A Place in the World (Upstairs, Downstairs)

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"A Place in the World"
'Upstairs, Downstairs' episode
Episode no. Season 5
Episode 2
Directed by Christopher Hodson
Written by Jeremy Paul
Production code 2
Original air date 14 September 1975
Episode chronology
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"On With the Dance"
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"Laugh a Little Louder Please"
List of Upstairs, Downstairs episodes

A Place in the World is the second episode of the fifth and final series of the period drama Upstairs, Downstairs. It first aired on 14 September 1975 on ITV.

Background[edit]

A Place in the World was recorded in the studio on 23 and 24 January 1975, with the location footage having been filmed in Rotherhithe, London on 20 January.

Cast[edit]

Plot[edit]

It is February 1920, and James writes a letter to The Times about the unemployment of former soldiers. Sir Geoffrey then tells James that Conservative Central Office were impressed and, after a bit of persuading, James agrees to stand in a forthcoming by-election for Parliament. The seat is Rotherhithe East, a safe Labour seat in the London Docklands. After initially ignoring his father's help, Virginia persuades James to allow Richard to help him in the campaign. Richard and Virginia attend a talk James is giving the day before the election, but James is verbal attacked by some members of the audience and the hall then descends into chaos. In the election, the Labour candidate gets 18,928 votes, James gets 7,369 votes while the Socialist Labour candidate gets 1043 votes. While Conservative Central Office is pleased with James' performance, James is disappointed and says he will not stand for Parliament again. However, he is pleased when Hudson tells him he reduced the Labour majority by 639 votes.

Meanwhile, Edward and Daisy visit downstairs and they are visibly experiencing financial hardship and Daisy has had a miscarriage. They leave in embarrassment after Edward argues with Mr Hudson when their poverty becomes clear. Soon after, Frederick delivers a pair of shoes to Daisy from Mrs Bridges, and Edward is enraged when she accepts them. In the meantime, Hudson has suggested to Virginia that she employ the couple. Edward and Daisy both leap at the chance when Virginia offers them the job and the flat that goes above the garage. Edward becomes chauffeur and valet to James on a wage of £40 year, while Daisy replaces Rose as Head House Parlourmaid on a wage of £35 a year. Rose, who is in Southwold following the death of her aunt, is to become Lady Bellamy's lady's maid.

Reception[edit]

James Murray reviewed A Place in the World for The Daily Express. He praised writer Jeremy Paul for injecting a "remarkable degree of insight". Murray said that "the confrontation made electrifying television" and the episode "rich and faultless". It ended his review by commenting that he could not see how LWT would be able "to snuff out the lives of the marvellous characters of Eaton Place" at the end of this series.

References[edit]