When Doreen's bright idea starts a fire, Bea rescues Steve. Meanwhile Chrissie falls out with her sister-in-law and finds her dole fiddle on shaky ground.

First broadcast ... 1982 (Melbourne)
Broadcast on Channel 5 Wednesday 03 June 1998 04:40
DVD release: volume 18 disc 4 (AUS)
Duration: 0:45:21

Meg ~ Elspeth Ballantyne
Judy ~ Betty Bobbitt
Lizzie ~ Sheila Florance
Erica ~ Patsy King
Bea ~ Val Lehman
Doreen ~ Colette Mann
Off. Powell ~ Judith McGrath
Steve ~ Wayne Jarratt
Susie ~ Jacqui Gordon
Helen ~ Caroline Gillmer
Chrissie ~ Amanda Muggleton
Brenda ~ Jan Friedl
Mr Douglas ~ Ian Smith
Sister Franklin ~ Diana Greentree
Wendy Scott ~ Helen Noonan
Faye Quinn ~ Anne Lucas
Parole Board Chairman ~ Lawrence Held
Off. Barry ~ Joy Westmore
Social Security Insp. ~ Neil McColl
Solicitor ~ Robin Cuming
Fireman ~ Robert Ruggiero
Counter Officer ~ Ian Walker

  • Written by Wendy Jackson
  • Directed by John Duncan
  • I have corrected the credit for "Fay" "Quin" played by "Anna" Lucas

    Colleen and Bea find Steve lying unconscious in the corridor. [This is strange as he was facing a cell wall when the explosion occurred, so the blast seems to have knocked him sideways!] Joyce is sent to tell Wendy to call the fire brigade and ambulance. Susie's parole board continues with a fire alarm ringing in the background. Meg speaks up for Susie and says the parole board must recognise her initiative in getting the job for herself. This convinces them and they grant Susie's parole. Sister Franklin tends to Steve's burns, which she says are only superficial, but that he still needs to go to hospital. Colleen drops a heavy hint to Erica that Bea knows something about the fire, so Erica sends Bea to solitary. The fire officer says the fire was started deliberately. Colleen's suspicions about Bea are based on hearing her shout a warning to Steve. While she is being questioning by Erica in solitary, Bea notices the note from Helen is poking out of her jacket pocket, but trying to hide it only draws it to the attention of Colleen who pounces and grabs it. Erica confines her to solitary and tells her she may have to speak to the arson squad. Meg asks the parole board chairman about Judy's parole licence, and he says he can see no problem in reinstating it exactly as it was before if her appeal is successful. Susie overhears Erica in reception talking about the confiscated note to Wendy and asking to be informed when the post will be sent off as she wants to send it to Det. Sgt. Ryan. This information is passed on at lunch, but Judy says they also have to worry about the officers finding the still. Erica is amazed to meet Ted Douglas, who has already been told about the fire and comes to give Erica another little lecture on security. He leaves Erica stunned and resentful: she immediately phones Wendy and tells her to keep their conversation private, as she's decided to do something else with the letter. She puts it back in its original envelope, addressed to the Despatch, and sticks a stamp on it. Meg agrees to help Judy by trying to get her taxi cab licence back, but warns her to stay out of trouble, and well away from any stills. Doreen and Judy decide the still has to be dismantled immediately and while Faye keeps watch they duck inside the boiler room. Judy reconnects the pipes to drain the contents away, pours in some bleach to disguise the smell and hides the copper coils and other paraphernalia inside. Only just in time, as they have to hide while Colleen and Officer Barfield search around and actually look inside the boiler. Helen is brought back to the dining room with the others, and is very disheartened to be told that the letter has been confiscated: she can't even be bothered to write another as she thinks the officers will make sure it never gets out. In the laundry later, Helen finds that the brew has been flushed through the system into the water supply for the washing machine, and even after several rewashings the sheets still stink of it. Lizzie has to spill some bleach on the floor to cover up when Meg comes in. She has bad news for Judy: the transport board won't renew her taxi licence. Bea returns from solitary and urges Helen to write another letter. Meg goes to the CES to enquire about a job for Judy and runs into Chrissie there signing on. The desk clerk reacts with surprise when Meg refers to Chrissie as Latham, and it's obvious she has just used a false name to sign on. When Meg leaves, he is straight on the phone to report it. Doreen finds the article about Helen has been splashed all over the Dispatch: no-one is more puzzled than Bea who recognises it is basically her article for the Stir, but with an extra bit at the end about Det. Sgt. Ryan. Chrissie tells her sister-in-law Brenda she's going to live in the country and take Elizabeth with her. Brenda already knows about Chrissie working as well as claiming benefit, and she looks spitefully pensive when Chrissie brags that there's nothing she can do to stop her leaving. Shortly afterwards, a Social Security Inspector calls round while Chrissie is at work, and Brenda tells him about Chrissie's job as a casual barmaid. When she returns and finds out about her unexpected visitor, Chrissie panics and tells Brenda she's claiming unemployment benefit under three different names. Helen is persuaded by Meg and Judy to see her ex-solicitor when he visits Wentworth. He apologises for his previous attitude blaming "pressure of work", but still refuses to lodge her appeal, telling her she has no hope of proving that Det. Sgt. Ryan is lying. He invites her to plead guilty but Helen refuses and tells him to pass that on to his friend Harry Stanfield.