Skip to content

Classic Comedy: Fresh Fields – S02 5/06 – Business Contacts

11/07/2018

From Wikipedia

Hester and William Fields (McKenzie and Rodgers) are a devoted middle-aged, middle-class couple living an idyllic suburban lifestyle in Barnes, London. William works as an accountant while Hester is a housewife who works part-time in local restaurant Lucy’s Kitchen. The title’s meaning, and crux of the show, is that Hester combats empty-nest syndrome by livening up her life with new interests and hobbies, to the exasperation of her hard-working husband who just wants a quiet life. The show’s opening credits, featuring silhouettes of the characters, reflect this: Hester rides an exercise bike and plays a drumkit while William relaxes in a rocking chair.

The family home has an attached granny flat in which Hester’s mother Nancy (Fanny Rowe) lives following her divorce from Hester’s roguish father Guy (Ballard Berkeley); he often tries to win her back. (The pair finally remarry in the last episode.) Hester and William have two children of their own: the never-seen Tom who lives in New Zealand; and Emma, who is usually only heard (voice of Debby Cummings) telephoning her parents at inconvenient times. Emma’s husband Peter (Philip Bird) appears occasionally; Emma and Peter later present the Fields with their first grandchild Guy, named after his great-grandfather.

The Fields’ neighbour Sonia Barrett (played by Ann Beach) pops round in every episode to borrow items; these appearances would irritate William to comical effect. Sonia had the show’s only catchphrase: “It’s only Sonia!” she’d carol as she rapped at the Fields’ back door then let herself in. Sonia’s husband John (John Arthur) appeared occasionally, as did William’s secretary Miss Marigold Denham (Daphne Oxenford).

Fresh Fields ended in 1986 but three years later the series resumed as French Fields, which saw William and Hester relocating to France after William accepted a job there. There were three series of 19 episodes made between 5 September 1989 and 8 October 1991, all written by John T. Chapman and Ian Davidson. Philip Bird appeared as Peter in several episodes, with Emma finally seen on-screen, now played by Sally Baxter. Ann Beach made a guest appearance as Sonia in the final episode.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: