Only Fools And Horses Series 6 Episode 5 Sickness And Wealth Full Script

This is the full script for Only Fools And Horses Series 6 Episode 5 – Sickness And Wealth.

Del charges people to attend seances conducted by Uncle Albert’s psychic girlfriend. However, the enterprise somehow ends in hospital.

Sickness And Wealth Full Script


Rodney’s computer is on the table. Del, wearing his market clothes, is laying asleep on a chair.

From the kitchen we can hear the tinny sound of an old spin dryer.

Rodney – Oh come on, Cassandra…Yeah, I know you’ve got your studying to do. Can’t we just go out for a quick drink or a pizza or something, then you can do your studying when you get home. Well, you know it’s ‘cos I like being with you. I sort of miss you when we’re apart… Alright, I’ll tell you the truth. I’m bored stiff in this flat… What? No, that’s Albert, he’s got himself a new spin dryer, well it was new once! He bought it cheap ‘cos of the bomb damage. Yes, at the moment it’s jumping around the kitchen like a Dalek with St Vitus’s dance. Del? He’s laid out asleep in the chair with his dodgy stomach… Yeah, he’s still getting them pains. Well, he’s going out later for a vindaloo… no, well to him, you see, it’s a sort of alternative medicine… I don’t want to go out with him for a curry… I’ll spend the evening in. Albert’s got that old bird of his coming round – Elsie Partridge, I told you about her. We’ll most probably play some Max Bygraves platters and then sit and talk about our ailments. Pity Del’s going out, he’d have liked that. Oh well, that’s very nice of them. Well, tell your parents thank you very much, I’d love to come to tea tomorrow. Seven o’clock tomorrow, lovely… Well, I’ll see you tomorrow evening then.

We see that Del is sound asleep. Rodney smiles, satisfied that he will not be overheard.

Rodney – (Cont’d) You know I love you. Don’t I tell you often enough? Do you love me? Oh very funny, Cassandra, I’m laughing this end as well… Alright, alright, I’ll see you tomorrow.

He blows a kiss down the phone. Now another kiss, then a third one.

Albert enters from the kitchen surrounded by a great cloud of steam.

Albert – Here y’are son. I bought a Chinese take-away earlier, I’ve just warmed it up. We’ve got fried pork, fried rice and… something.

Rodney – How can you stay out in the kitchen with all that steam and noise?

Albert – I’m an old naval stoker, ain’t I? That’s nothing to me. I remember coming round Cape Horn once, I was on this merchantman.

Rodney – The things you and your mates got up to!

Albert – A merchantman’s a ship.

Rodney – Oh!

Albert – It was so hot and steamy in the boiler room that when I come out I was shrivelled like a prune.

Rodney – Oh, that’s what caused it.

Albert – I hate it when you’re in a sarky mood, Rodney! D’you reckon Del Boy should eat all this fried food? He’s been getting a lot of jip with his guts lately.

Rodney – There’s nothing wrong with him. He had a similar thing years ago. We rushed him into casualty one night. They had ECG machines out, doctors and nurses everywhere. Then he burped! That was it, a miracle cure.

Albert – Well, perhaps you’re right. I’ll get the knives and forks.

Rodney moves computer from table. Instead of then usual computer beep we hear a short, low buzz (like a warning). Del automatically rubs his belly.

Del – Sorry. You alright, bruv?

Rodney – Yeah, how you feeling?

Del – Triffic, Rodders, brill. What’s all that whirring noise?

Rodney – That’s Albert’s spin dryer.

Del – His what?

Del goes to the kitchen and opens the door.

Del – (Cont’d) Oi, what is your game? What are you doing buying this old junk? Here, look at it, it’s knocking all the paint off the units.

Albert comes out of kitchen.

Albert – I got it as an investment, Del. It cost us 50 pence to get our clothes dry at the laundromat. I bought that off the bloke upstairs for a score.

Del – You dozy old twonk! That’s the one I sold him last week for a tenner. Why didn’t you come and ask me first?

Albert – I didn’t like to bother you, boy. Not with you being ill.

Del – Ill? I’m not ill. There’s nothing wrong with me.

Albert – But you got that stomach trouble again.

Del – It’s not stomach trouble. It’s just pains, normal pains.

Albert – Well, you came in tonight and flopped straight down on that sofa in agony.

Del – No, you don’t understand Unc, it’s called PMA.

Rodney – PM… I thought only women got that.

Del – No no Rodney, that’s PMP. PMA means positive mental attitude. That’ my buzzword. It’s what us yuppies have got. See, what I was dong was laying on the chair psyching myself up for the challenge of tomorrow.

Albert – So what was all the sweating and holding your belly about?

Del – Oh that was nothing. There’s nothing wrong with me… Rodney, go to the bathroom and fetch us some Andrews Liver Salts, will you?

Rodney goes into the kitchen

Albert – I’ll do you a plate of Chinese, Del. Gawd knows what those local takeaways are gonna do when they know we’re gonna move.

Del now worried, almost fearful, is like a man facing a confession.

Del – Move?

Albert – Didn’t you see that letter? It arrived this morning. It says on the envelope it’s from the council housing department.

Del – Oh, that? Yeah, I read it.

Albert – Is it about them letting us buy this flat?

Del – No, it’s not about them letting us buy this flat. It’s about them evicting us from this flat.

Albert – Evicting us?

Del – Ssshhh! I don’t want Rodney to know about this. I haven’t paid the rent on this place for the last three months.

Albert – Cor blimey! I knew things were a bit tight but I didn’t know they were that bad.

Del – It’s all gone wrong for me, Albert. All me investments have gone sidewards. Rodney’s been down the market for over a week trying to flog these exclusive women’s fashions. But all the frost and sleet seems to have put ’em off buying summer dresses. I’ve been tucked up by some of my other investments and at the end I just couldn’t afford to pay the rent.

Albert – No, but you’re still drinking those pina coladas in the wine bars. You’re still eating in the curry houses and the bistros.

Del – That is all on the slate. I’ve gotta keep me image up. Once your competitors get an inkling that you’re going down the pan, they start queue-jumping to pull the chain. And that plonker Rodney ain’t helping me.

Albert – Yeah, I se what you mean. Don’t worry about it, Del.

Del – Don’t worry about it! I ain’t had a decent night’s kip for the last two weeks worrying about it. It’s with me everywhere, all the time.

Albert – Something’ll turn up right out of the blue, you’ll see. He who dares wins, eh?

Del – (Half-hearted and almost defeated) Yeah, he who dares wins. Oh you cowson.

Albert – You’ve gotta see a quack with that belly of yours.

Del – There’s nothing wrong with me. They’re just normal pains. You keep the doctors away from me, Albert. I don’t like doctors.

Albert – You could go and see that Scottish quack – what’s his name? Dr Meadows. He’s not like a normal doctor, he’s sort of human. You know you can talk to him. He’s like a mate.

Del – Look, I do not want to go and see Dr Meadows ‘cos there is nothing wrong with me. Alright?

Albert – It’s your life son.

Del – Yes, it is my life and I don’t wanna hear no more about it.

Albert – Alright son, I won’t say another word on the subject.

Rodney enters with the tin of Andrews.

Albert – (Cont’d) Don’t you think Del Boy ought to go to the docot’s with his belly?

Del – Oh Gawd!

Rodney – He won’t go to the doctor’s, though, will he? ‘Cos he’s terrified of doctors.

Del – I am not terrified of doctors. The reason I am not going to see Dr Meadows is ‘cos there’s nothing wrong with me.

Rodney makes the sound of a chicken clucking.

Del – (To Rodney) You’re starting to wind me up, Rodney. I’ll get a glass for this.

Albert – You seeing Cassandra tonight?

Rodney – No, not tonight, Unc.

Del – No, he’s going round tomorrow night for tea.

Rodney – That’s right. Her mum and dad said I could… You git, you was ear wigging my conversation.

Del – ‘Of course I love you, Cassandra. I tell you often enough, don’t I?’

Del then blows three kisses.

Rodney – That is out of order, Derek.

Del is laughing as he enters the kitchen without noticing the steam. Now, from in kitchen (OOV) we hear him cry out in alarm.

Rodney – That’s not fair is it? It was a private conversation.

Albert – Why d’you speak to her from the living room? It’s a cordless phone, Rodney. You could have talked in one of the other rooms.

Rodney – Like where? I couldn’t use my bedroom ‘cos the walls are so thin the people next door can hear, and I can’t use the kitchen ‘cos you’ve got R2D2 break-dancing in there.

Albert – You could use the bathroom.

Rodney – The bathr… Albert, I cannot hold a romantic conversation surrounded by damp towels, Del’s soggy espadrilles and a bog with no lid. Besides, it’s freezing in that bathroom.

Albert – You’ve noticed that as well, have you?

Rodney – Well, you can hardly fail to notice it, can you? Our bathroom window gets condensation on the outside.

Albert – Why d’you think that room is so cold?

Rodney – Well, I don’t know, do I?

Albert – Now listen, son, listen. You may call me a silly old sod…

Rodney – You’re a silly old sod.

Albert – Look, be serious, Rodney. Us sailors are superstitious, it’s sort of an affinity with the supernatural, and I think there’s a presence in that bathroom.

Rodney – A presence?

Albert – When you’re in the shower, don’t you feel there’s someone else there with you?

Rodney – Yeah but there usually is. Del’s having a shave or you doing your toenails.

Albert – The reason that room is so cold is it’s possessed.

Rodney – (His protest is feeble) Oh leave off, Unc.

Albert – Elsie Partridge is a medium. She knows all there is to know about the supernatural, and she said she could sense a presence in that bathroom.

Rodney – Blimey!

Del enters from the kitchen, carrying a glass.

Del – It’s like a sauna out there. Switch that thing off.

Albert – It’ll be finished in a minute, Del. D’you want to put anything in it for you?

Del – Yes, your head.

Del pours himself a brandy.

Rodney – Have you ever noticed how cold our bathroom is?

Del – Yeah, yeah I have. It does get a bit tatas out there, don’t it?

Rodney – When you’re in there, right, do you ever get the feeling that you’re not alone?

Del – You mean as if there’s someone else there with you?

Rodney – Yeah.

Del – What, sort of a strange feeling?

Rodney – Yeah.

Del – Like as if you’re being watched?

Rodney – Yeah.

Del – No! Why? Do you?

Rodney – No, no. It’s Albert reckons it’s possessed.

Del – Possessed? Do me a favour. Give us a couple of months and it might be repossessed.

Del now stirs a spoonful of Andrews into his brandy.

Albert – Elsie Partridge reckons it’s haunted.

Del starts laughing into his drink. This in turn gives
a twinge in the stomach.

Del – Oh stop it, will you? You’re making me hurt!

Albert – Elsie Partridge is a medium.

Del – Is she? Well, you better whip that round to her, then. That should fit her a treat.

Albert – I’m not talking about her dress size. She’s a spiritua- list. She can contact the departed.

Del – Yeah, I et that’s where she pulled you.

Albert – She has powers, Del. She in one of the true communicat- ors. Back in the early Sixties she used to hold regular meetings in that hall above John Colliers. People come from miles round to listen to Elsie. They paid thousands of pounds to use her powers of communication.

Rodney – I think there is more to this occult lark than meets the eye, Del.

Del – Do me a favour, Rodders. No self-respecting ghost is gonna haunt our bathroom, is it? Specially after he’s been in there.

Rodney – Then why is it always so cold?

Del – It’s either one of two reasons, Rodney. One, it could be as you two say that the phantom of the karzy has struck again. Or, two, it could be something to do with the fact that the ouncil has put our extractor fan in the wrong way round.

Rodney – Oh yeah. They were supposed to come back and mend it, weren’t they?

Del – Ghosts and ghouls! You two slaughter me.

Del exits to the bedroom area.

Albert – I suppose that extractor fan could have something to do with it.

Del now enters from the bedroom area. He is deep in
thought as he walks across to Albert.

Del – Thousands of pounds?

Albert – Eh?

Del – You said they paid that Elsie Partridge thousands of pounds?

Albert – Yeah. But she never took a penny of it, Del. She used to send it all to Battersea Dog’s Home. I bet she wished she’d have kept some of it now she’s only got her pension to live on.

Del – But they still paid her all that lovely money, though?

Albert – Yeah, they’d pay a fortune to talk to their… No, no, Del. She’s retired now.

Del – Maybe she’d like a part-time job.

Rodney – No, just drop it, Del?

Del – Don’t you see what this means? You were right.

Albert Was I?

Del – You said something would turn up out of the blue. And this is it. Me and Elsie Partridge, what a combination. The old-age pensioner with a priceless gift and a successful yuppy who’s brassic flint. We could make a fortune for each other. I do believe that this is God giving me a sign.

Del looks up to heaven and smiles piously, now stricken
by stomach pains.

Del – (Cont’d) Cor blimey.

Rodney and Albert grab him and force him down into the

Albert – Sit down here, son.

Rodney – What can I get you?

Del – Pina Colada – lots of ice.


Nerys is serving behind the bar.

Jevon – Here Boycie, can we have a word?

Boycie – What is it?

Mike – She’s here.

Mickey – You remember that old Cortina you said me and Jevon would never sell?

Boycie – What Cortina’s that then?

Jevon – That two-tone one – blue and rust. Well me and Mickey flogged it today.

Boycie – But that Cortina was a death trap. You should be ashamed of yourselves!

Mickey – But you sold it to us!

Boycie – Did I? Oh so I did. It weren’t a bad little run around I suppose. Are you and Jevon partners or something?

Jevon – Yeah, we’re doing a bit of trading.

Mickey – We’re specialising in any- thing.

Boycie – Why don’t you pop down my showrooms in the week? I’ve got a few old bangers out the back you could have a go at.

Jevon – Yeah, thanks Boycie.

Mickey – Here, would your Marlene be interested in a Crimplene dress with great big flowers all over it?

Boycie – Well of course she wouldn’t.

Mickey – Oh that’s a shame, ‘cos Rodney Trotter’s got loads of ’em.

Mike – If there’s anything else you want, Mrs Partridge, just give me a shout. (To Boycie) She’s here.

Trigger – Who’s here?

Mike – That spiritualist woman. Here, to tell you the truth, Trigg, I’m having second thoughts about letting Del use upstairs for this séance.

Boycie – You don’t honestly believe in all that mumbo jumbo, do you Michael?

Mike – I don’t actually believe it. I just don’t like taking the chance.

Boycie – Michael, if Elsie Partridge really could raise the dead, half the money lenders in Peckham would be employing her. No, no, it’s all a load of old tosh. Only a simpleton would believe in it.

Trigger – I believe in it.

Boycie – Say no more. (To Mike but Referring to Trigger) He still leaves a glass of milk and biscuits out on Christmas Eve.

Nerys – My mum went to a séance once. She got a message from the other side. It said she would meet a tall bald man who would change her fortune. A week later she got mugged by a skin head.

Mike – There you go Boycie, you can’t argue with that can you? There’s got to be something in all this supernatural stuff.

Trigger – My old gran was a bit of a medium. A few years after my grandfather died she made contact with him.

Mike – Oh yeah? What did he say?

Trigger – Nothing.

Boycie – Nothing?

Nerys – Well he was dead wasn’t he?

Mike – Yes, but she’d just made contact from across the veil.

Trigger – For the last 15 years of his life they didn’t talk to each other.

Nerys – And he kept the row going?

Trigger – Yeah. Well, he was a stubborn man.

Boycie – Well, they must have been interesting séances. A mad medium and a spook with the hump. Hold up, here comes the Ghostbusters.

We see Del, Rodney and Albert enter.

Del – A pina colada for me Nerys,and the usual for everyone else.

Mike – Del, a word.

Del – Alright, Michael. Yes, coming, coming.

Mike – Are you paying for these drinks or what?

Del – Michael, please.

Mike – This slate of yours, Del, is getting out of hand, Del.That Mrs Partridge has just arrived, right, and she’shad food and drink all on your slate.

Del – Don’t worry about it, Mike.

Mike – Over the last few months you’ve had more cocktails than James Bond and a fried lunch every day and all on the slate.

Del – Gimme a couple of weeks and I’ll sort it out with you.

Mike – You’ve had about 10 packs of cigars all on the slate and even the rent for the room upstairs in on the slate.

Del – Unless your gratitude changes Michael, I may have to consider taking my business elsewhere. Look, sit down. I’ve been sailing the good ship Trotter through a little patch of fiscal turbulence, right? But as soon as I get old Elsie Partridge firing on all four cylinders I’ll be laughing.I mean, within a month from now she’ll be bringing ’em back to order. I’ve worked out a little price list. Neighbours and family friends, three quid.Relatives a fiver, spouses and pets a tenner each, and a score for Elvis Presley.This time next year I’ll be a millionaire. Just think what this is going to do to you, Michael. She’ll be drawing them in from the four corners of the kingdom, right? So not only will you be getting the rent for the room upstairs but once the show is finished all the pilgrim’ll be down here having a jolly-up won’t they? Your taking’ll treble overnight. You know it makes sense, Mike.

Mike – Yeah, I s’pose so.

Del – Sit down, Boyce.

Mike – I’m still worried, though.

Del – Oh leave it out, Michael.

Mike – We’re dealing with the powers of darkness here. I mean, are we gonna end up with the table and chairs flying round the bar?

Del – No more than a normal Friday night.

Del and Boycie laugh.

Mike – You realise that this pub is built on the site of a public grave where the victims of the great plague were buried?

Rodney – Oh well, that’s all we need ain’t it, them popping up to celebrate Agincourt, innit?

Nerys – They’d all be covered in boils and scabs and things.

Boycie – It’ll be like a Singing Detective look-alike contest,won’t it?

Rodney – I agree with Mike. We’re messing around with the supernatural. There’s no telling what evil forces we might evoke.

Trigger – Yeah, you could have Satan himself come crashing through the wall.

Del – Well, it’s lucky Rodney’s wearing his old jeans,innit?

Del and Boycie laugh.

There are three loud bumps upon the ceiling.

Del – I think that’s her sign to say she’s ready.

Rodney – Well, it might not mean that.

Del – Either that or she’s got cramp in her wooden leg. Come on, Rodders, come on, let’s go.


Elsie Partridge is seated at a round table. She is in her mid-sixties and is a very sweet and genuine lady. She takes her ‘gift’ and the proceedings very seriously. Rodney, Boycie, Albert, Mike and Trigger are seated around the table. Del carries the last chair to the table and sits down.

Elsie – Now, I think it’s time we began. May I ask you once contact has been made to refrain from interrupting. Now, hands on the table. Fingers touching. Concen-trate.

Elsie now stares directly ahead. Her ead drops to oneside and rests on her shoulder.

Elsie now begins moaning lowly.

Mike – What’s she doing?

Trigger – She’s going…

Trigger moans.

Mike – I mean, why is she doing it?

Albert – She’s gone into a trance.

Mike – Thank Gawd for that. She had one of my pies earlier.

Elsie straightens her head and opens her eyes. She now appears quite normal.

Elsie – The spirits are with us. A man has stepped forward. At all, elderly man wearing a black coat and a black hat. He wishes to speak to someone called Audrey… No,no, Aubrey.

Del – Aubrey?

Rodney shrugs.

We see Mike and Trigger look at each other, mystified.

Boycie – I am here.

Rodney – Aubrey?

Boycie – It’s my middle name.

Trigger – You never said your name was Aubrey.

Boycie – Nor would you if your name was Aubrey.

Elsie – This man seems agitated. He’s brandishing a piece of paper.Have you any idea who it could be?

Boycie – No. This piece of paper, it’s not a logbook for a Cortina, is it?

Elsie – No, it’s a photograph. A black and white photograph. It shows this man, but years younger. There’s an odd-looking boy standing next to him, five or six years old, evil face.

Del – Boycie, it’s you and your dad.

Boycie – Yeah, of course. He’s the only one who ever called me Aubrey.

Elsie – There is a sadness about the photograph, as though some-thing is missing. Of course, your mother isn’t with you.

Boycie – No.

Elsie – Had she passed over to the next world?

Boycie – No. She was taking the photo.

Elsie – I see. This man – your father- is worried. He says you must be a good father, you must look after your child.

Boycie – Is he having a pop at me or something?

Albert – Elsie. Boycie and his wife Marlene can’t have kids.

Del – They’ve been trying for years, you know, but nitto.

Rodney – Yeah, they’ve had tests, things frozen, everything.

Mike – The hospital’s just about given up with him.

Trigger – He’s low on something.

Boycie – Do you mind not discussing my personal life in front of strangers? (To Elsie) You tell my old man to keep his nose out of my business. He was always having a go at me for not giving him a grandchild.

Del – Come on now, take it easy, Aubrey.

Boycie – And you can wrap up for a start. I’m gonna get a drink. It’s a load of old rubbish anyway. I don’t believe any of it.

Boycie exits.

Albert – Are the spirits still with us, Elsie?

Elsie – Yes, yes, yes. They’re still here. Close the circle. Someone else as stepped out. It’s a woman. Tall and slender, long golden-brown hair.

Del reacts – he knows it is his mum. He looks to Rodney who also suspects this.

Elsie – (Cont’d)The fingers covered in ruby and gold. Bracelets adorn the wrists.

Del – You know who that is, don’t you?

Trigger – Sounds like Jimmy Saville.

Del – Jimmy Saville! That is our mother.

Trigger – Sorry, Del Boy, Dave.

Del, fuming, looks to Rodney.

Rodney – Jimmy Saville!

Del – Yeah, that’s right, bruv. Bloody cheek.

Elsie – She says she is proud of her children.

Del and Rodney smile to each other.

Elsie – (Cont’d)She says you have worked hard to succeed. But never mind. She wants to know that she is with you always.

Del and Rodney smile to each other.

Elsie – (Cont’d)Wherever you are, what ever you are doing she is looking over you. She says you mustn’t mourn her any longer. She is happy. She says she is at peace and…

Rodney – Mrs Partridge.

Del – Don’t interrupt, Rodney.

Rodney – I just wanted to clear some-thing up. When she says she’s looking over us all the time, right, well, she don’t mean all the time does she?

Elsie – Well I’d think the spirit world would have its own ideas about discretion.

Rodney – Yes, I was just wondering.

Del – Yeah!

Elsie – She is concerned for you, Derek.

Del – Me? What about me?

Elsie – She is concerned for your health.

Del – I’m alright, Mum, never been better.

Elsie – She says you are not well. She feels your pain.

Del – Ah no, that’s just a bit of jip, that’s all, Mum. Most probably an onion bhaji lodged somewhere.

Elsie – She wants you to go and see a doctor.

Del – There’s nothing the matter with me.

Elsie – She insists.

Del – No, I don’t want to go and see a doctor. You know I don’t like doctors.

Elsie – Oh they’re becoming distant. They’re drifting away.

Albert – Can’t you get ’em back, Elsie?

Elsie – Is there anybody there? If anybody is there, talk to us. Say something.

Nerys – (To Mike)Lager’s off.

Del, Rodney, Albert, Mike, Trigger and even Elsie Part-ridge scream with alarm. This in turn makes nervousNerys scream with alarm.

Nerys – (Cont’d)You made me jump.

Mike – What d’you think you made us do?

Nerys – Well, I had to tell you I’ve got customers waiting down there.

Mike – Alright, alright, I’m coming.

Albert – I’ll get your coat, Elsie.

Albert exits.

Elsie moves to collect her handbag thus leaving Del, Rodney and Trigger alone.

Trigger – So what you gonna do, Del?

Del – About what?

Rodney – About the message from Mum.

Del – Oh do me a favour, Rodney. You didn’t believe all that, did you?

Rodney – Well, you seemed pretty convinced. At one point I thought you were gonna suck your thumb and throw a paddy.

Del – I was only doing that for Elsie’s sake. I mean, she’s a genuine old lady who most probably believes she is getting these messages. But at the end of the day it’s a load of old rubbish.

Trigger – Yeah, I think Del Boy’s right, Dave. I mean, she got a message saying that Boycie’s gotta look after his kid.

Del – Yeah, that’s right, and everyone knows that Nelson’s Column’s got more chance of knocking out a nipper than Boycie.

Rodney – So you’re not going to the doctor’s?

Del – No, I am not going to the doctor’s ‘cos there is nothing wrong with me.

Rodney – See you in the bar, Unc.

Del, Rodney and Trigger exit.

Del – Come on down, Rodney.

Rodney – I’ll only take you…

Albert – (To Elsie)Thanks for doing that, Elsie.

Elsie – That was the first time I’ve ever led to someone at a sitting. I only gave Derek that message because you asked me to.

Albert – I’m grateful. He wouldn’t take any notice of me and Rodney. The only one he’d ever listen to was his mum.


Del, Rodney and Trigger enter.

Mike is putting up a poster: ‘The Séance. Make contactor money back. Tuesday 17th January. 7.30. Admission two pounds fifty.’

Del – Right then, come on, Rodney, here, Nerys. Where are them posters? Rodney stick these up in the window. The sooner the devotees know about them the better.

Marlene – (Deeply concerned)Del.

Del – Wotcha Marlene, hello. What you doing here?

Marlene – Boycie’s just told me what that Elsie Partridge said.

Del – Now don’t you start. I’ve been having enough trouble with Rodney and Albert. There is nothing the matter with me.

Marlene – I’m not talking about your illness. I mean what she said to Boycie.

Del – Look, darling, you don’t wanna take any notice of what Elsie Partridge says because it’s all a con, you see.

Marlene – No, you don’t understand. I’m having a baby.

Del – (Frozen with fear)What?

Marlene – I’ve just had it confirmed at the hospital.

Boycie – So what do you think of that?

Del clutches his stomach as the pain returns.

Rodney – Quickly.

Marlene – Well what’s up with him then?

Rodney – Sympathy pains. A lot of mengo through phantom pregnan-cies.

Boycie – I thought that only happened to the father.

Trigger gives Boycie a little smile. Boycie reacts.


Dr Shaheed, an Indian woman of about 30, is seated be-hind the desk, making a few notes.

Doctor – Come in.

Del – I’m sorry, is Dr Meadows about, the Scottish doctor?

Doctor – No, Dr Meadows left general practise two years ago. He’s working at the local hospital. I’ve taken over from him. I’m Dr Shaheed.

Del – You’re a woman.

Dr Shaheed looks in a mirror.

Doctor – Well, well, so I am. Nobody ever tells me anything these days. You’re Mr Trotter.

Del – I know.

Doctor – Well, come in, take a seat.

Del moves reluctantly to the desk.

Doctor – (Cont’d) What’s the problem?

Del – Me? Oh nothing at all.

Doctor – You’re not ill?

Del – Never felt better.

Doctor – Mr Trotter, I have a waiting-room full of sick people. Now, what is it? You want a certificate?

Del – No, no, I don’t want a certificate. I mean, I’m self-employed. No, it’s just… it’s hardly worth bothering you with.

Doctor – Why don’t you let me be the judge of that? What’s the problem?

Del – Well, I’ve been getting a bit of a Cynthia.

Doctor – Cynthia?

Del – Pain

Del chuckles. The doctor doesn’t get the joke.

Doctor – Where do you get the pain?

Del – Well, all over, really. This morning I got in the lift going down to the…

Doctor – No, no. Where on your body?

Del – Oh right. Get in the old New Delhi.

Doctor – New Delhi?

Del – Yeah, the belly, the belly. You’re not from round these parts, are you?

Doctor – No, I’m from New Delhi.

Del – Really? Not much point calling you in an emergency then, is it?

Del laughs. The doctor doesn’t.

Doctor – I mean I was born in New Delhi and I now live in Peckham.

Del – Yeah, I know. It was just a joke, you see.

Doctor – Oh yes, very good. What sort of pain is it?

Del – (Well… it hurts.

Doctor – Yes, but is it a sharp pan or a dull pain?

Del – Well, it’s a bit of both really.

Doctor – Would you strip to the waist, please, Mr Trotter.

Del – No, no, it’s alright, doc, there’s no need for that. Just give me some pain-killers.

Doctor – I’d like to examine you. Please strip to the waist and lie on the couch.

Del reluctantly moves towards the couch which is behind a screen.

Doctor – (Cont’d) (Do you smoke, Mr Trotter?

Del – Not just now, thank you, doctor.

Doctor – I wasn’t offering, I was enquiring.

Del – Oh, I see. No, I don’t smoke. Well, I ave one cigar a year on Christmas night, but I’m trying to cut down.

Doctor – I don’t think one cigar a year will do you much harm. Do you have any trouble passing water?

Del – I had a dizzy spell going over Tower Bridge once.

Doctor – You have bouts of dizziness?

Del – No, no. It was a joke, doctor.

Doctor – I think it would be best if we stopped all the joking, I’m finding it rather confusing. Do you ever suffer with constipation?

Del – No, regular as clockwork.

Doctor – You have plenty of roughage in your diet?

Del – Nothing but roughage. Muesli, brown bread, all that. I’m a very organic person.

Doctor – That’s very good. Even in this day and age you’d be surprised the number of people still exist on fried foods and takeaways.

Del – Eurgh! Not me, doc. I’m like a walking Grobag. When they bury me there’ll be rhubarb everywhere within six months.

The doctor walks behind the screen and reacts.

Doctor – Mr Trotter. When I said strip to the waist, I meant the top half.

Del – Oh, sorry.


Doctor – You can put your shirt back on now, Mr Trotter. I hope my stephoscope wasn’t too cold for you?

Del – Round here, we call ’em deafascopes.

Doctor – Really? Why?

Del – Well, if you can’t hear nothing, either your deaf or we’re dead!

Doctor – Are you a heavy drinker, Mr Trotter?

Del – Me? No I’m teetotal. Well, I have the odd mineral water, skimmed goat’s milk that sort of thing.

Doctor – You have a very high pulse rate.

Del – Oh thank you, doctor.

Doctor – No, I’m concerned about it. I mean, it’s almost as if you’re frightened of something.

Del – Frightened, me? No, I don’t know the meaning of the word. No, I know what it was. I jogged down here to the surgery from the gym this evening.

Doctor – Ah, that would explain it. I wish all my patients were as health-conscious as you, Mr Trotter.

Del – Oh mais oui, mais oui. What d’you reckon the pains are then, doc?

Doctor – To tell you the truth I’m not sure. I’d like you to go down to the local hospital and have a few tests done.

Del – OK. I’ll make an appointment tomorrow morning then, shall I?

Doctor – No, I’d like you to go now.

Del – Now? What? D’you mean this minute?

Doctor – Yes. You may have a grumbling appendix. Now I emphasize the word ‘may’. If that should prove to be the case we have to remove it as quickly as possible.

Del – You mean cut it out?

Doctor – Yes, I mean cut it out.

Del – But it might not be me appendix?

Doctor – Maybe.

Del – So if it’s not me appendix, what else could it be?

Doctor – Well, let’s not speculate.

Del – Let’s hope it’s not me appendix then, shall we? I don’t have to go by ambulance, do I?

Doctor – No, but I don’t want you jogging there. You can call a minicab.

She turns her back to Del and collects some files.

Del – No, that’s alright. I’ll give my brother a bell. He’ll drive me down there.

Doctor – I’ll call the hospital and tell them you’re on your way.

She turns, arm outstretched to pick up the receiver from her desk phone.

She reacts as Del has already picked it up and is about to dial.

Doctor – I’ll use the phone in reception.

Del – Yeah, alright then, doc. (Into receiver) Rodney? Hello Rodders, it’s me, Del Boy. Yes, I’m here at the doctor’s. Yes, listen. There’s nothing to worry about, but I want you to come down here and give me a lift down to the hospital… Yeah, I’ve got to go there right away. Listen, listen. I said there’s nothing to worry about. I don’t want you driving down here at a hundred miles an hour and having an accident, nothing like that… No I can’t phone for a minicab! I don’t care if Neighbours has just started. Look, I am at the quack’s and I just want you to help me a bit… I don’t wanna go on me own… Yeah, alright, I’ll see you in a minute.


Mike – What can I get you, Rodney?

Rodney – A lemonade with ice, non-alcoholic lager top and a small rum, please.

Mike – Any news from the hospital?

Rodney – No, not really. He ain’t got a grumbling appendix. They don’t seem to know what it is. Still, they’re keeping him under observation.

Trigger – Must be horrible that.

Mike – What?

Trigger – Well, lying in bed all day with someone standing there looking at you.

Rodney – No, Trigg, they don’t just keep… Yeah, must be horrible.

Mike – Years ago I had a mate like that. Doctor’s couldn’t find out what was wrong with him.

Rodney – And he died, did he?

Mike – Yeah… (Realises what he has said) Oh no, I’m not saying that Del’s got that.

Rodney – Well let’s hope not, eh? Listen, Mike. We’re going to visit him this evening and he asked if you’d do him a bacon sandwich and lots of brown sauce ‘cos he can’t stand that hospital food.

Mike – But it’ll be cold and greasy by this evening.

Rodney – Yeah, that’s how he likes it, and he also said would you send up a bottle of coke and put some Bacardi in it, so as the old matron won’t suss it?

Mike – Leave it to me, Rodney.

Rodney moves to the table where we see Cassandra and Albert.

Rodney places the drinks on the table and sits. Nothing is said between them.

Cassandra – Cheer up a little bit, Rodney. I mean, Del’s in the best place, isn’t he?

Rodney – Oh yeah, he’s in the best place. I just wish they knew what was wrong with him. Maybe on second thoughts I don’t wanna know what’s wrong with him.

Albert – When I was stationed out in New Guinea…

Rodney & Cassandra – Oh God.

Albert – A crew-mate of mine went down with a mysterious tummy bug just like Del’s. The finest medical brains in Jayapura couldn’t make out what it was.

Rodney – No? (To Cassandra) Your dad still thinking about buying that new jag?

Cassandra – He’s looking at one tomorrow.

Rodney – Yeah?

Cassandra – Yeah.

Albert – Until this American surgeon arrived on the scene. He twigged it straight away.

Cassandra – And what was it?

Albert – Green parrot’s disease.

Rodney – Well, that’s certainly worth knowing, Albert. Thank you very much.

Cassandra – Are you going to tell the doctor in charge of Del’s case? You know, he might not have thought of it.

Rodney – No, that would have been one of the first things he would have thought… How the hell’s Del gonna get green parrot’s disease in Peckham?

Albert – Well, I admit it’s a long shot. I’m just grabbing at straws, I s’pose.

Rodney – Yeah, yeah, we all are Unc. I’m sorry.

Albert – I’m gonna put a drop of blackcurrant in this.

Cassandra – Can I visit Del with you this evening?

Rodney – Yeah, okay. It’s worth the journey just to see his pyjamas. He’s never been ill before. Well you know, he’s been ill but he’s never been to hospital. He’s terrified of ’em. He got stabbed once outside a dance hall. There was blood all over his shirt, a four-inch gash in his shoulder. But he never went to hospital.

Cassandra – He didn’t have it treated?

Rodney – No he did it himself. TCP and a flannel.

Cassandra – Did he know the person who did it?

Rodney – Yeah.

Cassandra – And I bet he didn’t report it to the police?

Rodney – No. Well, he couldn’t really. He was engaged to her at the time. I prayed last night, prayed Del wouldn’t die.

Cassandra – Rodney, that’s not going to happen.

Rodney – No, no, I know. Soon as I done it I thought, ‘That’s stupid, Del ain’t gonna die… He’s not the type.’


On Del’s bedside table we have a few get-well-soon cards and a large bottle of Coca-Cola. Rodney, Cassandra and Albert are seated around the bed.

Del – So anyway, they took some more samples this afternoon. Samples of me blood, sample of me… samples of everything. Now I’m supposed to fast for 24 hours.

Cassandra – Well, why’s that? Are they running more tests tomorrow?

Del – Yeah, I tell you what, I’ll be 12 pound, three gallons lighter then when I come in, I know that.

Now from beneath the bed covers, Del produces the bacon sandwich that Rodney asked for in previous scene.

Rodney – What you doing? You’re not supposed to be eating that.

Del – I know, Rodney, but this fasting makes you hungry.

Cassandra – But it could affect the results of the tests.

Albert – Give over gel. It’s only a bacon sandwich and a bit of brown sauce.

Del – Exactly, besides, it was in the local paper a while back, this is one of the few hospitals in Britain that has not been equipped with a bacon sandwich detector!

Rodney – I don’t believe you, Derek! When a doctor says you’re supposed to fast for 24 hours then you should fast for 24 hours.

Del – Well, what you bring this sandwich in for then?

Rodney – ‘Cos I didn’t know you were supposed to be fasting. And you’re not supposed to be drinking that either. It’s got Bacardi in it.

Del – Ssshhh! Keep your noise down, will yer? Listen, with the sort of measures Mike gives, there’s less spirits in that than there was at our séance. Oh that reminds me. Wasn’t last night the pukka séance night?

Rodney – (Half-hearted) Yeah.

Del – Did it go well?

Rodney – Er… not quite as well as we’d expected.

Albert – It was a total cock-up from where I was standing.

Del – Well, somebody tell me.

Cassandra – Well, you now those posters you put in the pub windows with The Séance and the ghostly face?

Del – Yeah, yeah.

Cassandra – Well a lot of people got the wrong impression. They thought The Séance was a group.

Rodney – The place was packed with punk rockers. There was Special Brew everywhere, people shouting ‘Aceed’, all that.

Cassandra – They were expecting to see an ‘Iron Maiden’-type band.

Rodney – Then Elsie Partridge walked out in her hat. They weren’t best pleased, Del. Fortunately she remained in a trance throughout the riot.

Albert – She was still in it this morning when I went round to her flat.

Del – Innit amazing? I only organised that séance out of the goodness of my heart. I just wanted to help people to overcome their loss, and how do they thank me? They chuck it in my face!

Rodney – Still, at least you tried.

A bell rings.

Albert – Visiting time’s over. Can’t say I’m disappointed, I hate these places, death and sickness everywhere.

Del – Yeah, they ain’t all they’re cracked up to be, Unc. Take care. (Kisses Cassandra) Bye-bye, sweetheart. (Referring to Rodney) Thanks for coming. Look after him now, will you?

Cassandra – Yeah, I’ll see he’s alright. I hope you feel better soon, Del.

Del – There’s nothing wrong with me. I don’t know what I’m doing in here.

Rodney – I’ll see you tomorrow, mate.

Del – (To Cassandra and Albert) Yeah. (To Rodney) Hang around a minute, bruv.

Cassandra and Albert exit.

Del is smiling as he waves goodbye to them.

Rodney – I’ll see you outside. What’s up?

Del suddenly turns into a frightened schoolboy.

Del – I’m scared, Rodney!

Rodney – Oh come on, Del. You’re in hospital.

Del – That’s why I’m scared!

Rodney – I mean, can you think of a better place to be?

Del – Yes, down the market, in the pub, anywhere but here. I think I might know what’s wrong with me.

A short pause.

Rodney – What?

Del – I think I might have… you know.

Rodney – You mean?

Del – No.

Rodney – What! Not…

Del – Yes.

Rodney – Don’t be silly. What makes you think that?

Del – Because the doctors found out I was a bachelor and they started asking questions about my social activities.

Rodney – Bloody ‘ell.

Del – It’s alright. I didn’t tell ’em nothing. I made out I was like an amateur monk. But I’ve been lying here thinking about my past.

Rodney – What’s the point in depressing yourself?

Del – I’ve bin thinking back to some of the birds I’ve knocked about with. Cor blimey, Rodney, some of ’em have bin round the track more times than a lurcher.

Rodney – Del, you’re just being irrational.

Del – What about that unisex hair-dresser’s. down the high street?

Rodney – Well, what about it?

Del – Well, I went in there last month for a trim, didn’t I? And I thought I was going to get one of the dolly birds in the miniskirts, you know, and all that, but who did I get? They gave me some mush called Jason.

Rodney – So?

Del – So, say he was a bandit.

Rodney – I don’t believe… Del, you cannot go around making accusations against innocent people. Anyway, you can’t catch it off a comb.

Del – No, but say he nicked my neck with his razor or something.

Rodney – So long as he doesn’t kiss it better, you’re laughing, ain’t you?

Del – Then there’s Uncle Albert – blimey, he’s been round the world more times than Phileas Fogg. There’s no telling what he might have picked up. And there’s you and that computer.

Rodney – My computer?

Del – Yes. I was reading about all those computer viruses.

Rodney – Look, calm down, right? Look, I understand your concerns and fears. But you’re just letting your imagination run away with you. If you’d had ‘that’ or anything as serious as that, they would have known by now. They’re experts you know.

Del – Yeah, yeah. I didn’t think of that, bruv. It can’t be that serious, can it?

Rodney – Well, of course not. So you just remember that next time you’re lying here at night, thinking of all them women and male hairdressers you’ve known…

Del – They’ve got a spare bed downstairs if you’re interested.

Rodney – I’ll see you.

They share a smile. Rodney stands to leave. Del leans back in bed. We now hear Del moan as if in great pain. Rodney rushes back to him.

Rodney – Del, hold on. I’ll get the nurse. Nurse! Hold on, Del, don’t you die. Don’t you bloody die.

Del – I’m not gonna die, you plonker. I’ve just sat on me bacon sandwich.


Del is sitting upright in bed. A tray holding his lunch is across his lap. A nurse arrives at Del’s bed.

Nurse – Aren’t you eating that?

Del – No, I’m not in the mood, sweetheart.

Nurse – That’s fresh fish.

Del – I know it’s fresh, it just winked at me.

Nurse – I’ll have to tell matron.

Del – No it’s alright. It didn’t really ink at me.

Nurse – No, I mean if a patient doesn’t eat his food I have to report it.

Del – Oh go on, then, you go and grass me up. I’m not frightened of the old cow. Oh, by the way, any news about my application for a bed bath?

Nurse – Sorry.

Dr Meadows enters. He is in his mid-to-alte thirties. Meadows is a dedicated doctor who relaxes with the occasional punch-up.

Dr Meadows – You’ve gotta make a decision, Mr Trotter. We can either save you or the baby.

Del – Robbie Meadows, you old git.

Dr Meadows – Please, Del, not in front of the staff.

Del – Oh yeah, sorry. Dr Meadows, you old git. What brings you up here?

Dr Meadows – I’ve got good news and bad news, Del. The good news is they’ve put me in charge of your case.

Del – What’s the bad news?

Dr Meadows – I specialise in amputation.

Dr Meadows laughs like a drain. Del produces a very false and weak laugh.

Del – Oh that’s a good ‘un. Here, d’you still get down the One-Eleven Club?

Dr Meadows – No, not any more, Del. I’ve packed gambling in, it’s a mug’s game. D’you still go down there?

Del – Oh yeah. Anyway, how comes they’ve put you in charge?

Dr Meadows – It was an accident, really. I just happened to be talking to some colleagues when the name Derek Trotter cropped up. So I asked if I could read your GP’s report and have a look at your tests. I was amazed. I found myself reading about this non-smoking, teetotal, celibate vegetarian health freak. I thought, ‘Can this be the same Derek Trotter that I know and begrudgingly admire? That uptight, wheeling-dealing, pinacolada lout? The Castella king, the curry connoisseur? The same an who has lived his life on nervous tension, fried bread and doubtful women?

Del – And was it?

Dr Meadows – Yes, it was. Why did you lie to your GP, Del?

Del – ‘Cos she’s a doctor.

Dr Meadows – I don’t understand.

Del – Well, you never tell doctors the truth, do yer? Otherwise you’ll end up in hospital.

Dr Meadows – But you are in hospital.

Del – No, but I didn’t mean that to happen, did I? I just wanted her to give me a bottle of jollop.

Dr Meadows – Del, if you’d told the truth in the first place, my colleagues could have diagnosed your problem in a quarter of the time. As it was, they thought they were dealing with the perfect man – but all the time it was you! It confused them Del. It threw ’em onto the wrong track.

Del – Well, I told her I did admit to having a cigar at Christmas time.

Dr Meadows – What about the other 10,000 throughout the rest of the year? Oh that reminds me, we found your cigar-holder in the body-scanner.

Del – Oh cheers Robbie. Must have fallen out of me robe.

Dr Meadows – We know what’s wrong with you, Del.

Del – Right… Let’s hear the worst. I can take it, I’m not frightened. Don’t pull any punches. I want it straight from the shoulder.

Dr Meadows – Yeah, I think it’s best in the long run. Well, basically, Derek, there’s nothing wrong with you.

Del – Oh, oh thank God! Thank God. Thank Allah, thank Buddha. Thank you, thank you, God.

Dr Meadows – Relieved, eh?

Del – Well, you know. So what about all these pains I’ve been getting?

Dr Meadows – You have an irritable bowel.

Del – Well, I’m not surprised with you lot pulling me about.

Dr Meadows – No, no. That’s what your condition is called. You have irritable bowel syndrome. It’s nothing serious. I’ll put you on a course of drugs. Your condition has been caused by your lifestyle. The late nights, the booze, the nicotine, the fried fast foods. Do you ever think about all the saturated fat floating around your arteries?

Del – I try not to. It puts me off me grub.

Dr Meadows – One of the major contributory factors of this syndrome is stress. A lot of yuppies suffer from it.

Del – Yeah?

Dr Meadows – Del, I took the liberty of phoning the director of housing about your rent arrears.

Del – How’d you find out?

Dr Meadows – I phoned your flat. I’m sorry, mate, I had to find out what the hell was going on. I spoke to your uncle. The council have agreed to give you some breathing space, a bit of time to get yourself together.

Del – Cheers, Robbie.

Dr Meadows – You’ve been given a warning, Del. Nature’s little way of telling you to eat muesli for breakfast. Cut right down on the drink and cigars. Start eating wholesome, real food and above all else learn to relax. Doctor’s orders.

Del – Whatever you say.

Dr Meadows – Pop this into the pharmacy on your way home.

Del – I can go?

Dr Meadows – Yes, and don’t come back. I want you convalescing for the next three weeks. I don’t want you working or getting excited. Sit in a chair, eat boring foods and live a boring life.

Del – Well, that’ll be easy. I can talk to my Uncle.

Dr Meadows – See you around, Del.

Del – Yeah, and… thanks, Robbie. (To himself) I knew there was nothing wrong with me.

Dr. Meadows smiles and exits, and the relief and gratitude comes flooding out. Del’s bottom lip quivers. He moves momentarily puts his hands to his eyes. Then quickly pulls himself together.

Del – (Cont’d) (Telling himself off) Silly old sod.


Del is sitting in the armchair watching TV. He is wearing pyjamas and has a blanket over his legs. He is bored, bored, bored, bored, bored.

Albert enters from the kitchen carrying a breakfast tray.

Albert – Here you are, Del, breakfast.

Del – Oh good. What is it?

Albert – It’s muesli.

Del – Blimey! It looks like something that’s bin swept out of a pigeon loft.

Albert – You can at least try it.

Del eats some of the muesli.

Del – It tastes like it’s been swept out of a pigeon loft. I can’t eat this for the rest of my life. I’d rather croak it than eat this rubbish.

Albert – Well, don’t get excited, you’ll bring your pains back on. All the quack said was you’ve got to get a sensible diet, and muesli’s just part of it.

Del – Alright, alright, Unc, alright.

Albert – I’ll do you a cup of tea, son.

Albert exits to the kitchen. Del reaches for his pack of cigars.

Del – How many cigars am I allowed a day?

Albert – She said three.

Del – How many have I had?

Albert – Four.

Rodney enters from hall.

Rodney – Alright?

Del – Yeah, triffic, Rodders.

Rodney – Oh what’s up with you now?

Del – I am not ill, okay? All that happened was that I caught a syndrome. But you two are treating me like an invalid.

Rodney – We are not treating you like an invalid Del, we are just trying to do our best by you.

Del – Yes, I’m sorry, Rodders.

Rodney – That’s alright. (To Albert in kitchen) Albert I’ve got the Complan.

Rodney places the packet of Complan on the table and then turns to Del. Rodney (Cont’d) So you feeling relaxed?

Del – Yes. All over, thank you.

Rodney – Good, ‘cos I have got some really great news.

Del – What’s that?

Rodney – Guess what? I’m getting married!

Del clutches his stomach as the pain returns.

Rodney – (Cont’d) Albert!

More Episode from this series of OFAH: