Clare In The Community. Copyright: BBC.

Clare In The Community

BBC Radio 4 sitcom about a social worker. 73 episodes (12 series), 2004 - 2019. Stars Sally Phillips, Alex Lowe, Nina Conti, Richard Lumsden and others.

Series 2, Episode 1 - Past Caring

Everyone goes out for Brian's birthday and Clare meets an old friend that she doesn't recognise. Simon and Helen go on a date and Ray is upset after losing his new holiday love.

Further details

It's Brian's birthday and Clare has given him a present of tracksuit bottoms. Brian realises there is a 'subtext' in the gift and thus Clare persuades him to go out jogging instead of being "a galumphing lardarse".

After a visit to a client's home, Clare is angry with Megan as she has broken what Clare calls the first rule of social work: that it is not your job to tell the client what to do and, also, not to get involved with them in an argument.

While out in the street Clare is approached by a woman and they have a good, long conversation. Clare hasn't a clue to who she is, but she seems to know about Clare and Brian. Clare tells the woman about Brian's party and how he would have liked to see her.

At the family centre, Irene and Helen are guessing that Brian is the father of Megan's child as she is not revealing who the dad is. Ray phones in to say he won't be in as he is chronically depressed by his holiday heartbreak, Carlos. Later on, Clare tells Brian of social economic and social standards and the celebration of vigilantly and Brian regrets taking her to see a Spiderman film. After the film, Clare remembered a fight between Spiderman and a mutant blob and she gets an idea to match-make Simon and Helen.

Later, Clare and her colleagues have to attend a one day workshop. The host breaks the ice with a joke: "Never assume, because it makes an 'ass' out of 'u' and 'me'". Clare immediately questions the joke, claiming that everyone may not be verbally, visually or literally capable of understanding the joke, that it may be considered sexual, and that it is attacking linguistic heritage. Clare's argument carries on until lunch and her colleagues skip the afternoon session.

Irene agrees to Ray that she would go to his 'holiday heartbreak showdown', but later regrets agreeing. Meanwhile Helen prepares for her date with Simon.

At Ray's slideshow, Irene accidentally knocks his box of slides on the floor and they get mixed up. The slideshow then becomes a morbid mixture of Carlos slides and Ray's mother and dog and their graves. Simon and Helen join Brian's birthday dinner at the restaurant. Unknowing to them, the woman that knew Clare earlier, Sally, arrives and joins too. Simon falls for her, and ends up ignoring Helen for the remainder of the evening. Brian is also clueless to who Helen is. However, when Sally reveals a unique laugh like a pig, Clare shouts 'snorthog', and thus remembers her as a student on the social work course. Back at Ray's, Irene has lost interest in the slides of Ray's mother's last Christmas at the hospice, and so has got drunk.

Broadcast details

Friday 4th November 2005
BBC Radio 4
30 minutes

Cast & crew

Regular cast
Sally Phillips Clare
Alex Lowe Brian
Nina Conti Megan
Richard Lumsden Ray
Gemma Craven Helen
Andrew Wincott Simon
Ellen Thomas Irene
Guest cast
Delroy Brown Alex
Vicki Pepperdine Sally
Writing team
Harry Venning Writer
David Ramsden Writer
Production team
Katie Tyrrell Producer

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