm Mondays; Various lengths (as noted); Individual synopses where available.
(02-06-1997) Fond Memories (Jim Hitchmough) When Helen visits her estranged father; Edgar; she has only one question on her mind. And no matter how difficult it might be; they both must face the truth. With Eve Matheson; Michael Jayson; Suzanne Hitchmough and Jonathan Wyatt. Director Brian Lighthill. (75m)
(09-06-1997) Fatherland (Robert Harris, dram John Dryden) The bestselling novel. 1964: Detective Xavier March is asked to investigate the suspicious death of a retired German senior civil servant. His enquiries lead him to uncover a terrifying secret that has so far been hidden from the world. With Anton Lesser, Graham Padden, Robert Portal and Peter Ellis. Director John Dryden (120m)
(16-06-1997) Friends Of Oscar (Rod Dungate) 1895: the Marquess of Queensbury, furious with Oscar Wilde for pursuing a relationship with his son, Lord Alfred Douglas, leaves a notorious message at Oscar Wilde's club. Wilde prosecutes Quennsbury for libel, and when Queensbury retaliates with evidence relating to Wilde's personal life, a witch hunt begins in London's gay community. With Jamie Newall, Daniel Isaacs and James Dreyfus. Director Bill Alexander. (120m)
(23-06-1997) Saying No (David Britton) Co-produced with ABC Australia. When A-muoi arrives as a refugee in Western Australia, the story of the outlaw Moondyne Joe inspires her attempts to stand up for herself in an alien land. Director Alison Hindell. (75m)
(30-06-1997) Secure Within (Martyn Wade) Black comedy. Owen's loathing of the outside world has led him to barricade himself and his family inside their home. Having decapitated an intruder; Owen locks himself away; unaware that in his absence his wife and her stepson are planning a little revenge... With Anna Massey; Brenda Blethyn; Stephen Moore and Julian Rhind-Tutt. Director Cherry Cookson. (75m)
(07-07-1997) Breathe In, Breathe Out (Simon Block) For five years; three amateur astronomers have met once a month; in a converted garden shed; to observe the moon through a second-hand telescope. Tonight; like the Apollo 14 golf ball; their routine world is knocked out of its orbit. With James Taylor; Sheila Allen; Sean Baker and Tom Watt. Director David Hunter. (75m)
(14-07-1997) The Dead Wait (Paul Herzberg) During the Angolan Civil War in 1976; a white South African conscript was ordered to carry a wounded black freedom fighter on his back through the bush. The dying man whispered in the soldier's ear; and what he heard is changing his life. With Mick Ford; Paul Herzberg and Colin McFarlane. Director Andy Jordan. (90m)
(21-07-1997) The Venus Bar (Yana Stajno) When a chocolate manufacturer is looking for a model to promote a new bar; a spotty chocoholic decides to give it a whirl. With Rachel Atkins; Nicholas Boulton and Robin Bailey. Directed by Peter Kavanagh. (75m)
(28-07-1997) This Lime Tree Bower (Conor McPherson) A deadpan comedy by the award-winning writer. In an off-season seaside town; three unlikely heroes tell the tale of a weekend in which nothing goes to plan. With Hugh O'Conor; Peter McDonald and Brendan Coyle. Director Jonquil Panting. (75m)
(04-08-1997) Pino Pelosi & The Boys (Jeff Young) Charismatic gang-leader Pete is obsessed with all things Italian: particulary the killing of film-maker Pasolini. With John Lloyd Fillingham: Stephen Lord and Eugene Salleh. Director Melanie Harris. (75m)
(11-08-1997) No programme.
(18-08-1997) The Dreams Of Tipu Sultan (Girish Karnad) A specially commissioned play to mark 50 years of Indian independence, which uses the dream diary of Tipu Sultan to tell the story of one of the last Indian rulers to defy the advance of British dominion. With Saeed Jaffrey as Tipu Sultan and Madhav Sharma as Ghulam Ali Khan. Director Jatinder Verma. (90m)
(25-08-1997) The Lady Of Shalott (John Fletcher) When an aged butterfly collector is found poisoned by chloroform, a journalist uncovers a scandal which rocks the genteel tranquility of Victorian England. A curious menage a trois is revealed between a 16-year-old girl, the local vicar and the victim. With Sarah-Jane Holm, Ian Hughes and Clive Swift. Director Cathryn Horn. (90m)
(01-09-1997) As You Like It (adap/dir Ned Chaillet) William Shakespeare's comedy of true love, misplaced love, gender confusion and reconciliation. With Imogen Stubbs, Toby Stephens and Ronald Pickup. (120m)
(08-09-1997) The Lower Depths (Maxim Gorky, adap Alan Plater) The arrival of the vagrant Luka has unexpected consequences for the residents of a Moscow dosshouse. With John Woodvine, Malcolm Storry and Glyn Houston. Director Alison Hindell. (105m)
(15-09-1997) Swine (Diane Samuels) A young Asian girl discovers that her local mosque has been desecrated and daubed with racist slogans. A Rabbi finds her cemetery vandalised. Then both women inexplicably disappear. Muslim, Jewish and Christian lives become entwined in the pursuit of a common goal. With Rina Mahoney and Jane Bertish. Director Tracey Neale. (90m)
(22-09-1997) Last Bus Home (Gill Adams) From the winner of an Edinburgh Fringe First in 1994. Six school children: angered by the murder of their friend Sally and the meagreness of her burial: decide to take action. With Kelly Lawton: Louise Ross and Stephanie Galbraith. Director Kate Rowland. (90m)
(29-09-1997) The House Of Doctor Dee (Peter Ackroyd, dram Alan Drury) Matthew Palmer is left an old house in Clerkenwell. Once owned by an Elizabethan scholar who was reputedly involved in black magic: the house hides dark and mysterious secrets. With Philip Glenister and Nigel Anthony. Director Claire Grove. (90m)
(06-10-1997; Rpt) The Playboy Of The Western World (JM Synge, adap Peter Kavanagh) Pegeen is set to marry a timorous farmer in the West of Ireland, until a real adventurer walks into her life. With Aisling O'Sullivan, Finbar Lynch and Dillie Keane. Director Peter Kavanagh. (90m)
(13-10-1997) The Story Of Jude (Geoffrey Beevers) Jude gives up all his possessions to work with the homeless. In an uncertain world he wants moral certainty. His wife suspects there is another woman. With Larry Lamb and Susan Wooldridge. Director Claire Grove. (90m)
(20-10-1997; Rpt) Burdalane (Judith Adams) Mad Lady Grange, abandoned by her husband on St Kilda after three mock funerals, battles to recover her mind and identity. But the island itself is involved in a bitter struggle for survival. With Kathryn Hunter, Campbell Morrison and Alistair Galraith. Director Michael Fox. (90m)
(27-10-1997; Rpt) Marked For Place (Ronan Bennett) With Michael Melia as Maurice and David Herlihy as Emmet. Emmet is a Northern Irish prisoner in an English jail. He believes that anger is the best response to the absurdities and injustices of his situation. Those around him preach patience. With Tom Magill: Colin Carnegie: Anthony Frew and Trevor Moore. Director Pam Brighton. (90m)
(03-11-1997) Killer Country (Graham White) The peace of a rural backwater is shattered when two seemingly ordinary teenagers embark on a reign of terror: leaving behind them a trail of chaos and devastation. With a Britpop soundtrack: the play captures the mood of a generation and the nightmares of its parents. With Emma Owen-Smith and Andrew Falvey. Director Cathryn Horn. (75m)
(10-11-1997) Search & Destroy (Mike Walker) Robert Stone is a laureate computer programmer - a man with a creator's intimate knowledge of the cyber universe. But when circumstances suck him into the bloodbath of an African war: the rockets and the terror are no longer virtual. With Joe Tucker: Adjoa Andoh and Okon Jones. Director AJ Quinn. (75m)
(17-11-1997) A State Macabre (Pearse Elliott) An old man lies in Belfast City Hospital: having been burnt out of his home. It is July: the month of the drums: and the trauma of his life comes spilling out. Starring James Ellis: Katy Tumelty and Eileen McCloskey. Director Pam Brighton. (60m)
(24-11-1997) The Paganini Dream (Max Hillman) A young musician ready to compete for the Mendelssohn Prize receives a night-time visit from Paganini: who tells him that the only way to achieve perfection in his playing is to have his heart broken. Thus begins the boy's unusual quest. With Freddie Jones: Maggie Steed: Peter Shorey and Sunny Ormonde. Director Kristine Landon-Smith. (75m)
(01-12-1997) The Trick Is To Keep Breathing (Michael Boyd) A radio version of Boyd's stage dramatisation of Janice Galloway's award-winning novel - the extraordinary: tragicomic account of one woman's descent into mental breakdown. With Siobhan Redmond: Jennifer Black and Eddi Reader. Director Michael Boyd. (90m)
(08-12-1997) Stopping The Rising (Robin Glendinning) Dubliner Tom Hennessy: a survivor of the Easter Rising of 1916: is struggling to write a commemorative speech as the current Troubles begin. He remembers how he and others wanted to stop the rising and how their failure to do so altered the course of history. (90m)
(15-12-1997) A Miracle In No-Man's Land (Alex Jones) The Western Front: December 1917: Court Martial. Joseph Taylor maintains that he was commanded to lay down his arms and abandon the war by a vision of Jesus Christ in No-Man's Land. With Alex Jones: Christopher Scott: Anthony Pedley and John Webb. Director Sue Wilson. (90m)
(22-12-1997) King Matt (Janus Korczak, dram Martin Jameson) The cautionary children's novel. The story of a child king who finds that distributing free chocolate to children does not solve the problems for which other monarchs are willing to go to war. With Clive Russell: Russell Dixon and Malcolm Hebden. Director Jeremy Mortimer. (90m)
(29-12-1997) Fighting Over Beverley (Israel Horovitz) The British premiere of Horovitz's internationally acclaimed Afternoon Play. A Yorkshireman belatedly flies to America to reclaim the war bride taken from him by an American war hero 45 years earlier. With Rosemary Harris: Ian Carmichael: Elizabeth McGovern and Israel Horovitz. Director Ned Chaillet. (90m)
SATURDAY NIGHT THEATRE
8:50pm Saturdays (some extra plays at 10:15pm, as noted, when the Late Night Theatre slot was dropped, September through to November); 45/60mins.
(07-06-1997) Patricia's Progress (Tony Mulholland) With Lucy Treager; Michael Lumsden; Kim Wall and Alexander Morton. Director Brian Lighthill.
3: A Decision - 1996: Birmingham South Central will soon be selecting their candidate to fight the 1997 general election; and Patricia plans to be in the running.
(14-06 to 05-07-1997) Hulme Stories (Bill Taylor) Four stories about three generations of the fictional Harrington family; based on the real-life memories of a Manchester community. With John McCardle, Christine Mackie, Jane Hazelgrove, Russell Dixon, Julia Ford, Matthew Dunster and Keith Ladd. Musicians Harry Stafford; Tim Scott and Stefan Hambrook. Producer Michael Fox.
1: Something In The Air - 1969: Bulldozers are closing in and families are being moved into the new unfinished flats; but George refuses to budge.
2: Out Of Order - 1974: A family tragedy for Susan; a single mother with two children; forces her to reassess her passive acceptance of the conditions in which she lives.
3: Dog Days - 1987: Hulme is now a haven for students; drop-outs and drug addicts; as well as home to some long-surviving families. Everyone has a band; including Susan's daughter; Clare. Old family conflicts are ignited when Clare's cousin Paul visits; looking for an experience of life on the wild side.
4: Seduction - 1995. The crescents have been demolished; and a new Hulme has emerged from the rubble. As a party of forty Chinese town planners are inspecting the redevelopment; Clare sees an opportunity to impress her council boss. Susan looks on with pride; but wonders what thirty years of struggle have achieved.
(12-07-1997) The Eyes Of Max Carrados (Ernest Bramagh, dram Bert Coules) 1923. A desperate girl tries to clear her father; and only the celebrated blind detective Max Carrados can do it. With Simon Callow as Max and Lionel Jeffries as Parkinson. With Teresa Gallagher; Matthew Marsh and Philip Glenister. Director Alan Drury.
(19-07-1997) The Ingenious Mind Of Rigby Lacksome (Ernest Bramah, dram Sue Rodwell) A blind detective tangles with suffragettes and the Bard. With Simon Callow as Max and Lionel Jeffries as Parkinson. With Stephen Tompkinson; Lynsey Baxter and Oona Beeson. Director Alan Drury.
(26-07-1997) The Secret Of Headlam Height (Ernest Bramah, dram Roger Danes) The blind detective Max Carrados battles with spies on the eve of the First World War. With Simon Callow as Max and Lionel Jeffries as Parkinson. With Charles Simpson; Brett Usher and Steve Hodson. Director Alan Drury.
(02 to 09-08-1997) Accused Of Murder (Pieter Rogers) Two Victorian murder mysteries. Directed by Celia de Wolff. (NB: Neither were specifically billed under the SNT tag.)
1: My Beloved Husband - There is some doubt as to whether the accused woman is guilty of murder. With Emma Fielding, John McAndrew and Joanna David.
2: The Alabama Belle - The story of Florence Maybrick, notorious as the defendant in a sensational murder case in Liverpool in 1889. With Robin Weaver, Gavin Muir and David Collings.
(16-08 to 06-09-1997) The Casebook Of Sherlock Holmes (Sir Arthur Conan Doyle) Four classic mysteries starring Clive Merrison as Holmes and Michael Williams as Dr Watson. Director Enyd Williams.
1: The Three Garridebs - Two men stand to inherit a fortune - but only if they can find a third person who shares their unusual surname. Featuring Lou Hersch as John Garrideb and James Taylor as Nathan Garrideb.
2: The Problem Of Thor Bridge - When a beautiful young governess is accused of murder: her employer calls upon the services of Sherlock Holmes. With William Hootkins: Charlotte Attenborough and Charles Simpson.
3: The Creeping Man - A distinguished scientist is behaving very oddly - enough to make his faithful old dog attack him and scare his own daughter out of her wits. Featuring Robin Ellis as Professor Presbury. Director Patrick Rayner.
4: Shoscombe Old Place - Holmes and Watson make a gruesome discovery in an old crypt. With Nicholas Le Prevost and Donald Pickering.
(13 to 20-09-1997) The Hollow Man (John Dickson Carr, dram Peter Ling) With Donald Sinden; John Hartley and Nigel Davenport. Director Enyd Williams.
1: Into Thin Air - Dr Fell becomes embroiled in a mystery when an illusionist threatens an eminent professor.
2: The Second Bullet - Dr Fell unravels the true history of the three coffins.
(27-09 to 11-10-1997; Rpt) My Uncle Freddie (Alex Ferguson) With Shaun Prendergast and Gareth Brown. Director Melanie Harris.
1: Heart's Ache, Heart's Ease- Ten-year-old Lecky and his uncle Freddie rescue the Prince of Wales from the Tyne. But is he the true prince? Will the course of history change in the North East?
2: A Time Of Deep Affection - Ten-year-old Lecky continues his hopeless pursuit of Charlotte McAtominey: the butcher's daughter with hair red as fire and eyes green as the sea. With all these distractions: can he hope to win a scholarship to Jarrow Grammar School?
3: A Catalogue Of Disasters - Dad loses his job at the bakery, Lecky is being bullied, and Charlotte McAtominey still does not recognise him. But a series of surprising coincidences brings the family back together: and Lecky is the hero of the hour.
(27-09 to 04-10-1997; 10:15pm; Rpt) The Man In The Elephant Mask (Peter Wolf) With Roger Allam and Tim Pigott-Smith. Director Cherry Cookson. (NB: Originally tx'd in the Afternoon Play slot in June.)
1: Patron Saint Of Outcasts - An alternative portrait of 'Elephant Man' John Merrick, who, despite his afflictions, felt that his uniqueness was a blessing.
2: Diseases & Messiahs - John Merrick feels that he has at last escaped from the hands of his tormentors into the safe protection of Frederick Treves at the London Hospital.
(11-10 to 01-11-1997; 10:15pm; Rpt) God's Country (Lee Hall) With Gareth Brown, Kulwant Singh Bhatia, Charlie Hardwick, Hayley Richardson: Michael Walper, Tracey Wilkinson and Becky Simpson. Director Kate Rowland. (NB: Originally broadcast in the Afternoon Play slot; A note from Clive Lever - 'The four plays by Lee Hall, including I Love You Jimmy Spud and Spoonface Steinberg are shown as a serial, where they are in fact a series of four separate monologues. You may remember that Spoonface Steinberg transferred to Television, where it made quite an impact. It was also briefly available to buy through the BBC Audio Collection.')
1: I Luv U: Jimmy Spud - Jimmy Spud is Newcastle's only trainee angel: determined to solve cosmic mysteries and save his father from the grip of lung cancer. A play about poverty: illness: love and redemption.
2: The Love Letters Of Ragie Patel - A chance meeting with the amazing Jimmy Spud convinces Ragie Patel that he might be a Hindu god. When Nandini asks him to act as a go-between: he is convinced of his powers.
3: The Sorrows Of Sandra Saint - Sandra and her brother Scout are still grieving for their father. Sandra is 14 years old: difficult: angry at the world and drives her mother mad. Scout is 12 years old and believes that if he buries a sock in the garden he might bring his father back to life. But Sandra has other ideas in mind.
4: Spoonface Steinberg - Spoonface is seven years old: autistic and terminally ill with cancer. She is fascinated by opera music: by the divas who die and by the way her parents behave. She tries to come to terms with the meaning of life and: supported by their cleaner: she comes to terms with her own extraordinary life.
(25-10 to 15-11-1997; Rpt) The Hydro (Ronald Frame) A four-part entertainment is set in a luxury hotel in the Scottish Highlands and stars Eliza Langland and David Rintoul. With Sheila Donald, Ann Scott-Jones, Finlay McLean and Crawford Logan. Director Patrick Rayner. (NB: In the 8:50pm SNT slot, but not billed as such.)
1: Fee Drummond has taken over the running of the Carnbeg Hydro following the death of her husband in a speedboat accident. Fee is not short of enemies who would love to see her fail.
2: While the staff of the Hydro start learning Japanese and having their ``potential superfactors'' assessed by a management guru, Fee runs into trouble with the bank.
3: A distinguished concert violinist suffers stage fright on the eve of the Edinburgh Festival. Love seems to be blooming in the Hydro kitchens. Mr Dunbar from the bank drops a legal bombshell. Fee gets the surprise of her life. W
4: Fee's husband Colin has returned from the dead, expecting to pick up his old life again. A guest's exotic lady friend is causing comment in the Palm Court. And skeletons begin to tumble out of the Drummond closet. Can Fee hold her nerve?
(08-11-1997; 10:15pm; Rpt) A Game Of Three Halves (Stan Hey & John Fletcher) A humorous and scathing satire on the present state of football. With Helen Baxendale: Tom Georgeson and Anthony Head. Director Foz Allan. Kate Rowland.
(15-11-1997; 10:15pm; Rpt) Let Them Call It Jazz (Jean Rhys, dram Winsome Pinnock) 1950s Notting Hill. Selina is offered a room by the mysterious Mr Sims. At least she has her music. No-one can take that away. With Marianne Jean-Baptiste: John Salthouse and Adjoa Andoh. Director Claire Grove. Kate Rowland.
(22-11-1997; Rpt) Nimby (Stephen Dinsdale & Jerome Vincent) The demolition work for the new slip road is just about to begin: when Eamon sees a fairy standing on his gear stick. With Rachel Atkins: Ioan Meredith: Mark Bonnar and Sean Barrett. Director David Blount.
(29-11 to 20-12-1997; Rpt) Victoria Station (Steve Chambers) Series set in Victoria Station, Bridgford: a century ago. With Sean Baker, Gavin Muir, Christopher Scott, John Hartley and Tom Bevan. Directors David Hunter & Marion Nancarrow.
1: Goods Perishable - Wednesday 27 November 1896 - A day notable for an expeditious recovery and a recovered expedition.
2: No synopsis.
3: Express Desire - Wednesday 11 December 1896 - a day notable for ancient passion and modern excitement.
4: Silent Night Train - Wednesday 18 December 1896 - a day notable for a rescued promise and a hopeful delivery.
(27-12-1997; Rpt) Love Divine (Martyn Wade) Three-part serial about the life of John Wesley: the father of Methodism. With Clive Francis: Michael Cochrane and Mary Wimbush. Director Cherry Cookson. (NB: Continued into 1998.)
LATE NIGHT THEATRE
10:15pm Saturdays; 60mins (unless otherwise noted); The banner was abandoned in September, with it's slot being taken for a time by extra Saturday Night Theare plays. It returned in late November for a series of repeats.
(07-06-1997) My Bed In Darkness (Jonathan Myerson) London's glitter tarnishes rapidly for those who are young, poor and sleeping rough. But sometimes life on the street is better than any other option. With James Thomas, Clare Isaac, Robert Harper and James Westaway. Director Alison Hindell.
(14-06-1997) Homeboys (Roy Williams) Teenage rebellion threatens to tear two families apart in this play set on the streets of West London. With Don Gilet, Vivienne Rochester and Akim Mogaji.
(21-06-1997) Worldplay - City Of Hands (Stephen Bain & Deborah Tucker) Playwright Anthony Minghella introduces the first festival of international radio drama. Over the next six weeks, BBC Radio 4 and other English broadcasters are presenting a series of plays from Canada, Hong Kong, South Africa and the United States. The first of the series was originally broadcast on New Zealand Public Radio. A group of people enter a competition to win a car, the winner being whoever can keep a hand on the car longest. As the days progress, the competition takes on a surreal quality. With Geraldine Brophy and Peter Kaa. Director Carol Dee.
(28-06-1997) Worldplay - Dragon Island (Dino Mahoney) First broadcast on Radio Television Hong Kong. The story of Jade who, when pursued by two English soldiers, a sheep and a love-sick ram, falls down a mining shaft in Wales to emerge in Hong Kong, on the back of a dragon. With Angaharad James, Lizzy Lui and Chow War Keung. Director Jonathan Douglas.
(05-07-1997) Worldplay - Mourning Dove (Emil Sher) First broadcast on CBC Radio, Toronto. Doug Ramsay watches as his daughter, who is stricken with severe cerebral palsy, declines daily. He resolves to put an end to her suffering, but will he commit an act of cold-blooded murder or will he be responsible for the ultimate act of parental love for a helpless child? With R H Thompson, Martha Burne, David MacFarlane and Ken James. Director Gregory J Sinclair.
(12-07-1997) Worldplay - Lapse In Behaviour (Timothy Daly) First broadcast by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Harold Carpenter is a piano teacher, middle-aged and mild-mannered. He leads a predictable and ordered life. But his peaceful existence is shattered by the arrival of his new music pupil. With Peter Carroll, Judy Farr and Neil Fitzpatrick. Director David Chandler. Martha Burne, David MacFarlane and Ken James. Director Gregory J Sinclair. (50m)
(12-07-1997) Write Out Loud - Highwayman's Heath / Once There Was A Man - A double bill of short plays, produced in association with the Arts Council. (10m)
(19-07-1997) Worldplay - Long Ago & Far Away (David Ives) In the bizarre and wildly comic world of Ives, almost anything can happen. What unites these short playlets in their celebration of human foibles and romantic yearning is a fine sense of the absurd. With Arye Gross, Dinah Manoff, Richard Kind, Samantha Bennett, Jane Brucker, Ian Gomez, Nia Vardalos, Tom Virtue. Directed by Ron West. Martha Burne, David MacFarlane and Ken James. Director Gregory J Sinclair.
(26-07-1997) Worldplay - March Soldier March (Richard Nwamba) Anthony Minghella introduces the last of six international radio plays. First broadcast on SAFM. Six young people, six different cultures and six contrasting visions of the world are united by the fact that they are all new recruits to the South African Defence Force in the new South Africa. With Douglas Bristow, Richard Nwamba and Hannes Potgleter. Director Hilary Keogh. Martha Burne, David MacFarlane and Ken James. Director Gregory J Sinclair. (50m)
(26-07-1997) Write Out Loud - Tales From The Pickle Cupboard / The Present - A double bill of short plays, produced in association with the Arts Council. (10m)
(02-08-1997) New Found Land - The Art Of Kindness (Charles Tidler) A double bill of short plays recorded in Toronto, Canada, co-produced by BBC Radio 4 and CBC. Jazz musician Johnny Tipton survives a car crash but discovers he has forgotten how to play the saxophone. His determination to play again drives him across the US border to where his past and his future await him. With Hardee Lineham, Nancy Palk and Mary Ellen Mahoney. Director William Lane. Martha Burne, David MacFarlane and Ken James. Director Gregory J Sinclair. (30m)
(02-08-1997) New Found Land - The Favour (George F Walker) When Max, a cop, and Jayne, a lawyer arranged to meet in a motel room there was always bound to be more to the deal than just sex. Martha Burne, David MacFarlane and Ken James. Director Gregory J Sinclair. (30m)
(09-08-1997) Gift From The North (David Pownall) With Barry Foster as Carlsen and Brian Glover as Greg. 1896. When a Lancashire fisherman catches a sturgeon, he is told it is the property of Queen Victoria. But how can he get the huge fish to the ageing - and indifferent - monarch? With Hugh Dickson, Stephen Thorne and Alex Lowe. Director Peter Kavanagh. Martha Burne, David MacFarlane and Ken James. Director Gregory J Sinclair.
(16 to 30-08-1997) Waterland (Graham Swift, dram Steve Chambers) With Roy Marsden as Tom, Tom Bevan and Deborah Findlay. Director David Hunter. (NB: The final set of plays under the Late Night Theatre banner.)
1: A Bruise Upon A Bruise - One summer's morning in 1943, Fenland lock-keeper Henry Crick discovers a drowned body. Forty years later his son Tom, a history teacher, begins to tell the strange story of his Fenland family.
2: The Saviour Of The World - History teacher Tom Crick continues to tell the watery stories of his family history - a child stolen, a child murdered and a child whose father believed he would be saviour of the world.
3: Adieu & Goodnight - History teacher Tom Crick concludes the strange watery stories of his family Fenland history - a child stolen, a child murdered and a child whose father believed he would be saviour of the world.
(06 to 20-09-1997) Diamonds (John Peacock) A trilogy that follows the progress of a flawed light Cape diamond and the fortunes of the Hallam family over 120 years. With Jonathan Firth, Tracy Ann Oberman, Gerard McDermott and Miles Anderson. Director David Hunter. (NB: Afternoon Play repeats from May/June, not billed as part of the then-defunct Late Night Theatre.)
1: Stars Of The Orange River - South Africa 1871. The diamond is discovered and a terrible error made.
2: The Diamond Jousts - London and Monte Carlo, 1925. The diamond is now in a necklace presented by gambling ne'er-do-well Julius Hallam to his bride.
3: Diamond Cut Diamond - Notting Hill, 1991. The diamond is now the only part of the Hallam fortune left to Alice, whose recently deceased mother has hidden it from her.
(22-11-1997; Rpt) The Life Class (Unknown) Another chance to hear the performance for which Wendy Seager won the 1994 Sony Award for Best Radio Actress. Heather and Fraser meet for the first time outside school in the outpatients clinic of a hospital. Fraser is headed for Oxford and Heather's talent as an actor has already been hailed by critics. With Tom Smith and Wendy Seager. Director Hamish Wilson.
(29-11-1997; Rpt) Like That (Annie Caulfield) When two childhood friends are reunited, their friendship begins to crack under the strain of secrets and lies. Perhaps they never really knew each other at all. With Linus Roache, Lenny Henry and Adjoa Andoh. Director Sally Avens. Martha Burne, David MacFarlane and Ken James. Director Gregory J Sinclair.
(06-12-1997; Rpt) Paradise Radio (Dominic Power) When a musician and his market-trader wife accept an invitation to buy the stage costumes of a 70s pop legend, they become trapped in a Gothic underworld where both the living and the dead are too close for comfort. With Mick Ford, Kathryn Hunt and Brigit Forsyth. Director Michael Fox.
(13-12-1997; Rpt) For A Son (Carey Harrison) Comedy is set in 12th-century Spain. The King and Queen are desperate to produce a male son and heir, but all does not go quite according to plan... With Geoffrey Palmer, Philip Jackson, David Horovitch, Barbara Flynn and James Grout. Director Cherry Cookson.
(20-12-1997; Rpt) Turkey Time (Ben Travers, adap Martyn Read) The Stoatts have invited family and friends to Cobblers for Christmas. A visit from a formidable local landlady and the presence of some touring theatricals in the town threaten to make the festivities into something that no-one will ever forget. With Desmond Barrit, Michael Cochrane and Alex Jennings. Director Sue Wilson.
(27-12-1997; Rpt) Passport To Pimlico (T E B Clarke, adap John Peacock) When an unexploded bomb goes off, Arthur Pemberton discovers a crater full of ancient treasures and a document declaring that the residents of Pimlico are actually part of the Duchy of Burgundy. With George Cole, Diana Coupland and Louise Lombard. Director Celia de Wolff. (75m)
BOOK AT BEDTIME
10:45pm Weekdays; 15mins; Individual synopses where available.
(25-05 to 04-06-1997) A Month In The Country (J L Carr, read by Samuel West) Two shell-shocked survivors of the First World War, travel to a remote north country village to uncover personal mysteries. As they work through the hot summer month, the two men find some much-needed peace and tranquillity.
(05-06-1997) Ernest & Gwendolyn - An Old Fashioned Love Story (Jonathan Treitel, read by William Hope) A love affair starts in Greenwich Village. And it involves a couple of geckos.
(06-06-1997) Graffiti (Jonathan Treitel, read by david Horovitch) By the end of the century all the beauty spots of the world would be destroyed by the dreaded scribble. But then there was a remedy.
(09 to 20-06-1997) The Sandy Bottom Orchestra (Garrison Keillor & Jenny Lind Nilsson, abr Yvonne Antrobus, read by Barbara Barnes)
1: Small town America has never looked grimmer than through the eyes of Rachel Green, who is condemned to spend summer at home with her parents. Small compensation comes with the fact that her father is to steward the Fourth of July concert.
6: The Fourth of July concert is looming, and Rachel has been chosen to play in the orchestra.
(23-06 to 04-07-1997) The Monkey King (Timothy Mo, read by David Yip) The novel set in postwar Hong Kong, about the changing fortunes of the ambitious Wallace Nolasco.
1: Wallace agrees to an arranged marriage.
2: Wallace finds his treatment in the Poons' household unbearable and carefully plans his revenge.
3: Wallace's resistance to the family's harsh treatment earns him Mr Poon's grudging respect and the surprising offer of a job.
4: The new job exposes Wallace to bizarre friendships and well-managed corruption.
5: In a remote village, trapped between Communist territory and British, Wallace and his wife must build a new life in exile from the Poons.
6: Wallace is afraid that the villagers will blame him for a series of suspicious disasters.
7: Wallace realises that the uneasy peace between the Communists and the British is in real danger of collapse.
8: Wallace turns peacemaker when the villagers' long-time enemies declare war.
9: At last, Wallace and May Ling receive word that they can go home.
10: Wallace has money and power, but he is still uneasy.
(07 to 25-07-1997) Captain Corelli's Mandolin (Louis de Bernieres, abr Alison Joseph, read by Robert Powell) The epic tale of love, war and music on the dramatic island of Cephalonia.
(28-07 to 08-08-1997) Love On A Branch Line (John Hadfield, read by Michael Cochrane) A young disillusioned civil servant is sent to investigate a Whitehall embarrassment - an office set up 17 years earlier in East Anglia and then forgotten. His experience at Arcady Hall, home of the eccentric Lord Flamborough and his daughters, proves to be the most pleasurable time of his life.
(11 to 29-08-1997) Midnight's Children (Salman Rushdie, abr Pat McLoughlin, read by Roshan Seth)
1: The hero Saleem Sinai embarks upon the story of his life and lineage, handcuffed, as it is, to the story of the independent India herself.
6: Mary Pereria has swapped name tags on the two infants - one rich, one poor - both born on the stroke of midnight. Now the hero enters a life of privilege and renown as India's chosen Child of Midnight.
11: For the first time, Saleem uses his midnight gift as a weapon - to wreak revenge on two unfaithful women: Lila Sabarmarti and his own mother.
(01 to 12-09-1997) To The Lighthouse (Virginia Woolf, abr Yvonne Antrobus, read by Eileen Atkins) The 20th-century classic. Mr and Mrs Ramsay holiday with their family in the Hebrides.
(15 to 19-09-1997) Stories By Mark Twain (abr Duncan Minshull, read by Kelsey Grammer) Five tales by the master storyteller.
1: A Day At Niagara - A visit to the Falls reveals a modern-day theme park in all its glory.
2: The Facts In The Great Beef Contract - A piece of bureaucracy plays havoc with those involved...
3: Experience Of The MacWilliamses With Membraneous Croup.
4: A Ghost Story.
5: Cannibalism In The Cars.
(21-09 to 03-10-1997) Loitering With Intent (Muriel Spark, abr Neville Teller, read by Anna Massey). The comic novel.
1: Aspiring writer Fleur Talbot takes a secretarial job with a literary crank.
2: `My nanny was not actually evil,' murmured Sir Eric. `Oh, she was utterly evil,' said Mrs Wilks.
3: `Edwina looked regal, had no difficulty with her bladder, and only asked to be taken to the lavatory once.'
4: `Mrs Wilks has an obsession about sex. I don't believe she was raped by a Russian soldier.'
5: `Father Egbert Delaney thinks that Satan is a woman - I think he ought to be made to resign.'
6: `You have matrimonial prospects?' he asked. I went berserk.
7: `I thought of Sir Quentin stealing my book, not only the physical copies, but the very words, phrases, ideas.'
8: `The boy in the corner,' I said to Wally, `is called Gray Mauser.' This cheered Wally immensely.
9: `My husband and I had several things in common. One was expensive tastes and the other was no money.'
10: `I always hope the readers of my novels are of good quality. I wouldn't like to think of anyone cheap reading my books.'
(06 to 14-10-1997) Booker At Bedtime - Seven special Booker Prize programmes. Over the next six weekday nights, extracts from this year's shortlisted novels will be broadcast. The 1997 Booker Prize for Fiction will be awarded on the evening of Tuesday, 14th October. (NB: No readers are mentioned - was it the author?)
1: Quarantine (Jim Crace)
2: The Underground Man (Mick Jackson)
3: Grace Notes (Bernard MacLaverty)
4: Europa (Tim Parks)
5: The God Of Small Things (Arundhati Roy)
6: The Essence Of This (Madeline St John)
7: The last of seven Booker Prize programmes includes coverage of this year's awards ceremony from the Guildhall, plus a further extract from the winning novel.
(15 to 17-10-1997) The Story Of Mr Sommer (Patrick Suskind, trans Michael Hoffman, read by Alistair McGowan)
(20 to 24-10-1997) The Diving Bell & The Butterfly (Jean-Dominique Bauby, trans Jeremy Leggat, abr Brian Miller, read by Richard Derrington) Extracts from Bauby's best-selling memoir. In December 1995, Bauby suffered a massive stroke, leaving him paralysed and speechless, but he managed to `dictate' his story by blinking one eye.
(27-10 to 07-11-1997) Laughter In The Dark (Vladimir Nabokov, abr Neville Teller, read by David Horovitch) He was a rich, middle-aged businessman in 1930s Berlin. She was a poor but opportunistic beauty. Enough said?
(10 to 18-11-1997) The Clothes They Stood Up In (wri/read by Alan Bennett, abr Gillian Hush)
1: The Ransomes had been burgled - though burgled was the wrong word. Burglars select. There is a limit to what burglars can take. They seldom take easy chairs, for instance, and less often settees. These burglars did. They took everything.
2: After the epic burglary, Mrs Ransome goes shopping.
3: Burglary was the same as a death, Mrs Ransome thought: so much to-do to begin with, then afterwards, nothing.
4: The Ransomes take a trip into the unknown - in Aylesbury.
5: The Ransomes are reunited with their belongings, but the mystery of their disappearance remains.
6: A strange tape among their returned possessions surprises and fascinates the Ransomes.
7: Mrs Ransome meets a young man who solves the mystery.
(19 to 21-11-1997) A Simple Heart (Gustave Flaubert, trans Robert Baldick, abr Alison Joseph, read by Julian Barnes) The classic tale of a woman's life in 19th century Normandy.
(24-11 to 05-12-1997) Another Time, Another Place (Jessie Kesson, abr Brian McCabe, read by Vicki Masson) The account of an Aberdeenshire farm which takes on foreign workers in 1944. `The Italians are Here!'
(08 to 17-12-1997) Candide (Voltaire, trans John Butt, abr Andrew Simpson, read by Anton Lesser) The classic satire of the 1700s which follows the adventures of the hero and the beautiful Cunegonde.
(18 to 19-12-1997) Special Terms (Ronald Frame, unknown reader)
1: In 1950s Edinburgh, the Abercrombie House Hotel is a haven for `discerning' genteel types, but young Jamie soon begins to see the murkiness that lies beneath the politeness and the wholesome menu.
2: Young Jamie recalls a significant year at Abercrombie House Hotel.
(22 to 31-12-1997; Rpt) Playback (Raymond Chandler, abr Robert Dodds, read by Angus Macinnes) Ten-part adaptation. (NB: Some parts were marked as repeats, some not; Continued into 1998.)
1: Private eye Philip Marlowe is hired to tail a mysterious femme fatale.
2: `Don't call me baby, you cheap blackmailer.' `I may be a blackmailer, honey, but I'm certainly not cheap.'
3: `Don't get funny with me, buster. I get annoyed rather easy.' `Fine. Let's watch you get annoyed. What do you do - bite your moustache?'
4: `How far would you go for five grand, Marlowe?'
5: `Dear Betty, so sorry I couldn't stay dead. Will explain tomorrow. Larry.'
6: `Me and you could get along - if you had any brains.'
7: `It had been a long day. Perhaps if I had a rest and cleared my brain I might have some faint idea of what I was doing.'
THE LATE BOOK
12:30am Weekday Nights; 15mins; Individual synopses where available.
(02 to 20-06-1997) The Information (Martin Amis, abr Neville Teller, read by William Nighy) A comic misadventure set in the world of books, which spans west London and the United States.
(23 to 27-06-1997) Il Postino (Antonio Skarmeta, adap Julie Morrice, read by David Rintoul) The bittersweet novel which inspired the Oscar-nominated film.
1: When young Mario Jimenez gets a job as postman in his sleepy Chilean fishing village, he finds that his only client is the great poet Pablo Neruda. A friendship grows between them which changes both men's lives.
2: Mario seeks Neruda's help in wooing the glamorous Beatriz.
3: Allende is elected president, and Mario and Beatriz finally succumb to their mutual passion.
4: As Mario and friends celebrate Neruda's Nobel Prize, political turmoil breaks out across the country.
5: Mario pays a final visit to the poet's house, now barricaded by the military.
(30-06 to 11-07-1997) The Giant's House (Elizabeth McCracken, abr Elizabeth Bradbury, read by Lorelei King)
1: In Cape Cod in the 1950s, librarian Peggy Cort meets 11-year-old James Carlson Sweatt and begins a relationship that is to change the course of her life.
2: Peggy Cort knows few people in Brewsterville, so she is delighted when an invitation to join the Strickland family for ice cream turns to firm friendship.
3: No synopsis.
4: At 16, James Sweatt is a giant, over seven feet tall and still growing. When an accident lands him in hospital for months, Peggy is forced to admit that he will never be able to lead a normal life.
5: James comes home from hospital to find that his family and Peggy have built a giant's house for him to live in.
6: The giant's house has become a meeting place for the town's teenagers, and James has some hope that the curvaceous Stella might come to care for him - a thought that quite breaks Peggy's heart.
7: The children of Hyannis are invited to meet the world's tallest boy, and a specialist in giantism makes the trip from Chicago to add James to his collection.
8: James wants to see New York before he dies, and at over eight feet tall he feels the only way to do it is to join the circus.
9: No synopsis.
10: No synopsis.
(14 to 25-07-1997) The White Boy Shuffle (Paul Beatty, read by Ray Shell) The novel, set in the heart of America's urban street culture.
1: For Gunnar Kaufman, a change of location leads to a change of racial identity.
2: In the black street culture of Hillside, Gunnar feels conspicuously white.
3: Gunnar turns to the local high school as sanctuary from the violence on the streets.
4: Gunnar finally makes a friend, the brutal killer Psycho Loco.
5: Gunnar joins a gang and learns how to use a gun.
6: Gunnar becomes another victim of the LA riots.
7: No synopsis.
8: The media are ready to destroy Gunnar's best friend.
9: Gunnar has made a promise to the American people.
10: No synopsis.
(28-07 to 01-08-1997) The Changing Forest (Dennis Potter, abr Andrew Simpson, read by Robert Glenister)
1: The First Jukebox - In 1961, playwright Dennis Potter revisited his birthplace, the Forest of Dean, and found it in a state of profound uncertainty.
2: No Job For Life - For the coal-mining community of the Forest of Dean, pit closures in 1961 brought change of the most traumatic type.
3: Empty Pews - In 1961, the old chapel religion of the Forest of Dean was losing its grip on the community.
4: Out With The Old - In 1961 the Forest of Dean elders remembered the past, but the young people embraced the new.
5: A Time Of Tension - For some people change breeds insecurity, for others, opportunity. For the inhabitants of the Forest of Dean in 1961, it also brought tension.
(04 to 08-08-1997) Kitchen (Banana Yoshimoto, abr Penny Leicester, read by Emily Woof)
1: Love, longing and desire are cooked together to make a heady brew of emotions in this quirky story of a young woman obsessed by kitchens.
2: Mikage's story continues as she finds herself living with the Tanabes. This mother and son are certainly unconventional, but there is comfort to be found in their beautiful kitchen.
3: Unexpected tragedy comes to the Tanabe household, and Mikage's new-found relationship is strained to the limit.
4: Mikage's cooking has become accomplished, but she still feels alone as the person she loves remains distant.
5: Mikage is sent on a cooking trip and has to take drastic action to contact her lover - or is he just a friend?
(11 to 22-08-1997) Biggest Elvis (P F Kluge, abr Chris Wallis, read by Ron Berglas) To mark the anniversary of `the King's' death, the new novel about three Elvis impersonators working in the Philippines.
(25-08 to 05-09-1997) The Woman & The Ape (Peter Hoeg, trans Barbara Haveland, abr Penny Leicester, read by Helen Schlesinger)
1: The story begins with the arrival in London of a highly intelligent ape called Erasmus. But his freedom is soon to be sacrificed to the ambitions of a ruthless zoologist.
6: Madelene and Johnny have rescued the ape from her husband's laboratory. Meanwhile, Adam has reported the disappearance of both his wife and the ape to the authorities.
(08 to 21-09-1997) The Debt To Pleasure (John Lanchester, abr Stewart Conn, read by Tim Pigott-Smith) The memoirs and meditations of Tarquin Winot - gourmet, snob and man of letters manque. (NB: Not transmitted 11-09 or 18-09, but completed over the weekend in the usual Late Story slot.)
1: `To be born in the caul, as I was, is a traditional indication of good luck...'
2: `Scrutiny of one's fellow customers is one of the acknowledged pleasures of dining out...'
3: `I have only ever eaten dog once, in the course of an experimental and unrepeated visit to Macao...'
4: `The end-of-day drink functions as the point at which one exchanges personae...'
5: `Nothing of importance can be accomplished without planning...'
6: Tarquin Winot continues his reflections on food, art and his family history as he pursues a young honeymoon couple through the French countryside.
7: `Does the hunter always foresense his success...'
8: `Is there not a sense in which all honeymoons, by definition, mix business with pleasure...'
9: `Arson is perhaps the most liberal-minded of all violent crimes...'
10: `The two most important cultural figures in the modern world are the artist and the murderer...'
(22-09 to 07-10-1997; Rpt) Light In August (William Faulkner, abr John Hartley, read by Ed Bishop) To mark the one hundredth anniversary of Faulkner's birth, the author's novel of miscegenation and murder in his native Mississippi.
(08 to 21-10-1997; Rpt) The Drowned World (J G Ballard, abr Oliver Reynolds, read by Nicholas Farrell) After the polar ice caps melt, Dr Kerans and his team conduct research into effects on the climate. But the dangers of piracy are never far away.
(22 to 31-10-1997; Rpt) The Haunting Of Hill House (Shirley Jackson, abr Alison Joseph, read by Emma Fielding) A spinechilling Gothic horror for Hallowe'en.
1: Eleanor Vance falls under the malevolent spell of Hill House. Will she be able to resist its influence, or will the house claim her as yet another victim in its long history of terror and violence?
4: Hill House continues its terror campaign against Eleanor. Ghostly voices seem to be summoning her, and her name appears written in blood across a bedroom wall. She begins to fear for her sanity.
(03 to 14-11-1997; Rpt) Funny Boy (Shyam Selvadurai, read by Gary Pillai) Arjie, a young Tamil boy growing up in Sri Lanka in the 70s, prefers dressing up with the girls to perfecting his off-spin. His parents attempt to force the male world upon him, but as he grows up, he witnesses a series of emotional and political dramas that shape his response to his own dawning homosexuality and the growing racial tension around him.
(17 to 27-11-1997; Rpt) Bright Lights, Big City (Jay McInerney, read by Chris Eigeman) The classic tale of 1980s hedonism - Manhattan style. Nightclubs, chemical stimulants, the music of Talking Heads and the Cars. But what does it all mean?
(28-11-1997; Rpt) Hotel For The Holidays (Jay McInerney, read by William Hope) How not to have a family reunion at the St Regis Hotel.
(01 to 12-12-1997; Rpt) Metroland (wri/read by Julian Barnes, abr Georgina Brown) A vivid coming of age - from the land of bowler hats and pinstripe suits to laissez-faire Paris. And then back again!
(15 to 19-12-1997) Conversations With My Agent (Rob Long, read by Rob Morrow) The manic, mobile conversations between Rob Long and his sharp-talking agent expose the glittering superficiality of Hollywood's entertainment industry.
(22 to 26-12-1997) Christmastime At The End Of The Road (wri/read by Tom Bodett) Alaska's pre-eminent broadcaster tells stories of the Alaskan Christmas spirit and introduces characters from his books `The End Of The Road' and `The Big Garage On Clear'.
1: Emmitt's Arrival - A new town manager from Chicago appears in his city suit and shoes - just as the snow comes.
2: Argus & Emmitt - A cold December night, and two obstinate men are brought together when a fireball burns through a junkyard.
3: The Best Sauna Story So Far - An evening at a lakeside sauna in the Alaskan winter turns into farce for two couples.
4: The Town Tree - The town's first ever Christmas tree is a cue for seasonal conflict.
5: No information.
(29 to 31-12-1997; Rpt) Ghost Stories (M R James, read by Benjamin Whitrow) The first of five tales by the master of the macabre (NB: Reader is only listed on the first episode; Only Episode 3 is marked as a repeat; Continued into 1998.)
1: Canon Alberic's Scrapbook - A collector of antiquities encounters a hideous demonic figure in his hotel room. But did he really see it?
2: Lost Hearts - Who, or what, killed Mr Abney? And why was it so keen to expose his heart?
12:30am Saturday & Sunday Nights; 15mins; Individual synopses where available; Most entries are repeats from the weekday Short Story.
(01-06-1997) Bees (Kathy Page, read by Burn Gorman)
(07-06-1997) Price Of Fame (Michael Carson, read by Stephen Thorne)
(08-06-1997) Essex Dogs (D J Taylor, read by Chris Scott) A new story about three unlikely thieves.
(14-06-1997) Secret Lunches (wri/read by Angela Lambert) An unwholesome bargain is struck between a newly-married couple and the husband's manipulative employer.
(15-06-1997) The Red Jag (Ray French, read by Iestyn Jones) To the young boy, the red Jag signified success and prosperity - something to admire. To his father, it signified something else.
(21-06-1997) The Woman Who Married Clark Gable (Sean O'Faolain, read by Ger Ryan) A Dublin housewife becomes romantically inspired by the celebrated film star.
(22-06-1997) My Mother & Her Sisters (Jane Rogers, read by Joanna Monro) `Ever since my childhood, I'd made assumptions about my now elderly aunt, but had I ever really known her?'
(28-06-1997) Planet Love (Patricia Alderman, read by Robert Glenister) `Who is your ideal man?' William enquires. `Richard Branson, Andre Agassi and Martin Amis,' replies Antonia.
(29-06-1997) Dog Meat Dreams (Tom Bryan, read by Angus Macinnes) A man recalls the exploits of his great-grandfather's brother off the coast of Newfoundland last century - including the single-handed capture of a sea monster.
(05-07-1997) Chinese Season - Marvels Of A Floating City (Xi Xi, translated by Eva Hung, read by Su-Lin Looi) The wonders of the world's most astonishing city are fleetingly revealed.
(06-07-1997) Chinese Season - The English Secretary (David Wong, read by Dan Maxwell) An elderly Hong Kong businessman learns from his young secretary.
(12-07-1997) A Safe Pair of Hands (John F McNamara, read by Kerry Shale) In the office of the Middleville Times, editor Chips O'Schleigel is blurring fact and fiction, with dangerous consequences. A young reporter provides his final plot twist.
(13-07-1997) Virtual Reality (Dorothy Schwarz, read by Sion Probert) Every summer, at Honeybeare Hall, tourists enter the Time Tunnel and travel back centuries, for one weekend. But this year, they get stuck in 1597.
(19-07-1997) The French Collection - Augustine de Villeblanche (The Marquis de Sade, trans Edward Marielle, read by Charles Dance) A suitor goes to extraordinary lengths to win the woman of his dreams.
(20-07-1997) The French Collection - Morning Glories (Colette, trans Matthew Ward, read by Greta Scacchi) Valentine's lover prefers her to be adorned and made-up rather than naked and natural, leading to some frank observations from Colette on a woman's fixation with personal appearance.
(26-07-1997) Father and Son (Frank O'Connor, read by Ian McElhinney) A young man begins to understand the virtues of tenderness.
(27-07-1997) One Wednesday Afternoon (Stan Barstow, unknown reader) A man's existence is shaken to the core when he is called out of work because his wife has suffered a nasty accident.
(02-08-1997) The Deceivers (wri/read by Ludovic Kennedy) How flattering for a television presenter to go unrecognised yet still be desirable.
(03-08-1997) The House Next Door (Ros Muldowney, read by Hilary Neville)
(09-08-1997) Still Waters (Robert Harbinson, ead by Roma Tomelty) A summer outing triggers a personal crisis.
(10-08-1997) The Place Of Inbetween (Marilyn Dryden, read by Janet Dale) When recently divorced Laura decides to leave London and head for the solitude of an isolated seaside cottage, she embarks on the journey of her life.
(16-08-1997) The Indian Lauren Bacall (Leila Keys, read by Sudha Bhuchar) A Hindu girl and a Muslim girl become roommates at the start of medical college and find that their friendship deepens with time. However, when the dawn of partition breaks and Laurie is forced to leave India for a newly-formed Pakistan, her Hindu friend Nina cannot understand her coldness.
(17-08-1997) Getting Even (S H Vatsayan/Ajneya, read by Saeed Jaffrey) An old Sikh refugee finds he has nowhere to go after his village has been ravaged by partition. He makes a railway compartment into his home, and safely escorts lone passengers to their destinations.
(23-08-1997) An Actor's Tale - Big Fish (wri/read by Steven Berkoff) Harry gets a small part in a play. If he is to survive in the business, he has to make his performance memorable.
(24-08-1997) An Actor's Tale - Agent (wri/read by Steven Berkoff)
(30-08-1997) On The Fringe - Torquil Bristow's New Dawn (Patricia Hannah, read by Vivienne Dixon) Acid-dripping gossip on the disastrous wedding of a fashionable Scottish artist.
(31-08-1997) On The Fringe - Cameron Spooner's Ultimate Drapery (Iain Grant, read by Michael Mackenzie) A Scottish entertainer channels his love of bureaucracy into popular song.
(06-09-1997) Nightmare In The Dream Factory (Carol Hedges, read by Kerry Shale) A megastar remembers his tempestuous Hollywood career.
(07-09-1997) A Pain In The Neck (wri/read by Tracey Lloyd) `Marooned on the sofa, Alison looked enviously around the room. The party was impermeably French.'
(13-09-1997) Getting A Life (Alex Shearer, read by Brian Parr) When a person sees their life going the other way, on the back of a lorry, what can they do?
(14-09-1997) Covered Bridge & Autumn Splendour (wri/read by Christopher Hope) A musical love story set in London's Maida Vale.
(21 to 22-09-1997) No programme - continuation of the week's Late Book.
(27-09-1997) Dying For Love (Carol Shields, read by Buffy Davies) Three very different women think about life - and death - after rejection.
(28-09-1997) Tea In The Heather (Kate Roberts, trans Wyn Griffith, read by Caryl Parry Jones) Eight-year-olds Begw and Mair are off on an adventure - a picnic tea on the mountainside by themselves. Then local wild child Winni decides to tag along.
(04-10-1997; Rpt) Bald Patch (Daniel Davies, read by David Bannerman) `Simon looked at the man's head. Around his crown, the man's short sandy hair petered out into nothing more than a furry covering. Surely he didn't have a bald patch like that?'
(05-10-1997; Rpt) Blood & Water (Eilis Ni Dhuibhne, read by Stella McCusker) A sophisticated and intellectual woman begins to have feelings of guilt and embarrassment about neglecting her mentally retarded aunt.
(11-10-1997; Rpt) Now & Forever (Lana Citron, read by Anna Livia Ryan) A Dublin girl harbours an unrequited love for an egotistical young poet.
(12-10-1997; Rpt) The Stack (Rose Tremain, read by Jim Norton) John McCreedy is in a loveless marriage and living far from his Irish home. What will he do on his birthday?
(18-10-1997; Rpt) Blue Rabbit (David Self, read by Jo Brand) Arnos Grove writes children's books. His editor wants to cancel his contract because the books are just not PC. Blue Rabbit comes to the rescue!
(19-10-1997; Rpt) Every Word In The Book(Gee Williams, read by Kathryn Dimery) Mr Al Ghamdi receives a Christmas card of Cader Idris deep in snow, yet Wales is having its warmest winter on record. Will he see snow before he returns to Saudi Arabia?
(25-10-1997; Rpt) Poppy Seed & Sesame Rings (Elizabeth Jolley, read by Kerry Fox) A family of German immigrants in Australia finds it hard to settle. Mother longs for the bread of her homeland; her daughter dreams of belonging to the new country.
(26-10-1997; Rpt) Daddy's Girl (Mary Flanagan, read by Buffy Davis) She would test her father's endurance with every sort of boyfriend imaginable. Then there was Miles...
(01-11-1997; Rpt) A New Beginning (Richard Madelin, read by Philip Voss) Birthdays can be a difficult time. A darkly comic tale of one man's seventieth.
(02-11-1997; Rpt) Backstroke (Ruth Thomas, read by Sarah Collier) Muriel feels a mixture of irritation and guilt when she takes her overweight mother to a swimming session for the over-fifties.
(08-11-1997; Rpt) The Hunt (Carol Ann Frazer, read by Annette Crosbie) When young Hugh comes to stay for the weekend, he brings a whole new meaning to the fox hunting experience.
(09-11-1997; Rpt) Man Of His Times (Frank White, read by Stephen Thorne) A young man spends a quiet weekend with his friends and family before leaving to join his ship to fight in the war.
(15-11-1997; Rpt) The Land Girl (Diana Gardner, read by Eve Matheson) `Something stirs down in the countryside when a smart young woman helps out on the farm.'
(16-11-1997; Rpt) A March In Time (Brian Glanville, read by William Dufris) Toscanini is fiercely opposed to Fascism and refuses to conduct `Giovinezza'. But for how long can the great conductor continue to outwit Mussolini?
(22-11-1997; Rpt) Moonbeams & Aspirin (Kevin Canty, read by Stuart Milligan) Lockhart and Margaret are heading for divorce. But not before they have taken a holiday in Florida.
(23-11-1997; Rpt) Child Of Clay (Bernie Crosthwaite, read by Josie Lawrence) A schoolgirl makes a powerful sculpture which she is compelled to destroy. She starts again.
(29-11-1997; Rpt) From The Slips (wri/read by David Benedictus) A new story about a cricketer who decides to abandon the game and change his life.
(30-11-1997; Rpt) Father & Son (W A Harbinson, read by Oliver Maguire) A young boy must visit his mother's grave for the first time.
(06-12-1997; Rpt) Music From The Past (David T K Wong, read by Dan Maxwell) Rachel wanted to migrate to Israel. Kung had his sights on Taiwan. A story about two people separated by race, religion and ambition.
(07-12-1997; Rpt) Ash On Guavas (wri/read by Lawrence Scott) A new story about a Caribbean island threatened by a volcanic eruption.
(13-12-1997; Rpt) Frozen Words (Elizabeth Buchan, read by Mark Bonnar) A young man's trust in his mountain turns to tragedy when he takes the woman he loves to see it.
(14-12-1997; Rpt) Big For Wales (Rhidian Brook, read by Sion Probert) American couple Freddy and Ella pay a visit to Wales which highlights their opposing outlooks on life.
(20-12-1997; Rpt) Clap Hands, Here Comes Charlie (Beryl Bainbridge, read by June Barrie) Mrs Henderson's husband, Charlie, is not impressed by the panto tickets she is given by her employer instead of a Christmas box. `Peter Pan' at the Empire Theatre is not his idea of a treat, especially with his indigestion coming on again. (NB: Repeat from the week's Woman's Hour.)
(21-12-1997; Rpt) A Christmas Card To One & All (Penelope Lively, read by Brigit Forsyth) Lizzie, doting mother and loving wife - or living nightmare and busybody extraordinaire - sends festive greetings to one and all.
(27-12-1997; Rpt) The Happy Prince (Oscar Wilde, read by John Moffatt) A beautiful statue and a homeless swallow give everything of themselves for the happiness of others.
(28-12-1997; Rpt) The Remarkable Rocket (Oscar Wilde, read by John Moffatt) A very arrogant firework gets its comeuppance in a most undignified fashion.
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