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Summary

The first six series of the Sony Award-winning sitcom about a social worker with all the right jargon, but none of the practical solutions.

Meet Clare Barker, the social worker who likes nothing more than sorting out other people's problems (while failing to deal with her own). Wracked with guilt over being white, middle-class and heterosexual, she has a dedicated social conscience (unless it's inconvenient for her) and lives to interfere in other people's lives—both on a personal and professional basis. Bearing the brunt of her control freakery and lack of self-awareness are her family, colleagues and long-suffering teacher partner, Brian—all of whom have their own frustrations, disappointments and dramas.

In these six series, Clare and Brian try to shore up their rocky relationship, as Brian contemplates proposing, persuades Clare to attend couples counselling, and considers splitting up. Will their baby son, Thomas Paine, bring them back together—or will new nanny Nali prove a further obstacle to domestic bliss? Meanwhile, the Sparrowhawk Family Centre is threatened with closure, and the team are joined by new member Libby—'an Aussie and a lesbo', proud to be both, and after Clare's job...

Based on the long-running cartoon strip in the Guardian's 'Society' section, this wonderfully entertaining series stars Sally Phillips as Clare and Alex Lowe as Brian, alongside an ensemble cast including Nina Conti, Richard Lumsden, Ellen Thomas, Gemma Craven, Liza Tarbuck, Andrew Wincott and Sarah Kendall.

Production credits:

Written by Harry Venning and David Ramsden

Produced by Katie Tyrrell

Executive Producer: Paul Schlesinger

Cast:

Clare - Sally Phillips

Brian - Alex Lowe

Megan/Nali - Nina Conti

Ray - Richard Lumsden

Irene - Ellen Thomas

Helen - Gemma Craven/Liza Tarbuck

Simon - Andrew Wincott

Libby - Sarah Kendall

Other parts played by members of the cast

With Paul Chequer, Emily Wachter, Nicholas Boulton, Helen Longworth, Stephan Hogan, Richenda Carey, Alex Tregear, Sartaj Garewal, Bharti Patel, Delroy Brown, Vicki Pepperdine, John Cummins, Gerard McDermott, George Harris, Roy Hudd, Brigit Forsyth, Phil Davis, Christine Kavanagh, Lewis MacLeod, Mel Hudson, Geraldine McNulty, Mark Straker, Joseph Kloska, Martin Hyder, Shaban Arifi, Anna Bengo, Rad Lazar, Ben Onwukwe, Sam Pamphilon, Lloyd Thomas, Donnla Hughes, Chris Pavlo, Philip Pope, Rosemary Leach, Doreen Mantle, Jess Robinson and Paterson Joseph.

First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 26 November-31 December 2004 (Series 1), 4 November-9 December 2005 (Series 2), 18 December 2006-22 January 2007 (Series 3), 16 January-20 February 2008 (Series 4), 18 February-25 March 2009 (Series 5), 31 May-5 July 2010 (Series 6).

©2022 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd (P)2022 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd

Critic reviews

"Completely engaging... beautifully observed characters and lots of very funny material." (The Sony Judges)

What listeners say about Clare in the Community: The Complete Series 1-6

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Love it

I only found out about this program roughly a year and a half ago... last month I eventually bought every single individual series (12 credits). For one credit this is completely worth it and I listen to these non-stop! by far the best comedy series on the radio

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Love love love

Absolutely love this series- fun, warm, well observed and jumps the shark in some episodes. Great cast, have listened to this series loads of times and it never gets boring. I’ve been waiting for this omnibus edition for a while and I can honestly say that using 2 credits for the whole series was an absolute bargain. Simply brilliant

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excellent

very very funny I have all the episodes on CD. this is great listening

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Great listen why have Series/Episode titles gone?

I loved it so much on the radio that I've bought all 12 series. I'm just off to listen to series 7-12.

A quick note. When I downloaded this it had Series and Episode numbers and titles...these have disappeared and I've had to replace them by searching the web.