On Mardle Fen: Series 1-6: The Complete BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramas

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
June 2018
16 hours 5 minutes
Trevor Peacock (The Vicar of Dibley) stars as inspired chef Warwick Hedges, in this comedy drama set in an idiosyncratic restaurant in the Cambridgeshire Fens. Warwick’s son Jack works alongside his father, which makes him permanently anxious. They are assisted by Samuel, an earthy odd-job man 'who crawled out of the slime with the eels', and Zofia the Polish waitress.

Whether hosting unusual guests, dealing with flooding, fuelling father-son rivalry, or moving strange stones from the edge of the Fen to his restaurant 'at his own peril', Warwick certainly keeps Mardle Fen on its toes.

The mixture of food, family relationships and Fenland legend is handled with Nick Warburton's characteristic deft comic touch.

Warwick Hedges.....Trevor Peacock
Jack Hedges.....Sam Dale
Zofia.....Helen Longworth
Samuel.....John Rowe
Marcia Hedges.....Kate Buffery

Other parts played by Chris Pavlo, Liza Sadovy, Christine Kavanagh, Liz Sutherland, Lizzy Watts, Victoria Inez Hardy, Malcolm Tierney, Paul Rider, Lauren Mote, Claire Rushbrook, Tony Bell, Adam Billington, Ben Crowe, Tilly Tremayne, Paul Bazely and Gyles Brandreth.

Produced and directed by Claire Grove.
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Simon O.

I first heard this when it was originally broadcast (the first 4 episodes I think) then lost track of the series as it aired. I’d forgotten how brilliant this radio drama is. What’s astounding to me is not just the quality of the writing, direction, production and acting, but the fact that this level of excellence doesn’t falter over so many hours of material. Most of my favourite radio comedy/drama is naturally, relatively compact ‘High Table Lower Orders’ is a good example. This though, maintains the quality of drama and has writing that is consistently of the quality of more celebrated work. Some scenes verge on the beautiful - moving, and perfectly poignant without sentimentality - while Warburton has done what few great writers have done- created a world which is close enough to reality for comfort, (but under woven with the ancient lore of rural England) which is unique. By the way - anything directed/produced by Claire Grove will always be good and often great.

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