June, 1813 The South Essex is seriously short of men, and when Wellingtion is told there are no recruits available, he orders Sharpe to go to England to investigate. Sharpe and Harper arrive in England and are informed that there are seven hundred men waiting for them in Chelmsford. On arrival there, they find the barracks deserted. While visiting an old friend, Harper and Sharpe are attacked, and Sharpe feigns death. Sharpe and Harper then decide to do some undercover work and enlist under Sergeant Havercamp as new recruits. They arrive at a training camp on Sir Henry Simmerson's land, where they are trained mercilessly. Sharpe finds the new recruits are being sold to other regiments, and his suspicions are confirmed by Simmerson's niece, Jane.moreless
Sketches include "European Song Contest" with Benny playing all the parts (including hostess Katie Boiler), a tribute to the Lower Tidmarsh Volunteer Hospital Service (with Jackie Wright as the unlucky patient), and a newlywed couple (Hill, Eira Heath) whose honeymoon suite is divided between American and Russian zones. Also: The Ladybirds sing "Goin' Out of My Head."moreless
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