20170827 (BBC7)

A single woman runs the bank in order to save it. Starring Penelope Wilton.

A tale of banks and bankers. A tale of credit and discredit. A woman who decides to run her own bank in Margaret Oliphant's high Victorian tale.

Starring Penelope Wilton as Margaret Oliphant, Adam Nagaitis as William, Jasmine Hyde as Lady Ellen Vernon, Philip Jackson as Mr Rule, Lyndsey Marshal as Hester Vernon and Ben Crowe as Harry Sellon.

Sometimes called 'the feminist Trollope', Oliphant is an unjustly-neglected British writer of the 19th century, famed for her perceptive, ironic psychology, and her strong female characters. And Hester has a striking premise: a young woman in a 19thcentury Cheshire town, having been snubbed and discarded in marriage, does something truly radical.

Using Oliphant's deliciously witty and sardonic narration, allied to a radical dramatisation by Kate Clanchy and Zena Forster, 'Hester' reveals a flawed and fascinating heroine, reborn for radio.

Harp played by Ruth Faber

Director: Jonquil Panting

First broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2013.