The Good Life. Image shows from L to R: Margo Leadbetter (Penelope Keith), Tom Good (Richard Briers), Jerry Leadbetter (Paul Eddington), Barbara Good (Felicity Kendal). Copyright: BBC.

The Good Life

BBC One sitcom about a couple practicing self-sufficiency. 30 episodes (4 series), 1975 - 1978. Stars Richard Briers, Felicity Kendal, Penelope Keith and Paul Eddington.

When I'm 65 is repeated on Gold on Sunday at 8pm.

Series 4, Episode 4 - The Weaver's Tale

Tom's latest plan is to buy a loom and that he and Barbara should begin producing their own cloth. By happy coincidence, it seems Margo has her heart set on a loom - but Jerry, with Barbara's encouragement, is keen to curtail her spending.

Further details

Tom enters the living room with £195 that the Goods have made from their soft fruit. Barbara quickly does the maths and realises that if they pay all the bills they will be left with the princely sum of....£10! Just then Margot pops round and ask for a favour in return Tom is able to snag a lift to Dorking.

While Margot ventures into an antique shop Tom goes off to buy his chicken feed. After making his purchase, he too finds a shop that he wants to have a look around. He spots a lomb and gets his haggling a bit wrong when his opening offer is more than the asking price but makes sure he gets free delivery to save his blushes.

Barbara is at home baking when Jerry walks into the kitchen. He has had a bad day and the knowledge that Margot is off shopping does not help his mood. It seems Margot's spending habits have been running riot in recent times and Barbara educates Jerry in the art of putting his foot down. Jerry is understandably nervous about the idea but Barbara is sure that Margot will respect him for it, admitting she respects Tom when he is firm but fair. He dissapears with a new found confidence.

After the lomb is delivered, Tom unveils it to Barbara. Barbara questions the practicality of it leaving Tom surprised by her lack of enthusiasm. This turns to anger however when she realises he spent the £10 they made without even asking her. She tells Tom about how she described him as firm but fair to Jerry just that afternoon and walks out.

Tom enters the kitchen sometime later. He siddles up to Barbara and admits that he was wrong. She hugs him but still admits the lomb is a terrible idea as they have no wool to work with. Every problem Barbara raises, Tom is quick to offer his solution. Finally Barbara thinks she has him when she says the wool would need to be spun and they dont own a spinning wheel. Tom smiles to himself before sharing the news of Margot's purchase earlier in the day. He tells Barbara that Jerry will sign the cheque tonight and tommorrow it will be next door. They will let Margot get bored of it and then pounce. Barbara goes white realising she has instructed Jerry to cut Margot off. As the two panic, Margot bursts in claiming she has left Jerry as he wouldn't buy her the spining wheel! Barbara offers Margot the guest room as Tom tries to get the talk back on the spining wheel.

The next morning the Goods discuss the Leadbetters over tea and hope they get back together. As they talk Jerry enters carrying the spinning wheel as a peace offering. Tom is thrilled but Barbara can't believe Jerry didn't stick to his guns. Jerry explains that he misses Margot who is a very good wife to him and he wants her to come back. As he wonders whether to leave a note for her to find on return she walks in to the kitchen. She ignores Jerry and tells the Goods she went out to get a job so that she can pay her way as her husband wont support her anymore. Jerry denies the implication and shows her the spinning wheel. Margot hugs him and apologises. As the two make up Tom pretends to have just had a brainwave and asks Margo if he could use the wheel to spin wool!

Broadcast details

Sunday 1st May 1977
30 minutes

Cast & crew

Regular cast
Richard Briers Tom Good
Felicity Kendal Barbara Good
Penelope Keith Margo Leadbetter
Paul Eddington Jerry Leadbetter
Guest cast
Milton Jones Ernie
Writing team
John Esmonde Writer
Bob Larbey Writer
Production team
John Howard Davies Director
John Howard Davies Producer

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