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'A Time to Dance' is a compelling, evocative & highly captivating drama set in and around The Lake District, Cumbria, England.
The book was written by Melvyn Bragg in 1990 and made into a TV adaptation two years later.
Ronald Pickup stars as a retiring bank manager who falls in love with Dervla Kirwan's character, Bernardette Kennedy, an 18 year old girl from a local council estate. The bank manager is married but his wife has terminal cancer.
The story is one of love, lust, jealousy, frustration, mixed loyalties, obsession, misunderstandings & the issues & problems that are present in a relationship where there is a large age & class gap, though common ground is found in this instance.
The main pub, bank and 'home' scenes were filmed at The Tythe Barn and what is now HSBC in Cockermouth, Cumbria. I have revisited the locations several times over the years and lived in the area for a while.
It is indeed true that there were some raunchy scenes between the two main characters but they were entirely appropriate and in keeping with the plot.
It is a pity Ms Kirwan seems to regret her role because of the publicity it received at the time. She was only 19 and felt she did not have enough support.
I found it one of the most emotional and compelling dramas I have ever seen and I still remember it fondly & vividly today, some 18 years after being shown on TV.
I wrote to Lord Bragg in 2008 and he kindly replied, by hand, stating that he felt the TV adaptation had received unfair reviews, that the cast was highly skilled & he may consider a sequel at some stage!
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