The Last Of England. Copyright: Sparklab Productions.

The Last Of England

BBC Radio 4 comedy drama inspired by a painting. 1 episode in 2021. Stars Anthony O'Donnell, Gary Lewis, Dan Gordon, George Bukhari and Faye McKeever.

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The Last Of England

Dark comedy drama inspired by the Ford Madox Brown painting of the same name

Comedy Drama
BBC Radio 4
Anthony O'Donnell, Gary Lewis, Dan Gordon, George Bukhari and Faye McKeever
Neil McKay
Melanie Harris

A darkly comic drama by BAFTA award-winning dramatist Neil McKay, with a title inspired by Ford Madox Brown's painting. Three 60-something friends argue passionately over the course of a ferry journey from Portsmouth to Santander, returning to their expat life in Spain after attending the UK funeral of their friend Ken, who went home for a visit and would never come back.

Hywel, a loquacious Welshman, Irishman Jim from Lurgan and pugnacious ex-MP Malcolm from Glasgow are unlikely allies (and enforced drinking pals) in the small Spanish town they now call home. Fuelled by some indifferent Rioja and cheap Spanish brandy, through the course of a night they try - and fail - to come to terms with life, death, truth and Brexit.

Also on the ferry are Ken's daughter Gemma and her partner Rashid, carrying the ashes of Ken, to scatter beneath an almond tree in his favourite spot near the village. But Gemma is furious with her father for abandoning his English family and falling for a bartender more than half his age. She's furious with her father's so-called friends for encouraging him. And she's quite cross with Rashid.

As the ferry heads for Spain and the sea gets rougher, secrets and motivations are revealed, showing nothing is quite as anyone believed and nobody is quite what they seem. Is home where you live, or where your heart is?

Production Details

Production company
Also known as
  • Drama: The Last Of England (Other official name)
Laugh track

Broadcast details

First broadcast
Saturday 5th June 2021 on BBC Radio 4 at 3pm
Episode length
1 hour