(Sketch continues from the Lifeboat Sketch. We still hear the
shouts. Close up on an elderly spinster (Gladys) holding the net
curtain discreetly ajar.)
Enid: Who's that shouting?
(We pull out to reveal a sitting room full of high-powered
eavesdropping equipment, i.e. an enormous telescope on wheels with a
controller's chair attached to it, several subsidiary telescopes
pointing out of the window, radar scanners going round and round,
two computers with flashing lights, large and complex tape and video
recorders, several TV monitors, oscilloscopes, aerials, etc. All
these have been squeezed in amongst the furniture of two retired
middle-class old ladies. Enid, a dear old lady with a bun, sits at
the control seat of an impressive-looking console, pressing buttons.
She also has some knitting.)
Gladys: (JOHN) It's a man outside Number 24.
Enid: Try it on the five inch, Gladys.
Gladys: (looking at the array of telescopes) I
can't. I've got that fixed on the Baileys at Number 13. Their new
lodger moves in today.
Enid: All fight, hold 13 on the five-inch and transfer the
Cartwrights to the digital scanner.
(Gladys leaps over to the tape deck, presses levers and
switches. Sound of tape reversing. There is a hum and lights flash
on and off. A blurred image of a lady in the street comes up on one
of the monitors.)
Enid: Hold on, Mrs. Pettigrew's coming back from the
Gladys: All right, bring her up on two. What's the
duration reading on the oscillator?
Gladys: Well that's a long time for someone who's just had
a routine checkup.
Enid: (reading a graph on a computer) Yes, her
pulse rate's 146!
Gladys: Zoom in on the 16mm and hold her, Enid.
Enid: Roger, Gladys.
Gladys: I'll try and get her on the twelve-inch. (she
climbs into the control seat of the huge mobile telescope; we cut to
the view through Gladys's telescope - out of focus at first, but
then sharper as she zooms in towards the side door of Number 24)
Move the curtain, Enid. (the curtain is opened a little)
Thank you, love.
(Cut to the interior of Mrs. Neves's kitchen once again. It is
absolutely full of lifeboatmen. They are all talking happily and
drinking cups of tea. We pick up the conversation between two them.)
First Lifeboatman: Yes, it's one of those new
self-righting models. Newhaven was about the first place in the
country to get one.
Second Lifeboatman: What's the displacement on one of them
First Lifeboatman: Oh it's about I40-150 per square inch.
Mrs. Neves: Who's for fruit cake?
All: Oh yes, please, please.
Mrs. Neves: Yes, right, macaroons, that's two dozen fruit
cakes, half a dozen macaroons. Right ho. Won't be a jiffy then.
(She puts a scarf on, picks up a basket and goes out of the
front door. As she opens door, we hear the sound of a storm which
carries us into the next shot. Cut to the deck of a lifeboat;
rain-lashed, heaving, wind-tossed Mrs. Neves struggles against the
gale force winds along the deck. She hammers on a hatch in the
forward part of the lifeboat.)
Mrs. Neves: Yoohoo! Mrs. Edwards!
(The hatch opens and a cozy shop-keeping pepperpot sticks her
Mrs. Edwards: Hello.
Mrs. Neves: Hello, two dozen fruit cakes and half a dozen
Mrs. Edwards: Sorry love, no macaroons. How about a nice
Mrs. Neves: Yes, that'll be lovely.
Mrs. Edwards: Right ho. (sound of a ship's horn; they
both look) There's that nice herring trawler come for their Kup
Kakes. Excuse me. (she produces a loudhailer) Hello, Captain
(Mrs. Edwards hurls a box of Kup Kakes off deck.)
Mrs. Edwards: Kup Kakes to starboard.
Mrs. Neves: I'll pay you at the end of the week, all
Mrs. Edwards: OK, right ho.
(Mrs. Neves struggles back along the deck. Cut to stock film
of Ark Royal in a storm.)
Mrs. Neves: Here; it's the Ark Royal, Doris. Have you got
their rock buns ready?
(Sound of a ship's horn.)
Mrs. Edwards: Hang on!
(Doris appears at the hatch, and hands over two cake boxes.)
Doris: Here we are, five for them and five for HMS Eagle.
Mrs. Edwards: Right ho. (takes them and throws them
both overboard; an officer climbs up the side of the boat) Yes?
Officer: HMS Defiant? Two set teas please.
Mrs. Edwards: Two set teas, Doris. Forty-eight pence.
There we are, thank you.
(Money is handed over. The teas emerge on two little trays
with delicate crockery, little teapots, milk jugs, etc.)
Officer: By the way, do you do lunches?
Mrs. Edwards: No, morning coffee and teas only.
Officer: Right ho. (holding the teas he goes up to edge
and jumps overboard)