Episodes

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01Pilot2014052920180722 (BBC7)
20180723 (BBC7)
Every year thousands of tourists flock to the Lake District. But one place they never go to is Plum House - the former country house of minor 18th century poet George Pudding. Now a crumbling museum, it struggles to stay open under its eccentric curator, Peter Knight.

Eager young museum administrator Tom Collyer arrives determined to turn the place round, but finds the incompetent staff very resistant to the C-Word - change. A new comedy written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna.

Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Directed by Paul Schlesinger

Producer: Sarah Cartwright
A Hat Trick production for BBC Radio 4.

An eager museum curator arrives to turn things around, but finds the incompetent staff.

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

0101Why Why Wi?2016061520180830 (BBC7)
20180831 (BBC7)
20200720 (BBC7)
20200721 (BBC7)
20200725 (BBC7)
20180823 (R4)
Comedy about the inept staff at an historic house. Starring Simon Callow and Jane Horrocks.

Every year, thousands of tourists flock to the Lake District. But one place they never go to is Plum House - the former country home of terrible poet George Pudding (1779-1848). Now a crumbling museum, losing money hand over fist, it struggles to stay open under its eccentric curator Peter Knight (Simon Callow).

Can anyone save Plum House from irreversible decline?

Tom Collyer, sent from the Trust to do just that, seems to be the most likely candidate but the challenge is huge as he confronts the reality of winning round Peter Knight's handpicked team - the hopelessly out of touch deputy Julian (Miles Jupp), the corner-cutting gift shop manager Maureen (Jane Horrocks) intent on making profit from extremely cheap plum-themed merchandise, and maintenance man Alan (Pearce Quigley) who has heard the words "health" and "safety" but never in the same sentence.

In this opening episode, the museum's preparations for the annual WI visit include hiding away valuable artefacts as, according to Peter, some members are prone to stealing them. And Julian gives a disastrous lecture on the life and work of George Pudding.

Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna

Peter.... Simon Callow
Maureen.... Jane Horrocks
Julian.... Miles Jupp
Tom.... Tom Bell
Alan.... Pearce Quigley
Emma.... Louise Ford
Mary.... Kate Anthony
Jean.... Sandra Maitland

Directed and Produced by Paul Schlesinger

A Hat Trick production for BBC Radio 4 first broadcast in June 2016.

The museum's preparations for the annual WI visit include hiding away valuable artefacts.

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Directed and Produced by Paul Schlesinger
A Hat Trick production for BBC Radio 4.

0102Perilously Poorly Peter2016062220180906 (BBC7)
20180907 (BBC7)
20200727 (BBC7)
20200728 (BBC7)
20180830 (R4)
Comedy about the inept staff at an historic house starring Simon Callow and Miles Jupp.

Every year thousands of tourists flock to the Lake District. But one place they never go to is Plum House - the former country home of terrible poet George Pudding (1779-1848). Now a crumbling museum, losing money hand over fist, it struggles to stay open under its eccentric curator Peter Knight (Simon Callow).

In this episode, Peter is forced to visit town, somewhere he hasn't been since Woolworths closed down, for a medical emergency. He leaves his hopelessly out-of-touch deputy Julian (Miles Jupp) in charge who sees it as a perfect opportunity for him to finally make his mark on the place by, amongst other things, establishing his cafe Chez Julian, a hangout for 'Cumbrian Jean Paul Sartres'.

Written by Ben Cottam and Paul Mckenna
Directed and Produced by Paul Schlesinger
A Hat Trick production for BBC Radio 4.

Peter is forced to visit town, leaving his hopelessly out-of-touch deputy Julian in charge

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

He leaves his hopelessly out-of-touch deputy Julian in charge who sees it as a perfect opportunity for him to finally make his mark on the place by, amongst other things, establishing his cafe Chez Julian, a hangout for 'Cumbrian Jean Paul Sartres'.

Ben Cottam and Paul Mckenna's comedy about the inept staff at an historic house starring Simon Callow and Miles Jupp.

Every year thousands of tourists flock to the Lake District. But one place they never go to is Plum House - the former country home of terrible poet George Pudding (1779-1848). Now a crumbling museum, losing money hand over fist, it struggles to stay open under its eccentric curator Peter Knight.

Peter.... Simon Callow
Maureen.... Jane Horrocks
Julian.... Miles Jupp
Tom.... Tom Bell
Alan.... Pearce Quigley
Emma.... Louise Ford
Mary.... Kate Anthony
Jean.... Sandra Maitland

A Hat Trick production for BBC Radio 4 first broadcast in June 2016.

0103Trust The Trust2016062920180913 (BBC7)
20180914 (BBC7)
20200803 (BBC7)
20200804 (BBC7)
20180906 (R4)
Comedy about the inept staff at a historic house, starring Simon Callow and Jane Horrocks.

Every year thousands of tourists flock to the Lake District. But one place they never go to is Plum House - the former country home of terrible poet George Pudding (1779-1848). Now a crumbling museum, losing money hand over fist, it struggles to stay open under it's eccentric curator Peter Knight (Simon Callow).

Can anyone save Plum House from irreversible decline?

In this episode, a mysterious visitor arrives. Being visited is an unusual event in itself, but when he shows genuine interest in how the place is run our team immediately suspect he has been sent from the Trust to spy on them. Why else would a man, on his own, turn up at a museum unannounced?

The cast is joined by Kevin Eldon who guest stars as the visiting man of mystery.

Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Directed and Produced by Paul Schlesinger
A Hat Trick production for BBC Radio 4.

The team suspect that a mysterious visitor has been sent by the Trust to spy on them.

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

0104Peter Vs Prynne2016070620180920 (BBC7)
20180921 (BBC7)
20200810 (BBC7)
20200811 (BBC7)
20180913 (R4)
Tom has organised a special summer event, but will it be remembered for the right reasons?

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

Comedy about the inept staff at a historic house, starring Simon Callow, Miles Jupp and Jane Horrocks.

Every year thousands of tourists flock to the Lake District. But one place they never go to is Plum House - the former country home of terrible poet George Pudding (1779-1848). Now a crumbling museum, losing money hand over fist, it struggles to stay open under its eccentric curator Peter Knight (Simon Callow).

Can anyone save Plum House from irreversible decline?

In this episode, Tom has organised a special summer event and invited the great and good from the world of George Pudding scholarship to gather round the museum's celebrated plum tree. It's bound to be a day to remember. But with Peter encountering his arch nemesis - the unbearably pompous Mungo Prynne (Roger Allam), Julian upsetting a neighbouring farmer and Emma rather enjoying the plum punch, will it be remembered for the right reasons?

Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Directed and Produced by Paul Schlesinger
A Hat Trick production for BBC Radio 4.

0105The Rather Risky Ramble2016071320180927 (BBC7)
20180928 (BBC7)
20200817 (BBC7)
20200818 (BBC7)
20180920 (R4)
Tom returns from a team building course in London to find the Plum House team have been bickering in his absence. So he decides to put what he has learned into action.

Peter has a better idea to restore team spirit and suggests the museum's staff go on a walk through the Cumbrian countryside, known as Pudding's Horseshoe. Hiking boots on, the group set off on their ramble on a beautiful sunny day, full of enthusiasm and Kendal Mint Cake.

What can possibly go wrong?

Every year thousands of tourists flock to the Lake District. But one place they never go to is Plum House - the former country home of terrible poet George Pudding (1779-1848). Now a crumbling museum, losing money hand over fist, it struggles to stay open under its eccentric curator Peter Knight (Simon Callow).

Can anyone save Plum House from irreversible decline?

Peter.... Simon Callow
Maureen.... Jane Horrocks
Julian.... Miles Jupp
Tom.... Tom Bell
Alan.... Pearce Quigley
Emma.... Louise Ford

Directed and Produced by Paul Schlesinger

Tom returns from a team building course to find the Plum House team have been bickering.

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

In this episode, Tom returns from a team building course in London to find the Plum House team have been bickering in his absence. So he decides to put what he has learned into action. Peter has a better idea to restore team spirit and suggests the museum's staff go on a walk through the Cumbrian countryside, known as Pudding's Horseshoe. Hiking boots on, the group set off on their ramble on a beautiful sunny day, full of enthusiasm and Kendal Mint Cake. What can possibly go wrong?

Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Directed and Produced by Paul Schlesinger
A Hat Trick production for BBC Radio 4.

0106 LASTLights, Camera, Pudding2016072020181004 (BBC7)
20181005 (BBC7)
20200824 (BBC7)
20200825 (BBC7)
20180927 (R4)
Comedy about the inept staff at a historic house, starring Simon Callow, Miles Jupp and Jane Horrocks.

Every year thousands of tourists flock to the Lake District. But one place they never go to is Plum House - the former country home of terrible poet George Pudding (1779-1848). Now a crumbling museum, losing money hand over fist, it struggles to stay open under it's eccentric curator Peter Knight (Simon Callow).

Can anyone save Plum House from irreversible decline?

In this episode, the team at the museum are startled to hear that Peter has agreed to Plum House being used as a location in a period drama. And not just any period drama, but Buttermere Hall - the Cumbrian Poldark, the Lake District Downton Abbey - which just happens to be Maureen and Emma's favourite Sunday night series. It could be a massive publicity coup for Plum House, but with Peter dreaming of a starring role, Maureen insisting on catering for the crew, Alan fretting about his broken spade and Emma desperate to meet leading man Christopher Tennyson, will the team end up blowing it?

Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Script Edited by Sarah Cartwright
Directed and Produced by Paul Schlesinger
A Hat Trick production for BBC Radio 4.

Peter agrees to Plum House being used as a location in a period drama.

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

0201A Sound Investment20180530Comedy about the inept staff at a historic house. Starring Simon Callow, Jane Horrocks and Miles Jupp.

Every year, thousands of tourists flock to the Lake District. But one place they never go to is Plum House - the former country home of terrible poet George Pudding (1779-1848). Now a crumbling museum, losing money hand over fist, it struggles to stay open under its eccentric curator Peter Knight (Simon Callow). Tom Collyer (Tom Bell) tries and fails to get the museum back on track, alongside the hopelessly out of touch deputy Julian (Miles Jupp), corner-cutting gift shop manager Maureen (Jane Horrocks), put-upon education officer Emma (Louise Ford), and enthusiastic but dim-witted caretaker Alan (Pearce Quigley).

In the first episode of the new series, the team are making an audio tour they hope will bring visitors flocking. But they can't agree on who will star in the recording, and Tom has a bigger problem when he accidentally breaks the most valuable artefact in the museum.

Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Produced by Sarah Cartwright
Directed by Paul Schlesinger
A Hat Trick production for BBC Radio 4.

Comedy about the inept staff at a historic house. Starring Simon Callow and Jane Horrocks.

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

0202Thief Encounter20180606Comedy about the inept staff at a historic house. Starring Simon Callow, Jane Horrocks and Miles Jupp.

Every year, thousands of tourists flock to the Lake District. But one place they never go to is Plum House - the former country home of terrible poet George Pudding (1779-1848). Now a crumbling museum, losing money hand over fist, it struggles to stay open under its eccentric curator Peter Knight (Simon Callow). Tom Collyer (Tom Bell) tries and fails to get the museum back on track, alongside the hopelessly out of touch deputy Julian (Miles Jupp), corner-cutting gift shop manager Maureen (Jane Horrocks), put-upon education officer Emma (Louise Ford), and enthusiastic but dim-witted caretaker Alan (Pearce Quigley).

Peter and Julian are determined to retrieve a valuable pudding artefact and they've enlisted the help of a crooked connection to do so. Emma and Tom try to keep everyone on the straight and narrow - but Maureen finds herself mysteriously drawn to the shady visitor.

Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Produced by Sarah Cartwright
Directed by Paul Schlesinger
A Hat Trick production for BBC Radio 4.

Peter and Julian engage a crooked connection to retrieve a valuable pudding artefact.

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

0203Black Pudding20180613Comedy about the inept staff at a historic house, starring Simon Callow, Jane Horricks and Miles Jupp.

Every year, thousands of tourists flock to the Lake District. But one place they never gois Plum House - the former country home of terrible poet George Pudding (1779-1848). Now a crumbling museum, losing money hand over fist, it struggles to stay open under its eccentric curator Peter Knight (Simon Callow). Tom Collyer (Tom Bell) tries and fails to get the museum back on track, alongside the hopelessly out of touch deputy Julian (Miles Jupp), corner-cutting gift shop manager Maureen (Jane Horrocks), put-upon education officer Emma (Louise Ford), and enthusiastic but dim-witted caretaker Alan (Pearce Quigley).

In this episode, the offer of an honorary degree at a less than prestigious ex-polytechnic sends Peter into a depressive spiral, as he questions whether he has wasted his life. The team call on the chief psychiatrist to the academic profession, the radical Doctor Bloch.

The cast is joined by Steve Pemberton who guest stars as Doctor Bloch.

Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Produced by Sarah Cartwright
Directed by Paul Schlesinger
A Hat Trick production for BBC Radio 4.

The offer of an honorary degree at an ex-polytechnic sends Peter into a depressive spiral.

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

0204Death Comes To Plum House20180620Comedy about the inept staff at a historic house, starring Simon Callow, Jane Horrocks and Miles Jupp.

Every year, thousands of tourists flock to the Lake District. But one place they never go is Plum House - the former country home of terrible poet George Pudding (1779-1848). Now a crumbling museum, losing money hand over fist, it struggles to stay open under its eccentric curator Peter Knight (Simon Callow). Tom Collyer (Tom Bell) tries and fails to get the museum back on track, alongside the hopelessly out of touch deputy Julian (Miles Jupp), corner-cutting gift shop manager Maureen (Jane Horrocks), put-upon education officer Emma (Louise Ford), and enthusiastic but dim-witted caretaker Alan (Pearce Quigley).

In this episode, Tom has organised a Murder Mystery event at Plum House. But when a storm prevents the visitors from reaching the museum, the team decide to try the game themselves. Maureen is determined to prove the murderer is Julian, while Peter is carried away with his new person - but a bloodcurdling scream from Alan means the team have a real mystery to solve.

Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Produced by Sarah Cartwright
Directed by Paul Schlesinger
A Hat Trick production for BBC Radio 4.

Tom organises a murder mystery event at Plum House. With Simon Callow and Miles Jupp.

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

0205Hot Quiz20180627Comedy about the inept staff at a historic house, starring Simon Callow, Jane Horrocks and Miles Jupp.

Every year, thousands of tourists flock to the Lake District. But one place they never go is Plum House - the former country home of terrible poet George Pudding (1779-1848). Now a crumbling museum, losing money hand over fist, it struggles to stay open under its eccentric curator Peter Knight (Simon Callow). Tom Collyer (Tom Bell) tries and fails to get the museum back on track, alongside the hopelessly out of touch deputy Julian (Miles Jupp), corner-cutting gift shop manager Maureen (Jane Horrocks), put-upon education officer Emma (Louise Ford), and enthusiastic but dim-witted caretaker Alan (Pearce Quigley).

This week, after their latest madcap scheme proves a disaster, Tom decides that Peter and Julian should no longer be in charge of the finances. He soon discovers that each staff member thinks they are most suited for the role, and a local pub quiz becomes the arena to decide who is best and smartest at Plum House. The competition reignites old tensions and turns the team on each other. But Tom is distracted by his feelings for Emma.

The cast is joined by Graham Fellows who guest stars as Ken the quizmaster.

Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Produced by Sarah Cartwright
Directed by Paul Schlesinger
A Hat Trick production for BBC Radio 4.

Tom organises a murder mystery event at Plum House. With Simon Callow and Miles Jupp.

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

0206 LASTWedding Bells20180704Comedy about the inept staff at a historic house.

Every year, thousands of tourists flock to the Lake District. But one place they never go is Plum House - the former country home of terrible poet George Pudding (1779-1848).

Now a crumbling museum, losing money hand over fist, it struggles to stay open under its eccentric curator Peter Knight (Simon Callow). Tom Collyer (Tom Bell) tries and fails to get the museum back on track, alongside the hopelessly out of touch deputy Julian (Miles Jupp), corner-cutting gift shop manager Maureen (Jane Horrocks), put-upon education officer Emma (Louise Ford), and enthusiastic but dim-witted caretaker Alan (Pearce Quigley).

This week, the team are preparing to host their first wedding at the museum. With a journalist coming to cover the event, it's a publicity coup for Plum House. But the groom has cold feet. Can they carry on regardless with a fake wedding? Tom is dubious - until Julian suggests he might pretend to marry Emma.

Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Produced by Sarah Cartwright
Directed by Paul Schlesinger
A Hat Trick production for BBC Radio 4.

The team prepare to host their first wedding at the museum. But the groom has cold feet.

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

0301Better The Devil20200401The third series of Plum House returns, with the eccentric team who run the museum putting manager Tom on leave to recover from his heart ache over former colleague Emma. Little do they know however what's in store for them as Head Office send over Roger, the trouble shooter's trouble shooter, to act as a new broom and bring Plum House into line.

Plum House features Simon Callow, Jane Horrocks, Miles Jupp, Pearce Quigley and Tom Bell.
Guest starring this week; Pip Torrens, Alex Lowe
Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Directed by Paul Schlesinger
Produced by Claire Broughton

It is a BBC Studios Production for Radio 4

The third series of Plum House returns, following the staff at a country house museum.

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

0302#so British20200408Plum House's curator Peter Knight (Simon Callow) finds unlikely TV fame, whilst being featured on an ancestry show helping celebrity guest Derren Brown trace his roots to the museum. When Peter's most eccentric foibles are broadcast to millions, manager Tom and the team fear a backlash, but instead the audience take Peter to their hearts - his appearance goes viral #SOBRITISH and suddenly Plum House visitor numbers shoot up. How will the team handle the new business and will Peter be able to keep his head, even if Julian has selflessly put himself forward as his manager?

Plum House features Simon Callow, Jane Horrocks, Miles Jupp, Pearce Quigley, Tom Bell and Louise Ford.
Guest starring this week; Emma Denly, Alex Lowe
Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Directed by Paul Schlesinger
Produced by Claire Broughton

It is a BBC Studios Production for Radio 4

Curator Peter Knight has his 15 minutes of fame, and thrusts Plum House into the spotlight

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

0303A Knight To Remember20200415Plum House has once again been invited to the Museum of the Year awards in London. Manager Tom is determined that he and Peter attend as the house has been nominated, despite the rest of the team thinking it's a waste of time.

While Tom and Peter are away, Julian is left in charge and much to Alan and Maureen's consternation decides that now's the time for him to raise his social media game by posing in a suit of armour. Meanwhile Tom's chance meeting with old colleague Emma at the awards stirs up old feelings...

Plum House features Simon Callow, Jane Horrocks, Miles Jupp, Pearce Quigley, Tom Bell and Louise Ford.
Guest starring this week: Alex Lowe
Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Directed by Paul Schlesinger
Produced by Claire Broughton

It is a BBC Studios Production for Radio 4

Plum House is up for a prestigious award in London, so it's off to the big smoke.

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

0304Grace And Favour20200422This week, manager Tom hopes to earn some much needed funds for the museum by renting out Peter's grace and favour apartment - that's if Julian has remembered to tell Peter to move out. Meanwhile the museum also welcomes a French artist to paint a picture of the property. Julian sees her as a potential love interest but it turns out she has eyes only for Tom, much to his initial indifference. When Tom finally relents to her advances however his timing couldn't be more off...

Plum House features Simon Callow, Jane Horrocks, Miles Jupp, Pearce Quigley, Tom Bell and Louise Ford.
Guests this episode: Celeste Dring, Jason Forbes and Jade Ogugua
Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Directed by Paul Schlesinger
Produced by Claire Broughton

It is a BBC Studios Production for Radio 4

Manager Tom rents out Peter's flat at the museum, and unexpectedly, love is in the air.

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

0305All In Good Faith20200429The third series of Plum House returns and the team welcome a new vicar to their parish (played by Robert Bathurst). Peter is his biggest fan, but the others have varying levels of interest. Maureen and Alan try in their own way to help with church repairs and maintenance, to disastrous effect, and Julian is mainly miffed that Peter's found a new best friend. Tom meanwhile is still trying to patch things up with Emma...

Plum House features Simon Callow, Jane Horrocks, Miles Jupp, Pearce Quigley, Tom Bell and Louise Ford.
Guest starring Robert Bathurst and Alex Lowe

Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Directed by Paul Schlesinger
Produced by Claire Broughton

It is a BBC Studios Production for Radio 4

A new vicar comes to the local parish much to Peter's delight.

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

0306 LASTFete And Fortune20200506Plum House hosts the annual summer fete, and Maureen's old rival Sue makes an appearance.

Comedy about the eccentric and inept staff at a historic house.

The third series of Plum House concludes with the annual summer fete in the grounds of Plum House itself. Mayor Gerry is minded to move the fete to a different location if this year's festivities are the disaster they were last year so everyone is told to be on best behaviour. Unfortunately this doesn't allow for the arrival of Maureen's old nemesis Sue at the fete as their annual rivalry is once again reignited. Meanwhile Emma is still mad at Tom for his deception over her contract. Will the team manage to keep up appearances to the Mayor throughout the day, and will Sue and Maureen manage to maintain civil relations...

Plum House features Simon Callow, Jane Horrocks, Miles Jupp, Pearce Quigley, Tom Bell and Louise Ford.
This episode features special guests Miranda Richardson and Alex Lowe

Written by Ben Cottam and Paul McKenna
Directed by Paul Schlesinger
Produced by Claire Broughton

It is a BBC Studios Production for Radio 4