Series 1, Part 5 by Jill Hyem

First broadcast: Thursday 19 November 1981

Violet is buried in the compound. A month later Yamauchi reports the latest successes of the Nipponese forces. Beatrice is concerned that more women are falling ill every day. Marion explains that she has put in a request for more medicine and that a visit by a Medical Officer is expected, but there are doubts that one will ever arrive. Marion fails to enlist Rose to help with a teaching rota for the children. Dorothy also refuses to get involved and tells Marion that she no longer believes in God. Ulrica pulls up Marion for the British lack of attendance at her services. Sally confides in Nellie about her fears for husband Peter’s safety and her pregnancy. Beatrice advises Judith that she should not let Debbie associate with Blanche. Rose reveals details about her past to Blanche. Judith is unable to attend a night-time tenko as she has contracted malaria. The next morning Marion asks Yamauchi for more quinine and an additional hut to use as a sick bay. He refuses to provide either but agrees that in future the sick can be excused tenko. Marion coordinates the transfer of women between huts so that one may be used as a sick bay. Christina also succumbs to malaria and is moved into the sick bay while Blanche, Debbie and Dorothy move in to Marion’s hut. Sally is uncomfortable about Dorothy’s presence due to her pregnancy. Marion calls a meeting at which she suggests a new division of duties and the formation of committees, as well as an idea she has had about rebuilding a burnt-out hut as a sick bay.  In response to recent criticism, she also asks the women to vote on who they want as their leader. The women unanimously agree that Marion should lead them and subsequently pull together to rebuild the hut. Yamauchi is surprised by their efforts. Blanche has a hair-cut. Ulrica gives Beatrice some medicine that the Dutch failed to volunteer to her earlier. When a car arrives in the compound, the women think that the M.O. has finally arrived but it is in fact the Kempei Tei (the Japanese secret police) who have come to question Marion.

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About Andy Priestner

Trainer and consultant on social media, marketing and comms, user experience and ethnography, leadership, strategic thinking, change and LEGO Serious Play
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