Malcolm Bradbury

  • Patterson

    • Christopher Bigsby

    • Malcolm Bradbury

    • Judy Parfitt (Read by)

    • Lewis Fiander (Read by)

    • Richard Vernon (Read by)

    • Maggie Steed (Read by)

    • Maureen Lipman (Read by)

    • Full cast (Read by)

    An eight-part comedy serial set in a provincial university with a most unusual English department

    Against his better judgement, Andrew Patterson accepts a job as a lecturer in English literature at a remote Northern redbrick university. His departmental colleagues are an eccentric bunch: doddery Head of English Professor Misty, who looks like he went to school with Little Dorrit; Amy Spade, who's suffering from an identity crisis and given to sending anonymous letters, and man-eating Melissa Murgatroyd, the honeypot of the Senior Common Room. Fortunately, Patterson has old friend and fellow lecturer Victor to show him the ropes - but even so, his first day does not go well.

    University life continues to throw up bewildering challenges, from tracking down Misty's lawnmower to surviving his inaugural lecture, writing a soft porn novel and dealing with the demands (both erotic and otherwise) of his students. Meanwhile, his wife Jane is becoming worryingly keen on their nerdy neighbour Cuthbertson, and the English department is in crisis... Can Patterson salvage his marriage and make it through term without getting fired?

    Written by acclaimed authors Malcolm Bradbury and Christopher Bigsby, both former university lecturers, this lively campus comedy was the first sitcom to be broadcast on BBC Radio 3. Australian Lewis Fiander stars as the hapless Patterson, with John Barron as the Vice-Chancellor, Richard Vernon as Professor Misty and Maureen Lipman as Melissa.

    Production credits
    Written by Malcolm Bradbury and Christopher Bigsby
    Produced by Geoffrey Perkins
    Theme music: 'Jester's Jig' by Gordon Giltrap

    Patterson - Lewis Fiander
    Vice-Chancellor - John Barron
    Professor Misty - Richard Vernon
    Jane - Judy Parfitt
    Melissa - Maureen Lipman
    Cuthbertson - Richard O'Callaghan
    Victor - Hugh Thomas
    Amy Spade/Cleaner - Maggie Steed
    Probity - Jack May
    Mary/Lady Professor/Mrs Jackson/Mrs Misty/Verity - Frances Jeater
    Mrs Vice-Chancellor - Irene Prador
    Sandra - Liza Hayden
    Bannerji - Tariq Yunus
    Jake - Philip Davis
    Valerie Candle - Leueen Willoughby
    Inspector Firestone - David Tate
    Ancient boy - Patrick Barr
    Hotel manager - Rowland Davies
    Landlady - Patricia Hayes

    First broadcast BBC Radio 3, 19 February-9 April 1981

    ©2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd (P)2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd

Edward Morgan Forster was born in London in 1879. He wrote six novels, four of which appeared before the First World War, Where Angels Fear to Tread (1905), The Longest Journey (1907), A Room with a View (1908), and Howard’s End (1910). An interval of fourteen years elapsed before he published A Passage to India. Maurice, his novel on a homosexual theme, finished in 1914, was published posthumously in 1971. Malcolm Bradbury was a novelist, critic, television dramatist and Emeritus Professor of American Studies at the University of East Anglia. He is author of the novels Eating People is Wrong (1959); Stepping Westward (1965); The History Man (1975); Rates of Exchange (1983) which was shortlisted for the Booker Prize; Cuts: A Very Short Novel (1987); and Doctor Criminale (1992). His critical works include The Modern American Novel (1984; revised edition, 1992); No, Not Bloomsbury (essays, 1987); The Modern world: Ten Great Writers (1988); From Puritanism to Post-modernism: A History of American Literature (with Richard Ruland, 1991).

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