Hetty Wainthropp (played by Patricia Routledge) is a retired working-class woman from Darwen in North West England, who has a knack for jumping to conclusions and solving crimes of varying bafflement which often are too minor to concern the police. Although on occasion her husband offers assistance, he more often than not tends to the home while Hetty gads about the countryside with young Geoffrey in search of resolution and justice. In many episodes Hetty seeks the help and advice of DCI Adams of the local constabulary. The series is based on characters from the 1986 novel Missing Persons by David Cook (who co-wrote the series with John Griffith Bowen). The incidents in Cook's book were inspired by his own mother's real-life experiences.
Childsplay Episode # 105
When Robert goes to stay with his brother Frank in Weston-Super-Mare, Hetty visits Frank's daughter Peggy in Bodley Bay. Peggy's son, Tom, has been suspended from school after an ecstasy tablet was planted in his blazer pocket. Hetty goes undercover as a dinner lady at Tom's school to find out the truth. Her extended stay means a visit from Geoff with a change of clothes and, having just passed his driving test, he takes up mechanic Janet's offer to do a trial run in a VW Beetle that she is trying to sell. As soon as he arrives, Geoff is roped in on the case. In disguise as a new pupil, he joins the gang of boys responsible for framing Tom, but soon finds himself in serious trouble. It is only Hetty's quick thinking that saves him from a potentially nasty end. However, all ends safely as Tom is vindicated and Geoff finds himself the owner of a newly sprayed VW - in more or less perfect working order.
Saturday, April 06, 2013 Length : 49 min MPT
Pursuit By Proxy Episode # 106
Hetty's neighbour, Dora James, has tried to buy some kitchen furniture. But after parting with her money, she discovers that the firm, Pine Paradise, has gone into liquidation. Dora asks Hetty to represent her at the creditor's meeting. When the creditors decide to track down Ray Lever, a missing partner of Pine Paradise, Hetty offers her services.
Saturday, April 20, 2013 Length : 49 min MPT
How Time Flies Episode # 107
Frank decides that it's time to leave Upper Darwen. As a parting gift, he invites Hetty for a day out on a local steam railway. Hetty is delighted, and Geoff and Janet join them for the ride. An urgent telephone call from Montagu 'Monty' Francis, claiming he is in extreme danger, abruptly changes their plans.
Saturday, April 27, 2013 Length : 49 min MPT
Something to Treasure Episode # 108
Hetty and Robert arrive home after a long break with their son Derek and his family in Australia. Geoff and Janet have been minding the agency and Hetty has scarcely unpacked before she gets embroiled in a new case about hidden treasure. She and Geoff have been asked by Moira Pridwell to find a book written by her husband, who died in a recent explosion at the iron ore mine where he worked in Cumbria.
Saturday, May 25, 2013 Length : 49 min MPT
Family Values Episode # 109
With some reluctance Robert agrees to go undercover to help solve a Big House mystery. The owner of the house has died under somewhat suspicious circumstances. While the police seem satisfied that there was no foul play, the dead man's brother, Harry Carter, believes that the housekeeper, Ella Parsons, is a fraud who has systematically stolen property from the house.