Episode Number


Series Number


Written by

Victoria Wood

Executive Producers

Philip McIntyre
David Tyler


Victoria Wood
Geoff Posner


Geoff Posner

Following Episode


Monday (broadcast on 12th November 1998) was the first episode of Dinnerladies. It was the both the first episode of the first series and of the whole show.


It's a typical day in the canteen. Jean's daughter is about to get married and her day is more about preparing for the wedding. We learn later, however, that her daughter gets married anyway and didn't want to make a fuss. Bren and Dolly are talking about the programmes that are scheduled for tonight whilst the new Human Resources manageress, Philippa Moorcroft, attempts to liven up the mood with Scottish Country Dancing, which is completely shot down by the other members of the team. The only worker focused on cooking is Tony Martin.


Just before the canteen opens, Norman comes to deliver the bread and tells Bren about his claustrophobia due him falling off a diving board in Guernsey. After disupting the fact that Norman hasn't delivered the complete amount of bread, Tony signs the delivery and Norman leaves.
Shortly after Tony jokily asks Bren if she could walk around in her bra for five minutes, Anita walks in and is asked if she wants a bunk up. As per usual, she gets confused and asks him if a bunk up is a hammoc, after which Tony walks off to begin work. Then, Dolly and Jean walk in arguing about the song Delilah, closely followed by Tom Jones squatting on the TV Times, leaving Tony baffled. Their conversation quickly moves on to the wedding.
Twinkle then walks in, immediately being told off for walking in wearing her overall. After "going for a fag", Bren starts talking about a film starring Dirk Bogarde. This quickly moves onto Dolly talking about another film about a woman whose husband died in an avalanche before she finds his frozen sperm and gets herself pregnant, interesting Jean instantly and also confusing Anita.
After further confusion between films, Tony returns and gets the conversation back on track. Dolly complains about yet another mistake that Norman has made with the bread before Philippa Moorcroft, a new face to them, comes rushing in asking about Scottish Country Dances. After receiving blank looks, she retreats. Tony runs after her. Due to the toaster not working, Stan is called and he fixes it. Meanwhile, Dolly and Jean talk about wedding starters before Jean informs her that someone once ate a coaster during one wedding, mistaking it for a high-fibre biscuit. Jane orders her usual 12 rounds of white toast. The scene changes to later, when they're on a break and talking about more wedding food. Liza rushes in to show her a bridesmaid dress, which her mum instantly tells her looks wrong. She rushes out again. The conversation moves to sextuplets, making Anita run off, upset that she hasn't got any children.
Shortly afterward, Philippa rushes in to introduce herself as a new worker of Human Resources. They are hardly impressed and she compliments Stan on his clean floor. The conversation quickly gets tense as she reveals that she brings her own food and doesn't buy it with Bren calming it down. Philippa walks out, upset.
Later on, Jean is preparing a trolley of refreshments to be taken up to a meeting with Bren's mum hastily walking in. She borrows some disinfectant before using it on a mobile phone, wrapping it up and giving it to Bren to dispose of. She gives Jean a card someone who she states is not only a stripper but also an accordion player but she takes the card back with her and promises to ring her up for Jean.
The next day and things are all go and Dolly and Twinkle are preparing refreshments for another meeting, Jean is using the phone for bridesmaids' knickers whilst Tony isn't too happy about Anita having counselling with Philippa during work hours. After checking, Stan comes back with a tray of bread after Norman apparently had a panic attack whilst attempting to climb the stairs. Carly the Stripper then enters to meet Jean and it is revealed that Petulia had the wrong person and that it is the stripper's grandfather who plays the accordion. She promises to get in touch with him on their behalf and leaves.
Philippa enters and gets into a discussion with Tony about Anita and Tony tells her that Anita doesn't need counselling and that the women are always going through something. Later in the day, Philippa and the team are gathered around a table to discuss ways of bonding- including Feng Shui (which doesn't go down well with Stan), Scottish Country Dancing (which she immediately crosses out), exploring female sexuality (which Dolly states isn't exactly what Stan should attend) and dressing to reflect the local ethnic community. This outrages Jean who asks immediately if this is for Anita's benefit, with Anita not knowing what is going on.
After a short while, Philippa and Mr Michael rush into the canteen, discussing her moving to the company for him. Mr Michael gets a chocolate bar and their argument continues as they exit. After further time, all the workers get a visit from the stripper's grandad who plays them the accordion. While they're dancing, Philippa enters and is overjoyed at their apparent arranging of Scottish Country Dancing and joins in. It is then that Liza runs in and tells Bren to make her mother aware that she has already gotten married. Bren is stuck for words as Liza runs off again. The episode ends with Bren not knowing what exactly to do.