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To The Manor Born. Image shows from L to R: Audrey fforbes-Hamilton (Penelope Keith), Richard DeVere (Peter Bowles). Image credit: British Broadcasting Corporation.

To The Manor Born

Riches-to-rags-to-riches romantic tale of Audrey fforbes-Hamilton, forced to sell her beloved stately home to pay off her late husband's debts

Genre:
Sitcom
Broadcast:
1979 - 2007  (BBC One)
Episodes:
22 (3 series)
Starring:
Penelope Keith, Peter Bowles, Angela Thorne, Gerald Sim, John Rudling, Daphne Heard, Michael Bilton
Writers:
Peter Spence, Christopher Bond
Production:
British Broadcasting Corporation

Once wealthy Audrey fforbes-Hamilton is forced to sell her stately home to supermarket owner Richard DeVere. A millionaire of Czechoslovakian birth, DeVere has little idea of what is involved in living on, let alone running, a country estate. Audrey takes it upon herself to teach him 'nobility' whilst coming to terms with her own reduced status as his tenant.

As time passes, Richard is slowly trained up, but Audrey grows no more fond of her new-found position. When romance begins to blossom between the pair, it could be her best - and only - chance of getting back behind the front doors of Grantleigh.

Our Review: Thoroughly enjoyable and enduringly popular to this day, To The Manor Born presents a charming take on middle England, class clashes, country life, and - a golden theme in the 1980s - social mobility.

Coupled with strong, well-defined characters, a range of highly entertaining plots, and not to mention wonderfully funny scripts, it's no wonder that this sitcom remains so popular.