68 year old Deirdre Fisher is an alcoholic and a misery. She loves all the gossip that goes on around Thatch Close and resents Tanya who lives with her. It is rumored that Tanya’s mother abandoned Tanya on Deirdre’s doorstep as a baby for Deirdre to look after her. Deirdre often takes her frustration at being lumbered with bringing up a child by imprisoning the girl in her attic. It’s not long before poor Tanya finds out the horrible truth behind Deirdre’s big secret and the lies she’s kept hidden for years.
Back in the forties Derrick Malcolm Fisher had been through a terrible upbringing. His father was a drug addict and a drunk and beat his mother up at various stages throughout his childhood. As a way of escapism Derrick would dress up in women’s clothes and pretend to be a new person, a powerful woman that would never allow any man too close and would never let any man hurt her. Derrick never told anyone about his fascination of dressing as a woman. He was often beaten up at school and was called a girl by the other boys. He wanted to confide in his mother about a lot of things he wasn’t clear about, but she rapidly became too ill and mentally unstable and was finally taken to a mental institution when Derrick finished school at the age of 16. Around the same time his father had found him dressed as a woman in his bedroom and threw him out, leaving Derrick homeless.
Derrick changed his name to Deirdre Margaret Fisher by deed poll when she found a new home in Thatch Close. She was one of the first to move into the close, when the new houses were originally built on old farm land. This was Deirdre’s new start to life and so she wanted to start to live her new life as a real woman. She hoped it would put the past as Derrick behind him. Deirdre grew her hair long and had come across a Japanese surgeon that offered Deirdre his own back street breast implants. It wasn’t heard of back then only with the rich and famous and Deirdre thought it was the perfect opportunity to really say goodbye to the awful life she once had. She had to sleep with him a few times before he delivered the goods, but after that there was no going back and she planned to one day get her penis chopped off and complete the job.
Ten years drifted by and Deirdre was no happier in life and felt bitter over her past, she began to drink heavily to take away the pain from her past. She had been lucky with the outcome from her breast implants but it hadn’t killed off any of her demons she still had lurking inside. She had a few relationships with men and at this stage of her life she was experimenting with different wigs and different styles of clothing, so much so that it confused the men. They eventually began to realize that she had been lying to them and was once a man. Deirdre that to go through the shame each time and she knew it wouldn’t work. She was disgusted in herself, having the top part completed but still having a penis. Deirdre had been living in Thatch Close for over ten years.
The neighbors would laugh and make fun of her. They were judgmental over the way she looked and the different outfits she wore. They saw Deirdre as a drag queen or circus act. Often she would not come out of the house and have her curtains drawn every day and her depression was getting worse.
One day she found a young girl hiding in her garden shed for shelter. Her name was May and Deirdre took her under her wing and wanted to protect her. May was 18 and Deirdre always wanted someone to look after her at the same age so it felt right after her awful upbringing. She put her up in the house and as time went on, although May tried to find work and a flat, she had a drug addiction and couldn’t cope. But for the first time Deirdre was able to open up about her terrible past to someone that really meant something to her.
But her happiness was short lived. May soon got pregnant by her boyfriend who sold her out to his mates as a prostitute and got her hooked on heroin. Deirdre had various visits from the police and the more Deirdre tried to imprison May to protect her, the more she would rebel. What really hurt her was when the neighbors spread a vicious lie that Deirdre was a pedophile. May left her baby girl on the doorstep for Deidre to look after. She felt she had failed as a mother and run away. Deirdre has always resented the child. She named her Tanya, a name Deirdre’s friend Dot had come up with one afternoon.
Nowadays Deirdre is ruthless and numb to her surroundings. She still drinks and tries to control Tanya’s life. She feels that she failed not only in her own childhood but with May’s too, so she has a lot of resentment towards Tanya. Deirdre also has an evil vendetta against everyone in Thatch Close and really stands her ground. Even though only a few people like Esta Wilson and Janet Bennett know all about her past. If Deirdre doesn’t seek out professional help or Janet and Esta try to intervene and help her make sense of her bitter over her past life, it may end in a disaster for poor Deirdre.
Written and Created by
NAME: MARIA WELSH
MARITAL STATUS: SINGLE
Accident prone, alcoholic Maria Welsh is finding life hell, after the murder of her best friend Kathy Collins who once she shared the house with. Kathy was murdered and shot dead by her evil twin sister Spyrella Adams, who grew jealous of Kathy being such a successful career woman, whereas Spyrella had become known as the black sheep of the family. Maria still lives in the house but can’t seem to keep up with the mortgage and bills. She is worried she might eventually lose the place. Maria always walks into danger, losing her friend Kathy has left her dependent on alcohol. Janet Bennett is her friend who supports her. Having an unwelcome visit from Kathy’s ex-husband, who has just escaped from prison, believing Kathy has large sums of money left over in her will, is all Maria needs.
Kathy’s sprit is unsettled and Maria has a spell of Poltergeist activity, eventually she seeks help from the occult and organises an evening with friends huddled around an Ouija board, only to make matters worse tampering with Kathy dark side. Maria’s past experience and bad relationships, involving men makes her a little on edge. She’s left wandering, which team she’s batting for and seems to have a fixation over her friend Janet, believing Janet wants to sleep with her. However Janet is comfortably married to the Doctor.
Created and written by
NAME: TAMMY WILSON
MARITAL STATUS: DATING ROSS
Esther and Mike Wilson have two children their daughter Tammy and their son Tommy. Esther is a friendly woman and gets on with most of the neighbours. Mike hasn’t been the best father to his two children in the past, not bringing much financial support into the family. He also hasn’t been the best husband to Esther after having an affair with one of the Neighbours.
Tommy is a complete terror and constantly winds up his older sister Tammy who has her heart set on becoming a famous pop star. She will stop at nothing to get there, and when she hears about a ‘Bone Idol’ audition taking place in the city she feels it’s her big chance of stardom.
NAME: CHERYL HAMILTON
MARITAL STATUS: SINGLE
Cheryl Hamilton used to live a charmed life, but all is about to change. Cheryl finds out that her butler Benson has been having an affair with her overseas, rich husband George. George has recently died in a tragic accident, when the tractor he is driving on his grape farm, over turns on top of him. Cheryl is having a nervous breakdown, and to top it off Benson has inherited George’s house, that Cheryl lives in. Benson throws her out and sells the house to the village chairman's wife, making Cheryl hit rock bottom.
After Cheryl has a stint in hospital in a near death experience, it inspires her to open a hair salon in the village. On the opening party she meets the chairman of Stapleton village, they both take an instant liking to each other and their relationship blossoms. Matthew’s wife Carmel is now living in Cheryl’s old house. She is separated from Matthew, but finds out that the woman she ran over and left to die has taken a fancy to her rich husband, so Carmel sets out to destroy her. These two extremely determined, successful women, never initially set out to destroy each other but their paths are crossed. It’s a roller coaster ride to hell and back. Game, set and match! The grand Manor house is the perfect setting for an action packed showdown.
NAME: DOROTHY BEATRICE BUTTERWORTH
MARITAL STATUS: SINGLE
Dorothy Beatrice Butterworth once owned her own bakery in a village called Piddleberry, Dorothy and her husband Gerald baked all their own cakes and pastries and they were run off their feet as the shop was so popular. They were married for twenty five years. One winter's morning Dorothy went to open up the shop and slipped on the concrete steps leading down to the basement of the shop, she cracked open her head, but after a short spell in hospital she was back at the shop helping Gerald.
Gerald was an alcoholic and after Dorothy's fall he began to take to the bottle more as the work load began to increase as Dorothy had slowed down somewhat after the accident. It was rumoured that years later Gerald went to go down into the cellar, lost his step and rolled down to the bottom of the stairs, he broke his neck and died instantly.
The shop was closed down when Dorothy couldn't cope. She moved to Stapleton to move on with her life. Dorothy got involved in the women's institute, baking cakes and making her homemade jams. She also has a little dog and She's very motherly, she likes to feed all the neighbours her famous cup cakes, buns, breads and jams. But there's a dark secret about Dorothy Butterworth and we eventually see that her way of controlling her world around her is totally crazy.
NAME: CARMEL THORNTON-HEATH
MARITAL STATUS: SEPARATED
Carmel Thornton is married to the village chairman Matthew Thornton, who owns the Manor House in Stapleton village. Matthew doesn’t know that Carmel has another side to her. She is a shady character and an evil woman, not only has she been running a massage parlor in the city with underage girls. She also works alongside the country’s top criminals, who are into drugs smuggling and prostitution trading. Once she realizes that Matthew isn’t a well man, Carmel decides to take him for all he is worth.
Carmel moves into Cheryl Hamilton’s old house in Thatch Close after Cheryl’s butler Benson sells it to her. One day whilst speeding along in her Jeep she runs Cheryl over, drives off and leaves Cheryl for dead. What Carmel doesn’t know, is that Cheryl and Matthew have begun to have a romantic love affair together. Although these two extremely determined successful women never initially set out to destroy each other. Carmel and Cheryl’s hatred for each other turns into a roller coaster ride to hell.
Her partner in crime Jansam Fin works for Carmel at the massage parlor. Carmel took Jansam from a slum in Japan when she was young and brought her over to England to use her as a sex slave and a stripper at her seedy night club ‘SYNDROME X’ as Jansam grew older she was given the position as Madam of the massage parlor but began to resent Carmel for abusing her. Jansam and a few other criminals in Carmel’s gang start to steal her money made from the night club dancers, prostitutes and the massage parlor. Once Carmel realizes she’s been taken for a fool, she begins to realize she has more enemies than she ever realized.
Once Matthew passes away the grand manor house is handed over to Cheryl from his will and becomes the perfect setting for the action packed showdown which takes place between them. When Maria intervenes and saves Cheryl’s life by pushing Carmel down the huge flight of stairs at the manor house.
When Carmel recovers from a long stint at the hospital, she repays Maria and Cheryl with a visit that each of them will never forget, but as Cheryl fights once again to save her life in a brawl in the manor house kitchen and swimming pool, there’s only one person who can put a dramatic end to Carmel’s evil torture and that is her long lost sister Consuela born out of wedlock and sent away by Carmel’s father. Consuela has hunted Carmel down and has been working as a stripper at her night club. She wants to settle the score about her past and the wealth that she’s been denied.
Benson is Cheryl Hamilton’s butler. Benson used to work for Cheryl’s husband George, on his grape fields at their vineyard in Perth Australia. What Cheryl doesn’t know is that George fell in love with Benson after a short period of time of him working there. Benson was then sent to England by George to work for a good wage for Cheryl as a live-in butler, until business picked up for George in Australia. Benson returns back to England and their plans to get rid of Cheryl are put on hold. Cheryl is a misery and orders Benson around hand on foot.
One day Benson receives a fax revealing George has been killed in a serious accident and that he has left the house and contents to Benson. Benson then goes ahead to remove Cheryl off his property and puts the house up for sell. The Actor (puppet) later plays Carmel's side kick henchman Lucas.
NAME: ESTA WILSON
MARITAL STATUS: ON & OFF
Esta Wilson is 48 years old and is married to her husband Mike Wilson, they have two children a girl called Tammy and a little boy called Tommy who are a bit of a handful. Esta works so hard to make the children happy, whilst her two-timing husband is having an affair with Mrs Tarn one of the neighbours. It’s only through the gossip that circulates around the close that finally brings it to her attention. Esta then kicks Mike out of the house, but finds looking after the children on her own more than she can cope with.
When Mike tries to make things up with Esta and comes over to the house to find Esta and Tammy held hostage by a serial kidnapper who had been kidnapping all the children from ‘Stapleton’ village. Mike tries to intervene, but it’s Esta who saves the day and it’s because of this hostage siege that brings the family back together and both Esta and Mike give their relationship another go.
Chain smoking Tanya Fisher lives with her so-called grandmother Deirdre. When Tanya was a baby it is rumored that Deirdre’s daughter left Tanya on Deirdre’s doorstep one day and ran away, leaving Deirdre to look after her and bring her up. Deirdre has always resented being responsible for Tanya and treats her badly by locking her in the attic in their house. Tanya’s only friend around ‘Thatch Close’ is Sasha Longley they were both in the same year at school. Sasha treats Tanya badly and has a bad reputation around the village.
Any confidence she gains is crushed by Deirdre’s harsh words. It has not been long since Tanya finished school, but she still can’t get rid of her haunting nickname ‘Hippie Flower Girl’ as Tanya was well known for sitting at the far end of the playing field making daisy-chains. She saw the daisies and other flowers as her only friends. But Tanya's very lucky in love and has fallen in love with Ross Hampton a boy from her year that it seems she feels is way out of her league and this only makes Sasha's jealousy even worse.
31 year old Kathy Collin’s lived in one of the larger two houses in the close with Maria Welsh her best friend who she grew up with. Kathy had just come out of a divorce from her violent husband Jason Collin’s, who is still in prison for G.B.H to another one of his girlfriend’s he was seeing whilst married to Kathy.
Kathy has only one other friend and neighbours in Thatch Close and that is Janet Bennet the doctor’s wife. Keeping her home in Stapleton is extremely costly and therefore both Kathy and Maria Welsh worked in the city at a shares company ‘Maxwell organisations’. Although she is managing director of the company, her position is very rocky as her shady boss Mr Franklin takes an instant disliking to her. To make matters worse, Kathy is unaware that her evil jealous twin sister Spyrella is out to take Kathy’s identity away for good and leave her with nothing.
Spyrella succeeds in setting Kathy up for fraud of ‘Maxwell Organisation’ having had help from Mr Franklin who wants Kathy out of the way as she knows too much about his affair with secretary Carol West and didn’t want it to become public knowledge.
Maria Welsh soon works them both out and their plans are soon foiled and Kathy is released from prison. Returning home to ‘Stapleton’ she feels she finally wants to move on and start a new life somewhere else, but before the removal van turns up to load all of her belongings. Spyrella creeps into the house and shoots Kathy in the head, killing her instantly, which is played out in Maria's flash back's of her trying to cope with post traumatic stress disorder in the first two episodes which cracks open the lid to 'Thatch Close'.