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A country Practice the TV show

Updated on September 22, 2013

A Country Practice

A Country Practice is one of Australia's most watched and loved tv series. The first episode aired on 18 November 1981 and ran for an outstanding 1048 episodes over 13 seasons with the series finale on 22 November 1993. It was then picked by a different TV station and run for another 30 episodes. Most episode were split in 2 and run over 2 nights each week at 1 hour. Although I do remember 1 episode was so in depth it ran for 6 1 hour episodes. I remember watching the 1st part on Tuesday nights and the 2nd part on Thursday. This would have to be on of Australias best series, well that's from me personally..

Read on to find out more on the characters, plots, take some polls and learn more about this fantastic show....

Series 7 pt 2

released in May 2012

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11 disc (34 hrs viewing pleasure)

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ACP theme

What's it about..

This drama focuses on the small rural town of Wandin Valley set in the bush of Australia. The focus is mostly on the Medical clinic and the hospital and all that are involved with both. It then stems on from the Drs and nurses to their families and friends. This then gets the local Pub, Vet, Police, shops and schools involved until we just about know the whole community.

I really liked how the show focused on real life issues such as peer pressure, unemployment, drugs and alcohol, medical issues. These were often introduced in the episode by guest cast. We then see the locals (regular cast) reactions and how they cope and support each other. Each episode is different but the regular cast are the same growing from year to year.

The way the show explores all these issues is done so well and from different points of views often including cast having different opinions and learning from each other.

I have been fortuneate enough in my younger years to meet 2 of the characters personally, they were Brian Wenzel who played Seargent Frank Gilroy and Gorson Piper who played Bob Hatfield.

YouTube Trailer

My Personal Review

Find out for yourself what it was all about and fall in love with Wandin Valley and the people who lived there

A Country Practice: Unforgettable Moments: Seasons 1-5 [PAL]
A Country Practice: Unforgettable Moments: Seasons 1-5 [PAL]

Get you copy of the most memorable moments here

 

Where it was filmed and aired

Most outdoor scenes were actually filmed in and around Pitt Town and Ebenezer on the outskirts North West of Sydney. While the ndoor scenes were filmed at the studios at Channel Seven's. Some other scenes were filmed on a cruise ship, in Sydney and Perth, and at nearby racetracks.

Places where this show has been aired are

Canada:

Burma

Denmark

France

Germany

Hong Kong

Indonesia

Ireland

North America

New Zealand

Norway

UK

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Characters

In order from the most appearances on A Country Practice

Shane Porteous plays Dr Terrence Elliot in 934 episodes. 1981-1993

Terrence is the Senior Doctor in Wandin Valley. Terrence moved to the country after the death of his son. He settled in well and gained the respect from the locals. He is a much loved member of Wandin Valley and A Country Practice.

Brian Wenzel plays Sergeant Frank Gilroy in 885 episodes. 1981-1993

Frank was born and bred in the valley and although he is quite stuck in his ways and old fashioned he has a lot of respect for the town and the people of the town and in return town respects him in return

Joyce Jacobs plays Esme Watson in 774 episodes. 1981-1993

Esme is the towns gossip and busy body. But everyone seems to have a soft spot for her. She lives on her own and is always offering to help others even if it is for the sake of some extra gossip

Lorrae Desond plays Shirley Dean Gilroy in 765 episodes. 1981-1992

Shirley was born in the Valley and loves to travel But her home is in Wandin Valley where her daughter Vicki was born and her now husband Frank Gilroy and her live. She is a lovely, kind and caring. A dream mum for many Aussie girls watching

Gordon Piper plays Bob Hatfield in 697 episodes. 1981-1992

Bob was the local plumber and also a fantastic fundraiser. Being a very big bloke he used his his height and weight to stand over people all except those who know him as the soft teddy bear that he really was.

Syd Heylen plays Vernon 'Cookie' Locke in 682 episodes. 1982-1992

Cookie as you can guess was the cook at the pub and the go to for information if you needed it. He had it rough at some points but always managed to come through with a smile and another scheme to make him and Bob rich which never worked.

Joan Sydney plays Matron Margaret 'Maggie' Sloan in 405 episodes. 1983-1993

Maggie was very strict and many at 1st were afraid of her. Buy once everyone got to know her they soon respected her and grew to like her. Maggies has a weakness for gambling and horse races

John Tarrant plays Matt Tyler in 348 episodes. 1988-1992

Matt Became the towns local vet sharing a place with Cathy whom he had went to school with and dated but were only friends. Matt was a kind and caring vet and became well respected around the town

Shane Wittington plays Brendan Jones in 339 episodes. 1981-1986

Brendan was the first male nurse at the hospital that I know of. His love for his wife Molly and daughter Chloe touched the hearts of many Aussies. He was a hard working nurse who became matron until Maggie arrived. Brendan was very good with kids and was an outstanding nirse

Penny Cook plays Vicky 'Dean' Bowen in 305 episodes. 1981-1993

Vicky was the town vet taking over from her father. Her mum is Shirley and they are very close although very different. Vicky is very much a tomboy and tries hard to prove herself as a female vet.

Grant Dodwell plays Dr Simon Bowen in 299 episodes.1981-1986

It was hard for Dr Bowen being new in town trying to gain the towns respect, only because he had fancy clothes and flash car. It wasn't long before he settled in and made a name for himself, and married Vicky, finally. And even got a pet wonbat, Fatso.

Anne Tenney plays Molly Jones in 293 episodes 1981-1986

Molly is the bright and outspoken wife of Brendan, Brendan was the nurse and Molly ran the hobby farm. which included Doris the pig and her much loved chickens. Molly and Brendan were a match made in heaven and it showed especially when their daughter Chloe came along

Georgie Parker plays Lucy "Gardiner' Tyler in 266 episodes. 1988-1992

Lucy came to the valley as a nurse and was very bubbly and caring. She was always up to fight a good cause. After finally settling down with the town vet and getting married they finally conceived their 1st baby even with Lucy medical issues

Maureen Edwards plays Matron Rosemary Prior in 243 episodes 1983-1993

Matron Prior came to the valley from being over in Africa where her husband had been killed. She too got off to a rocky start in the valley because there were things she just couldn't change about herself.. But things soon settled down for her.

Andrew Blackman plays Dr Harry Morrison in 236 episodes 1991-1993

Harry came to town as a locum and wanted to go on to plastic surgery, but the life and settings in the valley sucked him in and he decided to stay on. Eventually partnering with Terrence and finding love.

Josephine Mitchell plays Jo Loveday in 233 episodes. 1985-1989

Jo came to the valley to be with her cousin Judy. Judy moved away so Jo stayed with Frank and Shirley. She was young and keen and has a good heart that she gave to a male nurse much older than herself things were rocky as the locals weren't impressed but they soon came around

Di Smith plays Dr Alex Fraser in 232 episodes 1982-1993

Alex comes to town to take over when Dr Bowen leaves. She finds a lot of young blokes coming to see her as an excuse but she soon gets around them. Alex is determined to stand on her own 2 feet and make a name for herself

Kate Raison plays Cathy Hayden in 230 episodes 1987-1990

Cathy is a local Park Ranger who loves to ride horses and clash with work policies. She is a little insecure when it comes to men but can handle herself at the best of times and stands up for what she believes is right.

Michelle Pettigrove plays Kate Bryant in 230 episodes. 1988-1993

Kate is a dedicated nurse. She is afraid to give her heart as she is suffering from leukemia. She is in remission though thanks to a bone marrow transplant the donor being her brother.

Matt Day plays Julian 'Luke' Ross in 227 episodes 1989-1993

Luke had a rough upbringing, So he was sent to live with Shirley and Frank to get his life in order. He did this with the help of the locals and went on to make a better life for himself and become respected in the town

Wendy Strehlow plays Judy Loveday in 185 episodes 1981-1986

Judy is a nurse at the hospital and although she has a good haert she also has a loudmouth and doesn't know when to keep it shut. She is a talented nurse and has a mischievous laugh one that could never be forgotten

Kym Wilson plays Darcy Hudson in 183 episodes. 1989-1993

Darcy was close to Luke and took it hard when he left, she then threw herself into alcohol and men.

Michael Muntz plays Dr Chris Kouros in 164 episodes. 1899-1991 (not pictured)

Chris came to replace Alex as a locum in the clinic and stayed on when Alex decided to stay up North

Gavin Harrison plays Hugo Strzelecki in 161 episodes. 1992-1993

Hugo was passing through town when he was run off the road by Darcy who was taking a driving lesson. After recovering from the accident he decided to stay on in town.

John Concannon plays Sergeant Tom Newman in 160 episodes. 1992-1993 (not pictured)

Tom came i to be Franks replacement, he moved to the Valley with his wife but after their miscarriage she went back to the city leaving Tom devastated.

Nicholas Bufalo plays Ben Green in 156 episodes. 1985-1988

Ben came and replaced Vicky. He has a love of classical music and often plays it for his patients in his clinic. His different methods often had the locals questioning his abilities.

Emily Nicol plays Chloe Jones in 151 episodes. 1983-1986 (not pictured)

Chloe is the much loved daughter of Brendan and Molly Jones. A favorite among the locals and a winner of many Australian hearts

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Famous people who appeared on ACP

Its estimated that around 1200 cast member including the one listed above have made appearances in at least 2 episodes or more. I wonder how many it would be including all the appearance of those for only 1 episode?

A Country Practice has also become well-known for its number of guest stars appearances, including Baz Luhrmann, Smokey Dawson, John Meillon, Sir Robert Helpmann, Ray Meagher (Alf from Home and Away) and even Australian Prime Minister Bob Hawke as seen in the image with Bob and Cookie.

Nicole Kidman (1984), Toni Collette (1990) and Simon Baker (1993) also had guest-roles before going on to international fame.

Drs, Nurses and vets throught out A country practice

Here is a short list of all the drs, nurses, matrons and vet that lived in the Valley

Drs:

1. Rupert Clarke Prior to 1981

2. Terence Elliott 1978 to 1993

3. Simon Bowen 1981 to 1985

4. Alex Fraser 1986 to 1989

5. Cris Kouros 1989 to 1991

6. Supatra Prasert

(locum) 1989

7. Harry Morrison 1991 to 1993

Matrons

Marta Kurtesz late 1970s to 1983

Maggie Sloan 1983 to 1990

Ann Brennan 1990 to 1991

Rosemary Prior 1991 to 1993

Nurses

Judy Loveday 1981, 1982 to 1986 1, 2,

Brendan Jones 1981 to 1985 3 to

Sue Daley 198?-198?

Donna Manning 1986 to 1987

Michael Langley 1987 to 1989

Lucy Gardiner 1989 to 1992

Kate Bryant 1991 to 1993

Nurse Bristow 1982

Nurse Brown 1991

Nurse Cotteril 1982

Nurse Dobson 1982

Nurse Hammond 1982

Sister Temple 1992

Sister June Wood 1993

Sister Winter 1993

Vets

1. Jack Dean Prior to 1981

2. Vicky Dean 1981 to 1985

3. Ben Green 1985 to 1988

4. Matt Tyler 1988 to 1992

5. Anna Lacey 1992 to 1993

What did we think?

Why was it so popular?

Well personally I think it was because all the characters were so likeable and it was easy to get to know them but so very hard to let them go also

the story lines each week hit home. Every one could relate to them. I was watching this show when I was 7 and I know of others watching even younger. We would all go to school the next and talk about the episode and what we thought was going to happen the next episode. So it is a show for everyone of all ages and lovable characters that just seem to grow on you where you felt their pain, sorrow and you could also laugh with them

What did Aussies think?

I think that most Aussies seen it the way I see it, I have never heard of one bad thing said against the show its characters well except that they didn't want it to finish!

Awards for the Show, Cast and Crew

A Country Practice is the third most successful television program in the history of the Logie Awards having won 29 awards during the twelve years of being on the air. Here they are listed below-

THE SHOW:

1983

Most Popular Drama in Australia

Most Popular Drama in NSW

1984

Most Popular Drama in Australia

Most Popular Program in NSW

1985

Most Popular Drama in Australia

Most Popular Program in NSW

1986

Most Popular Program in NSW

UN Media Peace Prize for "Listen to the Children"

1987

Most Popular Program in NSW

1988

Most Popular Program in NSW

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THE ACTORS:

1982

Brian Wenzel Best Supporting Actor

1983

Grant Dodwell Silver Logie Most Popular Actor in Australia

Lorrae Desmond Best Supporting Actress NSW

Penny Cook Most Popular Actress in NSW

Jeremy Shadlow Best Performance by a Juvenile

1984

Shane Withington Best Lead Actor in a Series

Grant Dodwell Silver Logie Most Popular Actor in Australia & Most Popular Actor in NSW

Anne Tenney Silver Logie Most Popular Actress in Australia

Wendy Strehlow Best Supporting Actress

Penny Cook Most Popular Actress in NSW

1985

Grant Dodwell Silver Logie Most Popular Actor in Australia

Anne Tenney Silver Logie Most Popular Actress in Australia

1988

Joan Sydney Silver Logie Most Outstanding Actress on Australian Television

1989

Georgie Parker Most Popular New Talent on Australian Television

Shane Porteous Silver Logie Most Outstanding Actor on Australian Television

1990

Georgie Parker Most Popular Actress on Australian Television

1991

Georgie Parker Silver Logie Most Outstanding Actress on Australian Television

1992

Kym Wilson Most Popular New Talent

Georgie Parker Silver Logie Most Popular actress

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THE CREW

1984

Judith Colquhoun Australian Writers Guild (AWGIE) award for "When the Bough Breaks"

1986

Ray Harding AWGIE for "Lest We Forget"

1988

Judith Colquhoun AWGIE for "Licensed to Kill"

1989

Tony Morphett AWGIE for "The Damamge Done"

1990

Judith Colquhoun AWGIE for "Bel Canto"

1991

Leon Saunders AWGIE for "Confinement"

James Davern Inducted into the TV WEEK Hall of Fame

A poem for Molly spoken by Bob Hatfield

One of the most heart wrenching scenes ever seen on Australia tv was when Molly died, I still cry watching now here is the poen Bob read when the credits rolled.....

"Mad", we said, "Mad Molly Jones"

But then we didn't know

The kindness that was hers to spare

The joy that she took everywhere

We simply didn't know.

"Mad", we said, "Mad Molly Jones"

But then we hadn't heard

How she could fight to save a flower,

And give each man and dog his hour

We simply hadn't heard.

"Mad", we said, "Mad Molly Jones"

But then we hadn't seen

That she could make a dull day bright,

That she was colour, warmth, and light

We simply hadn't seen.

Molly Jones, it's over

Yet we cannot say goodbye

For all the loveliness we knew

And love of life and friendship true

And laughter brave once dwelt in you

And how can such things die?

DVD releases and more

DVD releases are

Season 1 released April 2006

Season 2 part 1 released April 2006

Season 2 part 2 released April 2007

Season 3 part 1 released April 2007

Season 3 part 2 released ?

Season 4 part 1 released Nov 2007

Season 4 part 2 released Nov 2007

Season 5 part 1 released April 2008

Season 5 part 2 released April 2008

Season 6 part 1 released April 2010

Season 6 part 2 released June 2010

Season 7 part 1 released October 2011

Season 7 part 2 released May 2012

Unforgettable moments from season 1-5 released Dec 2009

Beyond Home Entertainment has the DVD rights. Through here you can contact them for more information on when they are going to releases the next seasons. The more that ask for this information the more likely they are going to get things moving quicker!!

Now waiting on Season 8!

Plus there are a few bookspublished, not longer in print but available 2nd hand on eBay etc and there is also 10 Anniversary Magazine with 100 pages, this is a souvenir copy as seen in this picture

Tell me your thoughts on ACP!

Tell me your thoughts on A Country Practice

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    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      Love love the show. Waiting on season 8 to come out please please.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      liked this indeed! Glad I browsed upon it ... if you like to browse lens too, mine has a great educational topic with poll questions for my readers to enjoy if you haven't check my lens out before.

    • adamfrench profile image

      adamfrench 6 years ago

      I find most of the Australian shows can be addictive

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      I'd say you have to be the #1 fan of A Country Practice and you certainly created an excellent tribute page. I can see why it was so popular with that excellent cast and guests appearances on the show.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Frankly hadn't heard about this show before. Certainly sounds and looks interesting though!

    • Allanna profile image

      Allanna 6 years ago

      I love the show. Nice going mum.