When the Boat Comes In

Season 1 Episode 5

Coal Comfort

Aired Tuesday 8:10 PM Feb 05, 1976 on BBC
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Episode Summary

Coal Comfort
With the strike continuing people are forced to steal coal. When Jack Ford brings some coal round for the Seatons which he has bought off someone, Bill Seaton tells him to take it away as it is the same as paying the mine owners and is helping them instead of the strikers. It then occurs to Bill Seaton that he thinks there could be coal under the house, so he sets about digging up the front room. Billy Seaton has returned from university in Edinburgh saying he no longer wants to be a doctor and that he can work down the pit like the rest of them. Jessie and Tom try telling him that he's crazy but he won't listen. His father says he can do what he wants, which infuriates Jessie, but her mother tells her that their father will sort it out given time. Tom Seaton's leeks are stolen from his allotment and he and Billy track them down to a house where there is a mother and two young boys who are starving as she doesn't get a widow's pension. He decides it's okay for them to take his leeks whenever they need them .Billy offers to help with the digging in the front room but is told he's useless. Billy gets a neighbour's pump to pump out water in the hole which he operates while the rest have a break whilst watching him work. Billy goes on about Socialism which interrupts his pumping, causing his father to keep pointing out that he is useless and wouldn't be treated any differently if he worked in the pit because he is not a tradesman and merely an unskilled college boy. Billy finally gets the message that he would be better as a socialist doctor. Jack Ford turns up with some rabbits he has stolen and they all celebrate.moreless

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