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Curly, Ken, Fred, Nita, Alma and Ashley finally arrive at Benbury Lodge for their "Forward with Freshco" weekend. They are appalled by the basic accommodation and to find they are to be constantly assessed. Fred and Alma refuse to stay as it's like a prison camp but Curly and Nita force them to stay, saying they have to show what the Weatherfield branch is made of. Their first test is to use planks to cross a river. Nita solves the problem but Fred ends up falling feet-first into the river. Emily thinks it's hysterical when Les asks her for a character reference. She tells him that he's a self-centred, conniving con man who deserves all he gets. Curly worries that his team will let him down and he'll be fired. Driving home from a dinner, Mike and Linda are pulled over. Mike is breathalysed and arrested. The Freshco's crowd are woken at 1.30am, driven into the moors and told to make their own way back for breakfast.


Regular cast[]

Guest cast[]



  • Jim Ryan was credited as a Stuntman on this episode.
  • TV Times synopsis: Les asks a favour of Emily. Mike has a run-in with the law.
  • Viewing Figures: UK broadcast - 14,150,000 viewers (6th place - combined figure including repeat).

Notable dialogue[]

Emily Bishop: "You are a self-centred, devious, conniving, out-for-all-he-can-get con man. Now how's that for a character reference?"
Les Battersby: "Well that's not exactly what I'm looking for..."
Emily Bishop: "Frankly Mr Battersby, I'm amazed you have the gall to even ask. Since you moved here you've done absolutely nothing for this community and I for one think that now that you've been caught stealing from the taxpayer, you deserve whatever punishment the court sees fit to throw at you."
Les Battersby: "I tell you what... I've obviously picked a bad time. We can talk about this again."


Fred Elliott (after falling in the water): "As soon as I saw this freezing cold river I thought 'I do hope we have a chance to go for a paddle.'"

November 1999 episodes
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