1 9 7 0 – 1 9 7 2 (UK)
38 x 60 minute episodes
Phyllis Calvert, former star of British films, became a star of television as Kate Graham, a recently-widowed 50-something agony aunt answering readers’ personal problems on the ‘Dear Monica’ page of Heart & Home magazine.
Between her writing and caring for her teenage son, Stephen (Marcus Hammond), Kate found herself in demand amongst her colleagues, particularly her friend, editor Donald Killearn (Jack Hedley), the boss of Killearn Enterprises, who had encouraged Kate to take the job in the first place.
Her home life in Chelsea – where housekeeper Ellen Burwood (Elizabeth Burger) kept things ship-shape – was also far from settled.
The Yorkshire Television series enjoyed moderate success and co-starred Penelope Keith as the snotty and rude Wenda Padbury – the heiress daughter of Lord Padbury who had turned to journalism as a hobby.
Insufferable, feared and hated, Keith reportedly loved every minute of playing her.
Other members of staff included respected company secretary Mr Winch (Preston Lockwood), features editor Lillian Coates (Barbara Markham) and new-blood journalist Bruce Rogers (Tony Anholt).
As the series unfolded, Donald moved on up and Kate and Wenda went on to share the editor’s chair.
Fay Weldon contributed several scripts.
Katherine ‘Kate’ Graham
Dear Monica | A Little Learning | It’s So Peaceful in the Country | Anything for a Quiet Life | Dance Little Baby, Dance Up High | One Good Turn | Say It with Flowers | A Good Spec | The Love of Two Women | The Man Who Broke the Rules | The King Is Dead | Take Over: Round One | Take Over: The Verdict | Ideally’s a Big Word | A Child Is a Gift | From a Stranger | A Sort of Beauty | A Sort of Change | That Kind of Love | A Good Meddle | You Can’t Condemn Them All | Call Her Sensitive | Call Her Serious | Good and Proper | A Human Weakness | The Great Female Rebellion | A Very Long Spoon | People Depend on You | A Man for All That | I Belong to Somebody | A Fact of Life | Second Time Round | A Step in the Right Direction | Moonlight and Roses | The Woman Behind the Man | Accidents Will Happen | A Nice Rest | Back to Square One