The Shell Seekers: A Full-Cast BBC Radio 4 Dramatisation

The Shell Seekers: A Full-Cast BBC Radio 4 Dramatisation

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
July 2024
2 hours 23 minutes
Rosamunde Pilcher's beloved saga of one family's passions and heartbreaks – plus an interview with the author

‘A deeply satisfying story written with love and confidence’ Maeve Binchy

Recovering from a heart attack, Penelope Keeling discharges herself from hospital and returns to her cosy Cotswolds cottage. Fiercely self-sufficient, she values her independence above everything – but fears that others wish to take it from her…

Penelope has one treasured possession – ‘The Shell Seekers’, painted by her artist father Lawrence Stern. A comforting reminder of a precious bygone time, it sparks memories of her bohemian Cornish childhood and her wartime romance with the love of her life. But when her self-centred adult children, Noel and Nancy, find out that Stern’s work is now worth a fortune, they urge Penelope to sell up and give the money to them. Only her daughter Olivia – who has also known love and loss – respects her mother’s freedom to make her own decisions. As Penelope searches her heart, and recalls the passions, tragedies and secrets of her past, she knows what she must do… but will it rip her family apart?

One of the best-selling and most famous sagas of the last four decades, The Shell Seekers is an enduring classic which has touched the hearts of millions worldwide. Set in Gloucestershire, London, Cornwall and Ibiza, and shifting between 1939 and 1985, this poignant drama explores themes of memory, fate, trauma and connection.

Also featured is a fascinating episode of Bookshelf, in which Nigel Forde talks to Rosamunde Pilcher about her life and novels.

Production credits

Written by Rosamunde Pilcher

Dramatised by Lin Coghlan

Directed by Tracey Neale


The Narrator, Rosamunde Pilcher – Jessica Turner

Penelope – Emma Fielding

Olivia – Emily Berrington

Nancy – Jasmine Hyde

Young Penelope – Kitty O'Sullivan

Richard – Carl Prekopp

Noel/Ambrose – Will Kirk

Cosmo/Mr Brookner/Soldier – John Lightbody

Antonia – Imogen Front

Danus – Ian Dunnett Jnr

Lawrence – Michael Bertenshaw

Doris – Debra Baker

Miss Pawson – Anna Spearpoint

Mrs Enderby – Juliana Lisk

First broadcast BBC Radio 4, 14-21 April 2024

The Shell Seekers copyright © 1987 Rosamunde Pilcher

© 2024 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd. (P) 2024 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd
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