A BBC production of Stella Gibbons' satirical story. (This version was even used to help launch 1971's opening season of Masterpiece Theater on PBS.) Young Flora Poste leaves the funeral of... See full summary »




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Series cast summary:
 Amos Starkadder (3 episodes, 1968)
 Aunt Ada Doom (Starkadder) (3 episodes, 1968)
Sarah Badel ...
 Flora Poste (3 episodes, 1968)
 Judith Starkadder (3 episodes, 1968)
 Reuben Starkadder (3 episodes, 1968)
 Seth Starkadder (3 episodes, 1968)
Billy Russell ...
 Adam Lambsbreath (3 episodes, 1968)
Hazel Coppen ...
 Mrs. Agony Beetle (3 episodes, 1968)
 Elfine Starkadder (3 episodes, 1968)
Sheila Grant ...
 Rennett Starkadder (3 episodes, 1968)
John Golightly ...
 Charles Fairford (3 episodes, 1968)
Charlotte Howard ...
 Meriam (3 episodes, 1968)
Joan Bakewell ...
 Narrator (3 episodes, 1968)
 Urk / ... (2 episodes, 1968)
 Mr. Mybug (2 episodes, 1968)
 Richard Hawk-Monitor (2 episodes, 1968)


A BBC production of Stella Gibbons' satirical story. (This version was even used to help launch 1971's opening season of Masterpiece Theater on PBS.) Young Flora Poste leaves the funeral of her parents and finds herself alone with insubstantial means ("barely enough to keep her in stockings and furs") in mid-1930's London. The young 20-something has no means (nor intentions) of developing her own career save to follow in the footsteps of Jane Austen in becoming an author . . . when she's 50. But she's confident in the support of friends and distant relatives as she gathers life experiences for her writing. She makes a very wise choice when she decides she'll stay with the Starkadders at Cold Comfort Farm - which she expects to be "appalling but interesting" - and where she'll use her talents to fix things (and people). The colorful array of cousins on the farm do not disappoint, but she's confident and, in the end, removes the curse on the farm, frees the cousins from the clutches of ... Written by John R. Williams

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Release Date:

26 December 1971 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Freddie Jones also starred in the 1995 version of Cold Comfort Farm as Adam Lambsbreath. See more »


Version of Cold Comfort Farm (1995) See more »

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User Reviews

A treat for Cold Comfort Farm aficionados!
29 August 2004 | by (Clitheroe, LANCS, ENGLAND) – See all my reviews

I was astonished and delighted to discover, quite by chance, that the BBC's 1971 production of Cold Comfort Farm was available on tape. Ironic that it should only be available in American format!The dramatisation of a favourite novel is seldom received with unreserved pleasure by aficionados, but I well remember my own wholehearted delight in this particular instance.

Comparisons are odious, of course, but I felt John Schlesinger's more recent film lacked the rawness and anarchy of Peter Hammond's production – I found it altogether too picturesque. I also sorely missed Joan Bakewell's narration, which so successfully incorporated, in the earlier version, the wonderful purple passages of Stella Gibbons prose. For me nothing could equal Alastair Sim's extraordinary performance as the tortured Amos, nor surpass Rosalie Crutchley's interpretation of the bereft and despairing Cousin Judith. Definitive too, is the imperturbable normalcy of Sarah Badel's Flora Post, especially in the chaotic and violent scene of Ada Doom's Counting! I originally saw the production in black and white, which I think might have been a plus – I found the colour insipid rather than atmospheric – but I highly recommend this production to any Cold Comfort Farm enthusiast!

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