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Anthony Trollope's Framley Parsonage - 3. A Gift of Fire
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The Hat

30 minutes
First broadcast:
Sunday 20 January 2013

By Colin MacDonald.

Sheriff Finlay travels from Scotland to York for the funeral and cremation of his older brother William, with whom he didn't get on. When he gets there he is greeted with barely disguised hostility by William's widow.

She tells him arrangements for the funeral are all made: it is going to be a Humanist service and the family heirloom fireman's hat, which was worn with pride by the brothers' grandfather, is in the coffin and is going to be incinerated along with William.

Alistair decides to get the hat before the coffin makes its final journey into the flames. This will take him into dangerous territory, breaking into a funeral parlour at night and braving the criminal underworld to retrieve Grandad's hat and make a final peace with his brother.

Coronation Street veteran Thelma Barlow stars as his sister-in-law Louise and Stanley Baxter is Sheriff Alistair Finlay in this black comedy with a warm heart about death, brotherly love and saying goodbye.

Sheriff Alistair Finlay.................Stanley Baxter
Louise ....................................Thelma Barlow
Joe/Darren ..............................David Holt

Directed by Marilyn Imrie
A Catherine Bailey production for BBC Radio 4.


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