Upstairs, Downstairs: Season 3, Episode 8

The Bolter (22 Dec. 1974)

TV Episode  -   -  Drama
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Hazel's first substantial encounter with fashionable society causes her great humiliation, marital distress and a near-fatal accident, when she and James visit Lord and Lady Newbury at Sommerby Park.


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Title: The Bolter (22 Dec 1974)

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Episode complete credited cast:
Meg Wynn Owen ...
David Langton ...
Richard Vernon ...
Christopher Beeny ...
Mrs. Cochrane-Danby
Anthony Dawes ...
Tony Bateman ...
Elisabeth Day ...
Kate Coleridge ...
Mrs. Tewkesbury
John Quayle ...
Anthony Ainley ...


Hazel is worried at the prospect of spending the weekend with James's friends Bunny and Diana Newbury and their coterie of hangers-on. The purpose of the weekend is a fox hunt but James forbids Hazel from riding given her inexperience and the dangers involved. Diana still has feelings for James and is not below pulling practical jokes and convinces Hazel that she should join them after the hunt has started and "surprise" James. Hazel's life is put in danger leading to a row with James. Then there's the question of bed-hopping, which at least some of the guest are enjoying. When Major Cochran-Danby enters Hazel's room with an eye to her bed, he tells her James is doing the same in Diana's room. A heartbroken Hazel then bolts for London. It's all a bit of an eye opener for Edward as well who is acting as James' valet for the weekend when a French ladies maid clearly shows an interest in him. Written by garykmcd

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis







Release Date:

22 December 1974 (USA)  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs



Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Mrs. Tewkesbury: Cockie Dear, the shock of you bearing down in one's bedroom in full steam ahead is enough to make anyone run away to London.
See more »


The Victorians
("The Theme from Upstairs, Downstairs" ) (uncredited)
Composed by Alexander Faris (1971)
Played during opening credits
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User Reviews

Hazel Bellamy 'bolts' twice in one day!
22 August 2010 | by See all my reviews

October, 1913 'The Bolter' gave us the first real 'ripple' of what would turn out to be a most unhappy and stormy marriage between James and Hazel.

This episode takes place at just a year after their marriage, and is almost too painful to watch as we see poor Hazel well out of her depth, as she and James take their first trip together as man and wife to Somerby. The spiteful Diana Newbury does not help matters... After a very short time, it is very apparent that Hazel and Bunny would have made a far better match...

One of the best highlights from this episode, is just how easy it is to see what a lot of silly upper-class 'twits' got up to and talked about who really had nothing else better to do with their lives, when someone from Hazel's background is thrust among them to observe. A classic gem came from Hazel's observation when she says; '...I've never heard so many nice people I didn't know, talk about so many nice horses I didn't know...' Simply priceless! Having already 'bolted' at 'The Hunt' trying her best to 'conform'; Hazel 'bolts' yet again back to London, and to her sympathetic father-in-law, Richard Bellamy who's all too willing to protect her from his son's rage.

NOTE: Meg (who plays Hazel Bellamy) once told me that this was one of her favourite episodes (along with 'If You Were The Only Girl In The World') and one can see why. Meg Wynn Owen was one of the finest actresses to ever appear in the Show.

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