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Goodbye Mr Snowy - Listener discussions to 9 Jan 2011

Tayler Cresswell Tayler Cresswell | 18:19 PM, Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Illustration of Nigel Pargetter's funeral by message board poster, Cheshire-Cat

Illustration of Nigel Pargetter's funeral, as imagined by message board poster, Cheshire-Cat.

It's been an eventful week on the message board which has been thoroughly shaken to the core by The Archers' 60th anniversary. On Twitter, new characters have popped up - namely two little Henry's, a Lizzie, Nigel's Ghost, Radio Ambridge and Borchester Police among them.

There has been a lot of praise for the acting and scriptwriting in the wake of Sunday's episode. Elizabeth's grief, David's guilt, even Pip have moved many to tears. The quiet continuation of life in Ambridge was appreciated, although quite a few suspect that Brian may have an ulterior motive in offering to help Ruth out on the farm.

The message board is still heaving with responses to the anniversary episode with plenty of people signing up to register their disquiet.

Many on the message board say they've decided to switch off and some that they're considering it. Others say that they're just reading the synopses or the message board for the time being.

So - that's it. I've stopped listening, at least for now. I suppose I might come back in a year or two when the dust has settled, but we'll see. On the other hand, I think I will keep logging in here occasionally - can't give up everything, after all... (nomorelurking)

I'm sad you've given up on The Archers, because the last few days have been excellent and you've missed an absolute gem of a scene between Susan and Vicky. I think we're going to see some cracking storylines and writing over the next few weeks. (Morganish)

....it's like a drug....I just...can't...stop....listening....just can't stop....aaaghhh.... As no rehab centre available, will continue with this filthy habit and hope that things improve.... (Ginger Wine)

It's worse than coming off the fags....it really is. (Doodlysquat)

Helen's newfound happiness and "hairshirt Tony" have riled many - some want the old Helen back! Others are cross that Pat is still pussy-footing around her daughter. There have been many questions about the details around Helen's pre-eclampsia. After all Helen's research, why didn't she recognise the signs? Why has no one asked how much the baby weighs? Would her symptoms have been more severe in real life?

Still crossing my fingers and reading the synopsis to see if they please will let this develop well. I had to switch off hairshirt Tony... it was awful (although actually in character for him). I am a firm believer that in real life people don't get 'their comeuppance' (helen) but really......... surely someone would have told Tony he was an ok dad? (Ruralsnowflakebliss)

Don't worry, it's only temporary, as soon as someone puts a wet glass down without a coaster you snap right out of it. (Vicky S)

The experience of having to care for a baby (and put it first) could transform Helen's outlook on life over a period of time. (Mike)

Nice Helen is scary! (Chris Vickery on Facebook)

Read the What's with Helen? Facebook discussion

They're taking bets on whether or not Helen will be "a reformed character, wonderful daughter, sister, friend and mother - end of story" within the next four months. Most think she will, but hope she won't! There were a few naysayers:

I think Helen will continue to have problems managing her state of mind and relating to others, especially when her Henry passes the completely helpless stage and begins to assert his own identity. Poor Henry. I feel sorry for him. Keeping his mummy sane - what a lot of responsibility for such a little person. (FagAshLil)

Place your bets on the Fancy a bet? thread.

The Pargetter inheritance is being debated on the message board as some start to wonder at the impact of Nigel's death

I only know one family who live somewhere comparable to Lower Loxley, and the eldest son will get the lot. Tisn't necessarily anything within the parents control either, property may well be in trust. (Moonflower)

I would be very surprised if Lower Loxley had not been entailed... If Freddie did not exist, Lower Loxley would pass to Nigel's brother, if he had one, failing that an uncle, male cousin or more remote male line relation... Expect lengthy and messy litigation! (Wallasey)

Read more in the Male succession? Really? thread.

Making plans for Nigel...

The preparations for Nigel's funeral continue apace in the Now is the hour thread on the message board - they're making sure Nigel gets a good send off.
(Thanks to Cheshire-Cat for the illustration of their plans posted at the top of this blog post.)

Twitter's Borsetshire Police are making "enquiries" into the circumstances around Nigel's death, asking for witnesses to come forward.

Post-mortem results prove inconclusive. Investigation continues. Observational stake-out of funeral planned for Thursday. #thearchers #sattc (@borsetpolice)

And on the message board, in Fantasy Archers, PC Dave Barry (Kathy Perks' ex) has been sniffing around:

Dear Mrs Pargetter
I have been back in Borchester for less than a month and it is with great sadness that I have learned of your husband's tragic accident. Nigel was very kind to me when I was at Borchester CID twenty years ago and he will be sorely missed in Ambridge. I remember several hilarious encounters with him, when we had to lock him up, drunk and disorderly in a gorilla outfit, so it is with a heavy heart that I will attend St Stephen's on Thursday to pay my last respects to Nigel.
With deepest sympathy
Yours sincerely
Detective Chief Superintendent David Barry

Read the unfolding story in the Fantasy Archers thread, Dave Barry's Week.

Radio Ambridge has been playing requests on Twitter using blip.fm to provide the music.

We'd like some to play some cheerful songs as our antidote to the funereal tone around Ambridge. What do you suggest? #thearchers

@beechenhillfarm Thanks for your request. We'll look for Up on the Roof. We like Carole King too. #thearchers

Plus Community Radio station StroudFM spent Sunday evening dedicating songs to Nigel, with Ryan Adams' Hard Way to Fall, Eilidh Patterson's Falling Hard & Fast and Stephen Stills' Bound to Fall. The station later posted the following tweet about Sunday night's DJ @SandrineFranceB:

Sandrine would like to apologise to anyone who isn't as obsessed with #thearchers as she is!!! (@StroudFM)

Tayler Cresswell is the host of The Archers message board.


  • Comment number 1.

    I'm quite surprised there have been no responses to this yet, actual acknowledgement of events in ML. I'm a little too busy right now to read it fully, let alone respond, but hopefull more will have by the time I get back...

  • Comment number 2.

    'Will hopefully have more time'... what was *that*?

    Nice thing about the blogs, though. No three minute wait.

  • Comment number 3.

    Oh, I see I got it right first time, apart from the missing 'y', it just looked weird on reading it back.

    Going away now...

  • Comment number 4.

    It seems to me that much more weight is being attributed here to positive comments than to the literally hundreds of negative comments posted on the various blogs and message boards.

    Once again, I can only urge listeners (present and former) who feel that their views are not being taken seriously to put real pen to paper and write to the Director General. As I've said on previous posts, if Lorraine Heggessey's views, which she expressed on Wednesday's edition of The Media Show, are common throughout the BBC, then far more weight is given to written complaints as opposed to electronic comments received on blogs, message boards and via websites etc.

    Listen for yourself at:


    Plenty of full post bags cannot be so easily ignored.

  • Comment number 5.

    Any chance of shifting Cheshire Cat's picture over to the left a bit - can't quite see Cranford Crystal, though I have to say I'm very touched by the depiction of our own dear Sharpissima prostrate in a Bombay Sapphire induced paroxysm of distress.

  • Comment number 6.

    FormerArchersFan - As you say perhaps too much weight spent on positive comments? I spent the 'funeral' time last night writing pen and paper letters, as you suggested, instead of listening to Radio 4. Posted them this morning.

  • Comment number 7.

    Was it Herr Flick in 'Allo, Allo', or Arte Johnson who used to say 'Verrry Eenteresting...'

    The first piece of the entry contains no links, while each following vignette contains at least one, and doesn't address the chief reason for the 'disquiet' at all. Namely, the implausible story line. So despite my earlier optimism, a state of denial still seems to be in effect.

  • Comment number 8.

    Ooh, Tayler - you should be a diplomat!

    Any chance of you writing a few epis to put things straight? You alone have the golden touch with the real punters!

  • Comment number 9.

    You alone have the golden touch with the real punters!

    She certainly does.

    Thanks, Tayler.

  • Comment number 10.

    Great picture Cheshire Cat - well done.I hadn't realised that was meant to be La Sharps following the herse. Makes senses!

  • Comment number 11.

    Lovely blog Tayler. Super pic by Cheshire-Cat - she's even popped another bottle of BS inside the hearse for La S.

    I appreciate your nicely restrained reference to the unhappiness of loads of listeners that the 60th anniversary has been 'celebrated' by shoving Nigel off the roof: "The message board is still heaving with responses to the anniversary episode with plenty of people signing up to register their disquiet."

    Lil's twin x

  • Comment number 12.

    From to one bungle to another.
    What is the matter with these people that they can't see a complete flop when it happens under their noses.
    The 'let them eat cake' stance WILL come and bite your backsides - except for Taylor who deserves a medal.

  • Comment number 13.

    Thanks Tayler. The first blog that has been put up here since the foul happenings on the roof of Lower Loxley that hasn’t caused me total offence.

    The cartoon is terrific. And there was me thinking that humour was outlawed in Ambridge.

  • Comment number 14.

    Ridiculous. How can listeners possibly suspend disbelief? We all know what's happened to Nigel. The actor, aged sixty (not the easiest age at which to be looking for work), has been summarily dismissed from a job after decades of service. He will have had to cope over the Christmas period with the shock of a summary dismissal, the prospect of an immediate and significant drop in income, the humiliation of having been dropped and the worry that it was something to do with him and the added burden of not being able to confide in his wider circle of family and friends. He will have the stress of replacing the lost income that after 27 years he's presumably come to rely on, as well as losing a job that he has said he loved. What a rotten thing to do to somebody and what a horrible way of doing it.

  • Comment number 15.

    Well said, from-rusholme-with-love. I am, however, very impressed by Mr Seed's gentlemanly conduct and the way he's accepted things and is now focusing on his new play. He hasn't said a word against the dreaded VW either in interviews or on Twitter.

  • Comment number 16.

    Yes, well-said. Nothing against you Tayler, but it does look as though like me, most people aren't happy to subscribe to a 'positive' thread in case it's used against us.

  • Comment number 17.

    I haven't said much about this, but I thought that the SATTC episode was great and I think that the storylines that are happening now are great. I think that the reactions of various characters are giving plenty of scope for opinions and discussion.

  • Comment number 18.

    You should make sure you post on the other threads too, Sunny. It's not fair if it isn't balanced comment.

  • Comment number 19.

    did he fall or was he pushed?

  • Comment number 20.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 21.

    After reading some of the blogs I see that I am not alone in switching off the Archers . I have listened for the past 31 years and enjoyed the program very much . However the story line for the 60th anniversary was uncalled for, Nigel was one of the best character to bring a spark to the program from his wacky antics to building a good business with Elizabeth and always with love and care . He will be very much missed .
    I would imagine that the 60th anniversary story line was supposed to pull people into listening to the program not turn them off .

  • Comment number 22.

    Broadsword89 come and join us on the blog 'The Archers Editor on the 60th Anniversary', there are over 900 posts and counting, plus lots of other entertainment for ex-listeners and grieving Archers fans.


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