Greg and Jenny Episode Title Charles Vaughan


"Welcome to Whitecross" - Charles



Greg is travelling to Whitecross to trade some goods. Upon arrival he meets a woman
called Pet.

Greg on his way to Whitecross

Greg tells her that he has come to trade cured animal skins for wheat as theirs went bad. She
is sure something can be arranged. He knows that Charles Vaughan lives at Whitecross and
asks to see him. Pet calls out to Charles and whilst they wait, Greg tells her about the
settlement at the Grange which he thinks is doing well. Pet shows him the charcoal they have
made which heats the stove.

Greg and Pet

Charles arrives and welcomes Greg warmly. He asks after Abby and Jenny. Greg explains that
Abby left their settlement to look for her son, Peter, and has not returned and that Jenny is well.
He goes on to ask after Ruth, who they sent on to Charles at Maredell to help with the births of
Lorraine and Isla's babies. Charles relates that one of the babies was still-born and the other
survived and that both Lorraine and Isla left the settlement soon afterwards. Ruth apparently
moved on to a place called St. Mary's to treat someone who had a bad fall. Greg reveals that
he wants to locate Ruth as Jenny is pregnant and the baby is due soon.

Reunion

Back at the Grange, Jenny is reading a book on pregnancy. Nearby, John and Lizzie are
fast asleep. Paul checks on them and John wakes. After saying goodnight he goes to see
Jenny. They discuss John and Lizzie and how they adopted her and Greg as their parents.
She is worried about the birth. Paul tells her he is restless as he wants to find a woman.
She tells him that Ruth liked him and he is surprised. She also insists that Greg needs him
to stay.

Jenny reads book

At Whitecross, Greg is taking to Charles about Abby. He misses her but not the tension that
existed between them. Charles thinks that the times they are living in means there is a
natural distinction between the leaders and the led. He asks Greg to stay tomorrow to look
at the wind pump. Greg tells him about his ideas for a telephone system. They discover
that both settlements use mutton fat to burn in their lanterns.



Back at the Grange, Lizzie wakes up because she can smell smoke. She wakes John and
they begin to cry for help. Paul and Jenny hear their cries and try to go to them but soon
realise that the whole building is on fire. Jenny runs outside and screams 'firrrre!' to alert
the others. Wheelchair bound Vic appears to be trapped in his room.


Ablaze Firrrrre!

The next morning, Greg prepares to leave Whitecross. He asks them to visit any time and
promises to return at some point. Greg receives a particularly welcome goodbye kiss from
Pet.



After Greg has gone, Pet quizzes Charles as to why he let him go, as he had recently
talked of expansion and persuading visitors to stay at Whitecross. Charles replies that
Greg is his own boss and wouldn't want to merely follow him.



A few days later, the survivors of the blaze are gathered together in a freezing cold
barn waiting for help. Arthur who is walking about outside sees Greg and tells him
that the house has burned down, but that Jenny is okay. He boards the cart and they
set off to the barn at great speed.


Greg's return

Greg is reunited with a relieved Jenny and the children, all of whom he hugs tightly. John
and Lizzie tell him that they have been living on raw carrots and turnips and that they
have been unable to light a fire.



Greg and Paul explore the ruined Grange. They realise they can't stay there now. Paul
tells Greg that they have told the kids that the others have not died but are merely
sheltering somewhere else. Greg thinks they should be told the truth.


Greg and Paul

Back in the barn, Greg tells John and Lizzie, that Emma and the others (which include
Charmian, Vic, Donnie and Pete) were put to sleep by the smoke from the fire. He goes
on to announce that they are going to journey to a farm where they can get help and
that Ruth will be there too.



They pack up the cart and set off for Whitecross. It is a journey which will take them
several days. One night they stop off at a hay barn. Here Jenny collapses. That night
non-one can sleep. Arthur complains to Paul that he can't take this latest blow, losing
Charmian and the others in the fire has been too much for him. Jenny too is restless.
She asks Greg to tell her about Charles and Whitecross. She particularly wants to
hear abut the babies there and becomes concerned when Greg says there was only
one. She asks about Ruth as well and Greg lies, saying she was fine.



The following day at Whitecross, Pet and a shepherd called Hubert argue over a stolen pig. It
transpires that Hubert took one of her pigs in retaliation for Charles taking one of his rams. Pet
and Charles are annoyed that he has killed the pig as they have no salt left to store it. He
tells Hubert, who is a relative newcomer, that he needs to speak to him about how the
community works.



Just as the disagreement comes to an end, Greg and party arrive in a state of exhaustion.
Pet and Charles are very pleased to see Greg again. Greg explains that they have been
burnt out. Charles immediately tells him they can stay at Whitecross. Jenny who is
exhausted is taken inside and immediately put to bed.



Charles and Pet hold a welcoming party in one of the houses for the newcomers. Both wine
and honey cake is provided. Charles formally welcomes them all to Whitecross.



Jenny is called away by Greg. She wants to know where Ruth is. Pet asks Jenny if she wants a
wash down and she agrees. Pet fetches Hubert to tell her about Ruth. Hubert tells her that he
didn't find Ruth. Seeing as Jenny didn't even know she was missing, she is beside herself with
fear. Whilst Pet is getting the water for Jenny, she tells Charles that she thinks Greg and the
others will stay. Charles looks concerned by this prospect.


Greg and Jenny

Charles and Greg discuss the possibility of him and the others staying at Whitecross. Greg
is not sure, but Charles tries to convince him otherwise. Greg is worried that there isn't room
for both of them at Whitecross. Charles disagrees.


Charles and Greg

Charles gifts Greg a tinderbox. Greg thanks him but cheekily asks if he may make some
improvements to it. Meanwhile, Pet and the children come across Hubert who is carrying
a sack which contains the stolen pig. Realising he's not going to get away with it, Hubert
pretends he was bringing it over especially for the new arrivals to eat. Paul and the
others are very grateful to him.



Jenny's contractions have begun. She soon comes to tears about the absence of Ruth. Pet tries
to comfort her whilst a concerned Greg goes off to speak to Charles.


Greg and Jenny

Greg asks Charles if he will go to look for Ruth. He is especially concerned as he has realised
that he didn't leave any information at the Grange as to where they were headed next and
Ruth may have gone back there. Charles agrees to go and search for her by motorbike, using
the remainder of the stored petrol. He hopes to be back within four hours.

Charles sets off

Pet tends to Jenny and tells her a little about her previous life. Her contractions are
getting closer together.


Pet tends Jenny

Greg discusses Charles with Pet. He worries that Charles thinks that because he is
looking for Ruth, that he will stay at Whitecross forever out of gratitude. He also
complains that Charles keeps pouring out his superiority over him. Pet remains
optimistic about the future and tells Greg she thinks they will all have a lovely time
at Whitecross together.



Against all the odds, Charles arrives back with Ruth. Greg is very pleased to see her. Some
time later, Ruth emerges after seeing Jenny, to tell Greg and the others that everything is
as it should be and they have a little time before the birth. Encouraged by Ruth, Charles lays
out his plans for Whitecross. He recognises that they need more people to achieve things. He
has high hopes that Whitecross may one day even become a small town.


Ruth's return

Pet asks how he feels about having almost bribed Greg into staying, what with finding
Ruth, providing food, shelter and the gift of the tinderbox, but their conversation is
playful. Meanwhile, Jenny tells Greg that she thinks everything is going to be alright.



Episode Review

The first episode of the second series is unremittingly depressing. The deaths of regular characters, particularly Mrs Cohen, Charmian and Vic, the departure of Abby and the pressing cold, make the hope of the title the last word on either the characters or the viewers minds.

Clearly a paradigm shift has occurred off screen. Indeed it is clear that Jack Ronder's vision of the series has now superseded Nation's. He and other members of the production team have taken the drastic decision of a cast cull and a change of scene in order for characters and events to progress. This is largely a good decision, but doesn't make this episode any less negative and unsettling. The change of actress playing Ruth is also irritating at first, as it is another element of inconstancy between seasons. Although to be fair, the viewer of 1976 would have been unlikely to remember what the actress playing Ruth looked like since her single introductory appearance the previous year.

Denis Lill's Charles makes a strong return and Lorna Lewis' Pet is also an obvious asset to the new cast of regulars. The antagonism between Greg and Charles over leadership, which is flagged up almost immediately, is to become a central theme of this second series. Hubert's low key introduction gives no clue to his future centrality. However Jenny is the focus of this episode as she surrenders to motherhood in a second series which will rarely see her as anything more than a worrier in denim dungarees. Carolyn Seymour's absence is tangible and emphasises more than any other factor that its all change for our survivors. All in all this is a jarring start to Survivors second run.


Rating: 8/10



Episode 14 :  Birth of a Hope

writer: Jack Ronder
first broadcast:
31st March 1976


Regular Cast:

Greg Preston: Ian McCulloch
Charles Vaughan: Denis Lill
Jenny Richards: Lucy Fleming
Paul Pitman:
Christopher Tranchell
Arthur Russell: Michael Gover
Lizzie Willoughby: Tanya Ronder
John Millon: Stephen Dudley

and introducing...

Pet Simpson:
Lorna Lewis
Ruth Anderson: Celia Gregory
Hubert Goss: John Abineri


designer: Ian Watson
director:
Eric Hills
producer:
Terence Dudley
episode recorded: 
20th - 25th January 1976



For the Radio Times feature promoting the start of the second series, previews, episode listing and details of TV programmes broadcast in this week in 1976 click here



NEXT EPISODE: GREATER LOVE by Don Shaw



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