Airdate: Return to Cranford

UKTV has the Australian premiere of Return to Cranford with Judi Dench, Imelda Staunton and more.

Acclaimed UK drama Cranford is back with further instalments of its period tales with its divine cast of Judi Dench, Julia McKenzie, Imelda Staunton and more.

Return to Cranford aired as a 2 part Christmas special in the UK in 2009. The new stories, which were written by Heidi Thomas and directed by Simon Curtis, took place in August 1844; a year after the wedding of Sophy Hutton and Dr Harrison.

This will be its Australian premiere.

Cranford, is where all changes and all remains the same, and Miss Matty’s house is full of life and bustle. In the year since her sister’s death, she has had the joy of seeing her brother, Peter, return from India and her dream of having a child in the house realised in the birth of Tilly, daughter of her maid Martha and carpenter Jem.

She relishes every moment being the centre of such a busy household. The shadow of the railway still looms but, to the relief of Matty and the Amazons, the line has been halted five miles outside Cranford because of Lady Ludlow’s continued refusal to sell the land that would connect it to the town. For others, however, this spells disaster: Captain Brown believes that modernisation is inevitable if the town is to survive and knows that the young people, like Jem, will have to move to find work.

However, Matty is delighted to see the return to Cranford, after an absence of two years, of her dear friend, Mr Buxton, with his son, William, and his niece, Erminia. The recent death of Mrs Buxton has left both husband and son grief-stricken and at odds with each other. Mr Buxton has hopes of a parliamentary career and an advantageous marriage for his son. But William has ideas of his own.

Matty is concerned about another young person. Peggy Bell lives in an isolated cottage outside the town with her mother and domineering, ambitious brother, Edward. Matty fears Peggy has no friends and is in danger of becoming too inward-looking and as isolated as their cottage.

She decides to intervene and engineers an invitation that will bring the four young people together. But, as tragedy strikes, she comes to believe that, unwittingly, she has opened Pandora’s box and fears that Cranford will never recover.

Starring: Judi Dench (Notes on a Scandal, Casino Royale, Shakespeare in Love), Francesca Annis (Jane Eyre, Revolver, Wives and Daughters), Alex Jennings (The Queen, The State Within, Babel), Julia McKenzie (Notes on a Scandal, Bright Young Things, Celebration), Imelda Staunton (Vera Drake, Harry Potter…, Fingersmith).

It airs at 6pm Sunday July 11 on UKTV.

4 Responses

  1. i saw this when i was in UK at xmas. Sad to say after loving the first series I was bored with the first part of this new ep and didn’t watch the 2nd part. Maybe I was just in a holiday mode and not in the mood for it.

  2. Thanks yet again David for posting the return of Cranford. I was hoping it would be aired by UKTV eventually.
    I’m alreadly looking forward to the return of this great series, brilliant acting and direction.

  3. With the amazing Andrew Buchan also onboard again! He really is The Fixer this time – he plays Jem the carpenter! So great to see us getting this – taken a while but its better late than never!! Just such a great cast and nice storytelling!!

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