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The Navy Lark - The Northampton Hunt Ball

'Life is full of little surprises for most people, particlarly when the postman calls at breakfast time. But he never surprises me, i know what im going to get: another tax demand that says pay in seven days or we'll have all the furniture removed including the bath; or the bill from the garage for repairing the parts on the car that broke down again the day afterwards. However, someone who is in for some surprising mail is - Cheif Petty Officer Pertwee....'


AS Johnson brings the mail to Pertwee for 'checking'. Upon finding nothing in the other crews mail, he opens a letter actually addressed to him and inside finds an invitation to - "The Northampton Horse and Hound Harriers Annual Hunt Ball and Get Together" - which he received because he helped a girl in in the high street by lending her his chewing gum to mend her punctured bicycle tire. After deciding to attend - "The Northampton Horse and Hound Harriers Annual Hunt Ball and Get Together" - Pertwee tries to work out he is going to get the money to get to Northampton.

On the bridge SL Phillips is telling No.1 how he has an invitation to - "The Northhampton Horse and Hound Harriers Annual Hunt Ball and Get Together" - because he lent a friend of the family his bike when she was in town,'strange though, it came back with a dirty great lump of chewing gum in the tire', and that he is planning to take WRN Cornwell and tell WRN Chasen a convincing story of why she cant go. Breaking up the conversation are CPO Pertwee's many and various attempts to get a railway warrant to Northampton and 48hr pass, the reasons include: visiting the factory from whch the crew's shoes are made; and a sudden family reunion with his long lost brother.

WRN Cornwell visits WRN Chasen at Povey's office and SL Phillips duplicity is revealed as he has told Judy that Heather had the most conservative upringing,('i think it's awful how parents went on in those days, imagine not letting you go out after halfpast six, and not letting you wear nylons until you were 21, and having to smoke cigarrettes made out of brown paper and cabbage leaves') all news to WRN Chasen. At this most opportune moment, SL Phillips and No.1 arrive and Phillips is suitably chastised by the WRNs. WRN Cornwell then tells him that CPO Pertwee has offered them a lift to - "The Northampton Horse and Hound Harriers Annual Hunt Ball and Get Together" - in his car,'Oh really, thats jolly ni ..... IN HIS WHAT?', and Phillips is told how one of Pertwee's relatives won the pools and shared the money with the family allowing Pertwee to ligitimatly buy a Fosdyke 3 litre Sports.

SL Phillips and No.1 go into Povey's office. Povey, suspecting his wife is having an affair,'surely not, i mean what other man would be clott enough...', asks the two if they could follow her to see where she actually goes on her supposed nights out to the cinema or her cousin Edith's, 'for the past five years her cousin Edith has lived in Peru'. No.1 is retissent but is talked into it, SL Phillips however is attending the - "The Northampton Horse and Hound Harriers Annual Hunt Ball and Get Together" - that night and so L Bates gets to accompany No.1.

In CPO Pertwee's car on the way to - "The Northampton Horse and Hound Harriers Annual Hunt Ball and Get Together" -, Cpo Pertwee is saying how he'll be getting a new car,(I thought this was the new model?)[Hardly sir, its a week old]'. When questioned about how he can afford to run the car, Pertwee slips up and tells Phillips he got it from a legacy from his white bearded old grandpa,

Judy - But you told me you'd won it on the stock exchange.

Phillips - Yes, and I've just remembered, you told No.1 a relative of yours had won the pools and shared it out.

Pertwee - Yes er well, yeah well you see, i mean err, yes well...thats it!

Phillips - What is?

Pertwee - I havn't the faintest idea hang on, wait a minute. Yes - My dear white bearded old grandfather won five quid on the pools, the shock killed him, so he left it to me and I bought some shares which rocketed over night and here we are motoring in the Fosdyke Sir, yeah - hows that?

Phillips - Not bad, not bad - for the time.

Judy then asks Phillips if, as map reader, he had any idea where they were, and he disappoints them by telling them they have about 150 miles to go, much to the chagrin of CPO Pertwee, 'we've been going about two hours, and the whole journey was only 137 miles to start with'.

No.1 and L Bates are outside Povey's house waiting for Mrs Povey to leave. when she does they follow her and end up at the dock yard where she is met by AS Goldstein who is advertising 'the new sensastion of the age' which, when quized by No.1, he reveals as 'Floating Bingo of course' and CPO Pertwee's new found source of wealth. At this point Pertwee and co. arrive in the car, having managed to totally avoid - "The Northampton Horse and Hound Harriers Annual Hunt Ball and Get Together" -, they did find Southampton however. Pertwee initial denies all knowledge of Floating Bingo but relents when they get to Troutbridge where the bingo is being hosted by AS Johnson. Pertwee tells all about his bingo scheme, and the reason for his rapid wealth,'the numbers we call out and the numbers they've got on their cards don't quite sort of match up'. The police raid the ship and the bingoers are arrested. Povey rings the ship to find out news of his wife and is told by SL Phillips that she's been arrested just before he is drgged off by the police.

Taking part were:

Able Seaman Goldstein - Tenniel Evans

Able Seaman Johnson - Ronnie Barker

Lieutenant Bates - Michael Bates

Commander Murray - Stephen Murray

CPO Pertwee - Jon Pertwee

SL Phillips - Leslie Phillips

Ramona Povey/WRN Chasen - Heather Chasen

WRN Judy Cornwell - Judy Cornwell

Captain Povey - Richard Caldicot

Written By: Laurie Wyman

Produced By: Alastair Scott Johnson