Celia Nelson (Sharon Richards)
I had high hopes for Sharon – last week I implored her to stand firm and tell the Bridge Farm crowd to get lost and leave Rich alone. And indeed, when Helen does go to see her (following a logistics exercise and planning akin to the Apollo moon landings), Sharon appears to be standing firm, accusing Helen of patronising her (as if!) and asks her to leave.
Back home, Helen bursts into tears and tells Tom "it was our one chance and I've blown it." Ah well, never mind; what you've never had and all that. Pick yourself up and move on – how are the cheese sales going? And then what happens? Bloody Kylie and Eamonn get to work on Sharon (hereafter referred to as 'the invertebrate') and she backs down and tells Rich that Pat and Tony are his grandparents, the poor little sod.
Not only that, but she-with-no-backbone also says that Eamonn will bring Rich down to Bridge Farm on Sunday if they'd all like to see him. Would they? Do the Osmonds have teeth? Pat, Tony, Tom and Helen are jubilant, while the rest of us can only sob quietly at Sharon's betrayal of our trust and hopes.
Moving on, it was amusing how Vicky got her own back on Eddie and his scam concerning the installation of the water feature as his part in the Promises Auction. By siting it about two miles from the nearest electrical connection and making him put granite chippings all round it, she got an extra four hours' work out of him. Another Grundy scam that didn't quite make it.
Happily, Jim and Christine are the best of friends again, when he explains about his promise to Alan to pay someone a compliment each day and she realises that his remark about her alluring perfume was just a compliment and not an attempt to get into her pants. Friendship is sealed with a glass of lemonade and a piece of sponge.
There is optimism at Brookfield, when consultant Lisa tells David and Rooooth that their plan could show a profit in three years. David is even optimistic about getting a loan for the slurry tank. Tell you what Dave, why not tap up Lilian for it? After all, she lent Tony £10 K and, after looking at the figures, he and Pat would like to extend their interest-only mortgage period so that they can give Tom money to extend the polytunnels – presumably to stop him banging on about how they could be making a fortune, if only blah, blah, blah.
Tony, however, feels that they should first ask Lilian if she wants her money back. She is quite relaxed about it and says she's in no hurry. I'd like you for my bank manager, Lilian. Presumably Tom will soon be growing chillies, or kumquats, or God knows what, and no doubt they'll have "Tom Archer Brand" written on the side in felt tip.
Meanwhile, back at the mega-dairy project, Brian is becoming increasingly paranoid. Actually, Brian, it isn't paranoia, because everybody is out to get you; the protesters are still picketing the new market most days and Brian is disturbed by rumours that some farmers are thinking of defecting to another livestock market.
As if this weren't enough, in the BL Boardroom, Martin Gibson is getting twitchy about the project and Brian fears a Palace Coup. When Debbie rings Brian, he pours out all his troubles to her and fears that these problems are not going to blow over. "Leave it to me Dad, I'll sort it" is SuperDeb's response.
That was on Tuesday, and on Thursday, Debbie is in touch again. She says she has spoken to Martin (presumably along the lines of "I know where you live Gibson, and the route you take to work, so toe the line, or else") and she has had a great idea about the dairy.
And what is this boffo wheeze? Simple – instead of having hundreds of cows living an unnatural life in a giant Nissen hut and never seeing daylight, she suggests that they should instead have hundreds of pigs living an unnatural life in a giant Nissen hut and never seeing daylight. Brilliant! Why didn't they think of that earlier? Call me dense, but I can't help feeling that those who are protesting about the – so they say – inhumane conditions that the cows would suffer are not just going to turn round and say "oh, it's OK - they're only pigs". And as Brian said, it's still going to be a big shed.
Finally, it seems that we are in for a treat as the Green Burial Ground is set to receive its first inhabitant. Alan is worried that wicker coffins tend to creak, but then again it is radio. May I make a suggestion that the first inhabitant is Emma? I cringed at the efforts of Ed, George and Keira to make her Mother's Day special. Why bother? All she does is moan and whinge. And what did she do when Ed said he wished they had more money so that he could buy her an expensive present? Yup, she told him that she'd like to give up working at Lower Loxley. It's all for the sake of the kids, of course and you don't really need to eat every day, do you Ed?