The House of Eliott

Season 3 Episode 8

Episode Thirty-Two

Aired Unknown Feb 20, 1993 on BBC

Episode Recap

Press interest in the House of Eliott continues as they face journalists' questions about the exploitation of their workers.

Following the revelations about Betty's involvement with the Crystal collection, the sisters demand that she confess all she knows when she appears for work one morning. Betty claims she believed the extra work was on the Aurora collection. When she did notice some different outfits, Grace bribed her to keep silent by promising her a highly paid job. The sisters don't accept Betty's explanation. When Betty offers them information about Grace and Larry's whereabouts on the proviso she is allowed to keep her job, she is sacked. Not surprisingly, there is a great deal of animosity towards Betty from her colleagues in the workroom.

Evie expresses a desire to close the ready to wear business, but Bea is determined to keep it going and wants to sue Larry and Grace in order to save their reputation. However, the solicitor tells them legal action would prove useless. To recoup some of their losses, they decide to sell the Aurora collection to retailers in the USA. Bea and Evie realise that if they are to save the House of Eliott name, Larry and Grace's deception must be exposed. They accept the only way this can be achieved is through the assistance of Betty.

Bea and Evie decide to adapt their old couture collection designs into ready to wear. Miles is offered Grace's job and he welcomes the opportunity to increase his involvement. Between the three of them they find inspiration for a new collection.

Tilly begins to make mistakes in her work as she remains distracted over the loss of William. Madge tries to talk with her but receives a dismissive response. Eventually, Charles and Madge approach Norman and explain that Tilly's job may be at risk if things don't improve. As Norman finds talking with Tilly futile, he asks the vicar to intervene. The vicar visits Tilly to reassure her and tries to tell her that she needs to move on if she is to save her marriage. Tilly is angered at Norman's interference but he is adamant that he was only trying to help. When he arrives home one evening, he finds a repentant Tilly. She has removed the crib from the room and wants things to change.

At the 'Pig and Whistle', Agnes continues to pursue her singing career and proves to be a popular success. She strikes up a friendship with Barney, the resident pianist. With his support, Agnes' ambitions grow.

Jack is placed in a very awkward situation when his political peers are furious about his apparent association with the exploitation of workers. He tries to explain his wife's misrepresentation in the press and offers to describe the extenuating circumstances to factory owners to help them avoid a similar scandal.

Bea and Evie pay Betty a visit and agree to her demands; she has her old job back and they get the information they need. It emerges that Larry and Grace have been bribing purchasers to take the Crystal collection. Betty also tells them Grace and Larry plan to sell new designs over the next few days. Bea and Evie take evidence of the bribery to the storeowners. When Larry and Grace try to sell their new clothes they are forced to deal with a new purchaser. As they try to strike up a new deal they effectively expose their corrupt business practices. Their reputation is ruined and they are forced to take their unscrupulous behaviour to another town. Bea immediately contacts the press to give them a scoop on the bribery story and vindicate the House of Eliott.

The workroom is shocked to see Betty back at work. Joseph is outraged by the sisters' decision but they stand by what they have done. Katya is promoted to work at the Bayswater workshop.

When the article revealing Larry and Grace's deception is published, Jack is relieved. However, Bea is piqued as she believes the only reason for his relief is because it will help to restore his political credibility. She feels his failure to defend the House of Eliott was an act of disloyalty. He restates that he has a moral obligation to expose inappropriate working conditions and incorporates the evidence from the article into the speech that he is writing. When he gives the speech it is a resounding success and he is asked again to join the Independent Labour Party.

Bea, Jack, Evie and Daniel are invited to spend the weekend with an influential client from the House of Eliott. Daniel does not want to go as he feels he will not fit in, but eventually he concedes. At the gathering, Jack faces tough criticism from guests who do not support his political ideas but he handles the situation with decorum. However, Daniel becomes increasingly frustrated with what he sees as arrogance and ignores Jack's advice to stop drinking. Evie tries to warn him about his behaviour but he becomes offensive and ends up causing a scene. When Evie walks off, he succeeds in ripping her dress. Bea tires to reassure Evie as she helps repair the damage. The hostess of the party is heard gossiping about Daniel's outrageous behaviour and Evie's reputation. An infuriated Bea forces herself to interject, jumping to Evie and Daniel's defence. She also apologises to Evie for her treatment of Daniel in the past. Evie goes to bed early, as do Jack and Bea, leaving Daniel to ruminate over his actions on his own.

Jack tells Bea he is considering running for Parliament. She expresses reservations about the time he would spend away from her, Lucy and the House of Eliott and the inevitable press attention they would receive. As there is not an election due for eighteen months they agree to take time to consider. But she admits that, if he were to be elected, she would be exceptionally proud of him.

Unable to sleep, Daniel sneaks into Evie's room. He apologises for his outlandish behaviour but explains that he cannot present the social facade she does in order to impress. Despite their contrasting backgrounds, they agree to marry.