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Publisher's Summary

Penelope Keith stars in the much-loved sitcom about an aristocrat forced to part with her family home.

When her husband's death leaves her financially strapped, Audrey Fforbes-Hamilton has no choice but to sell her beloved Grantleigh Estate. With butler Brabinger in tow, she decamps to the tiny Old Lodge cottage, where she keeps a close - and disapproving - eye on the new squire: the nouveau riche Richard DeVere, a wholesale food magnate of Czech descent. 

In these 10 episodes, Audrey attempts to educate the usurper in the ways of the Lord of the Manor - but as she tries to put DeVere in his place, she discovers he's no pushover.... Will it be happy ever after for the indomitable aristocrat and the dashing, self-made millionaire? 

This classic comedy was originally intended for radio but was transferred to TV instead where it ran for three highly successful series between 1979 and 1981, attracting almost 25 million viewers for its final episode. The show finally returned home to Radio 2 in 1997, adapted by Peter Spence from his own TV scripts. Penelope Keith and Angela Thorne reprise their starring roles as Audrey Fforbes-Hamilton and Marjory Frobisher, with Keith Barron as Richard DeVere.

Production credits

Written and adapted by Peter Spence

Produced by Jane Berthoud

First broadcast BBC Radio 2, 25th January-29th March 1997


Audrey Fforbes-Hamilton - Penelope Keith

Richard DeVere - Keith Barron

Marjory Frobisher - Angela Thorne

Brabinger - Nicholas McArdle

Mrs Polouvicka - Margery Withers

Ned - Frank Middlemass

Mrs Plunkett/Podge Hodge - Zulema Dene

Dr Horton - Geoffrey Whitehead

Receptionist - Melanie Hudson

Mademoiselle Dutoit - Rula Lenska

PC Dottle - Kevin Eldon

Brigadier - Jonathan Adams

©2020 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd (P)2020 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd

What listeners say about To the Manor Born

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • pumbaesque
  • 29-12-2020


I loved this series and was very excited to buy the audible version. While Penelope Keith delivers as always, I was most disappointed that the other voices were not from the original actors, well definitely not Peter Bowles anyway, nor Mrs Poole. (maybe my own fault for not checking). Also, it doesn't include all the episodes. Disappointing.

I've given 2 stars for performance mainly because I felt that some of the drafted in people were not as good as the original ones. Penelope Keith gets five stars. The story is, well, the story. Having left out a lot, and especially the first episode, this audible book waters down things too much

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 12-01-2021

A trip down memory lane!

I remember watching this wonderful series every Sunday night 🌙 with my parents back in the seventies, so was thrilled when I saw that it was on audible. I wasn't disappointed, actors and stories are really brilliant! it brought back a sense of nostalgia and just reminded me of those Sunday night's sitting in front of the tv 📺. Wonderful 👍

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • CVP57
  • 24-12-2020


loved this. A good reminder of the T.V series i watched many years ago. Brilliant.

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