Felicity Finch (Ruth Archer)
Toby’s still being laid-back about David and Rooooth’s reaction to Pip’s confession that she let the cattle escape, but Pip’s taken it more seriously and has bought Rooooth flowers for Easter by way of an apology. David seems to have calmed down (probably because he realised he was partly to blame), but Rooooth seems to have got the pip with Pip and is taking it really badly. Jill’s got the measure of the situation though, and thinks that Pip’s reticence to confess earlier may have something to do with Toby. After lunch she gets a reassuring hug from Jill as a sign that she’s not universally hated. She subtly gets Pip to admit it was a conversation with Toby that stopped her confessing straight away, but Pip defends him. She shouldn’t though, because he would have been more than happy to let her parents take the blame, as he makes clear when she catches up with him at The Bull.
We learn later that Elizabeth’s daughter Lily is going to be involved in Toby’s gin business. Exactly how, we’re not sure, but come on Toby is it wise to involve a 17 year old in your distilling business? That storyline could go seriously wrong in many directions.
Apparently David’s more upset about Pip not owning up straight away and is prepared to move on, but Rooooth needs time and space to think. Last time she felt like that she buggered off to the other side of the world for a month, but will she do that again? We can hope, but instead of buying her a one-way ticket on Air New Zealand, David tries to talk her round. However, in trying to defend Brookfield she said some terrible things about Bridge Farm in the heat of the moment, and can’t face seeing anyone.
Anisha’s back from Glasgow. We know this because she’s upset Peggy by calling her pet cat, Bill, obese. She only took him in to get his claws trimmed (I’m on my 7th cat and never felt the need to bother any of them with the nail clippers) and didn’t expect him to be insulted like that. Word soon gets round and Alistair’s not happy and fears losing all his small animal business and tells Anisha she needs to apologise to Peggy personally. At first Anisha doesn’t see the need as she was just being a responsible vet by pointing out the risk to Bill’s health. However, a gentle talking to by Alistair convinces her that she went to far and should apologise to Peggy.
At home farm, Jennifer notices something strange about Lilian’s mood and asks her if she’s been at the Sherry. Come on Jennifer, it would be strange if she hadn’t. Instead Lilian says that she’s just “drunk on life” and later, during a postprandial walk in the woods, confesses all. Matt’s return has made her realise how much better life with Justin would be than her disastrous relationship with Matt. Jennifer can see how happy her sister is and sounds genuinely pleased for her, the only question being when will she tell Mum?
The answer seems to be once she’s got a sodding great rock on her finger, and her and Justin waste no time driving to the jewellers (they’re very excited and at one point Lilian has to tell Justin to keep his hands on the wheel)! Later, they’re straight round to Peggy’s to tell her the news and show off the ring, and there’s a little sweetener for Peggy to help seal the deal – a brooch. It doesn’t stop her delivering a little pep-talk to both Justin and Lilian, but in the end Justin’s charm wins her over.
The happy couple choose The Bull for their engagement celebrations, despite it being the place where Lilian turned down Justin’s marriage proposal. The place is heaving as word has got around about everyone being welcome, and Justin has agreed to buy everyone 2 glasses of champagne each. Anisha turns up to apologise to Peggy and Alistair takes her over, saying that Peggy’s a pussycat really (as long as you buy her a diamond brooch eh Justin?). It goes well, after a sticky start, and Peggy even blames Christine for giving Bill too many treats.
Matt turns up and is soon all over Anisha like a case of ringworm. Rex spots this too and charges in with an unconvincing story about Anisha being needed outside to settle an argument about cricket. As she goes Matt tries to get her number, but we’re left in no doubt that she’s got the measure of him when she refers him to the surgery’s website. “I eat men like Matt Crawford on toast, for breakfast” she tells Rex.
Justin makes a speech and toasts Lilian, but as soon as he finishes gets a text from Miranda who has heard about the engagement. Somehow I don’t think Justin’s divorce from her is going to be that straightforward. By the way, where was Jazzer? It’s not like him to pass on free drinks at The Bull.
Meanwhile, to return to the world of farming for a moment, Josh is having more trouble with his farm machinery customers over Rex’s listings, although I don’t think it’s Rex’s fault – if Josh wasn’t on the phone all the time he could check things out with him. Rex tries to say this but Josh isn’t listening so Rex quits. Nice one Josh. Things aren’t made any better when he starts arguing with Pip about his part in the saga of the escaped cattle – being too busy to mend the fence after he first noticed it was damaged. It doesn’t take long for the calls to pile up and for Josh to realise his mistake and he goes back to Rex with his tail between his legs. To give him his due, he’s open and upfront about needing Rex’s help after all. Rex asks for and gets a proper apology and negotiates a guaranteed 2 days a week on £15 an hour.
OK, that’s enough about farming for this week. Elizabeth’s about to turn 50 and hopes it’s now too late for a mid life crisis (take it from me – it’s not). Apparently her affair with Roy didn’t count, so can we expect something spectacular and surprising from Elizabeth soon? Lily helps her get ready for her party and Elizabeth’s worrying about the rifts in the family, and should she have invited more people in order to make it less noticeable. Lily gives her aged mother a lesson in social media when she says that she’s invited Elizabeth’s Facebook friends, because she hasn’t seen some of them for years. “There’s probably a reason for that” exclaims a horrified Elizabeth.
At the party, Kenton heals one rift by apologising to Elizabeth for trying to cover up Freddie’s poor exam results, but the Brookfield contingent are either ignored completely (by Tony), subjected to ‘polite’ conversation (from Brian), or given very short shrift (by Tom). Terry Barford turns up with his Mother Christine, and is apparently one of Elizabeth’s ‘just because he’s a friend on Facebook doesn’t mean he’s an actual friend’ friends. As is Tim Beecham, one of Nigel’s old (real) friends. They turn out to be old flames too, and Tim for one tries to spark it up again.
Finally, some of the Archers are turning out to be strangers who just happen to share the same name, but Pip’s determined to find out why her mother’s not talking to her “however awful it is”. Rooooth doesn’t disappoint and gives her both barrels. “You’ve made a fool out of me”, “I don’t know who you are any more” before reloading and finishing her off with “I’m ashamed of you”.
Ouch. Over to you Pip.