The Pursuits of Darleen Fyles: Series 1-10

Listen to a sample

What to expect

All ten series of the acclaimed BBC Radio 4 sitcom

‘A warm, menacing, funny must-listen’The Guardian

This rom-com with a difference follows the challenges and aspirations of Darleen Fyles and her partner Jamie, a young couple with learning disabilities. Over the course of 50 episodes, they struggle with the problems and frustrations of everyday life, overcome prejudice and bullying, and forge a stable relationship.

High-spirited and determined, Darleen refuses to let obstacles stand in her way. She and Jamie have more than their fair share of setbacks, including financial crises, difficulties with sex, health worries and a serious row about living arrangements: but their love for each other endures.

Donna Lavin and Edmund Davies, who have learning disabilities themselves, star as Darleen and Jamie, and the supporting cast includes Denise Welch, Rob Pickavance and Olwen May. We are also introduced to 17-year-old Alex Huntesmith, who plays himself, and whose parents both have learning disabilities. Through him and his real mum, Jill, a mother of four, we are given an insight into their extraordinary real-life family.

The Pursuits of Darleen Fyles was shortlisted for a BBC Audio Drama Award, and transferred to BBC TV as part of Jimmy McGovern’s Moving On strand. Based on true stories and created in part through improvisation, this tough, feelgood series is at once humorous, heartfelt and poignant.

Written by Esther Wilson
Produced and directed by Pauline Harris

Cast
Darleen – Donna Lavin
Jamie – Edmund Davies
Treena – Siobhan Finneran/Lorraine Ashbourne/Lesley Nicol/Denise Welch/Sally Lindsay
Tony – Rob Pickavance/Roger Morlidge
Fran – Olwen May
Colin – Lee Boardman
Chelsea – Vicky Binns
Becca – Victoria Connett
Sarah – Deborah McAndrew
Nick – Greg Wood
Leonard – Steve Evets
Ben – Wyllie Longmore
Marie – Emma Hartley-Miller
Bob – Stephen Chapman/Carl Cockram/Andrew Dunn
Vicar/Kenny – Declan Wilson
Marie – Emma Hartley Miller
Bob/Jeweller – Stephen Chapman
Stacey – Niamh Clarke/Olivia Cosgrove/Ashley Ogden/Millie Rose Kinsey
Elsa –Judith Barker
Pat – Janice McKenzie
Jay – Andrew Schofield
Mohammad – Sushil Chudasama/Peter Singh
Woman in street/Girl on bus – Hollie-Jay Bowes
Alex Huntesmith – Himself
Jill Huntesmith – Herself
Romana/Doctor/Jill/Josie/Ann/Midwife/Teacher – Ruth Worth
Tony – Roger Morlidge
Scott – Byron Konizi
Jilly – Ruth Piggott
Ged – Neil Bell
Chemba – Dan Poyser
Job centre advisor – Barnaby Gordon
David/Doctor/Shop assistant – John Catterall
Sal – Eileen O’Brien
Karen – Kate Coogan
Doctor Stevens – Ben Worth

Critics Review

  • a warm, menacing, funny must-listen in the process, is hugely down to the acting talents of its lead, Donna Lavin.

    The Guardian

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