The Paradise

Series 1 - Episode 1



Wide-eyed country girl Denise Lovett arrives in a northern city, wrapped in a shawl and agog with the promise of a new life working in her uncle’s shop. But her uncle has bad news; a hated department store called The Paradise has opened across the street, and it’s robbed him of business. There’s no way he can employ her. So Denise (Joanna Vanderham), a resourceful lass, gets herself a job as an assistant in that very same hated department store.

Writer Bill Gallagher’s very loose adaptation of Emile Zola’s novel, The Ladies’ Paradise, shares antecedents – and a number of actors – with his Lark Rise to Candleford. Except we are not in the Oxfordshire countryside, we are in burgeoning urban Britain in 1875.

The Paradise will be adored by anyone whose heart hasn’t recovered from the loss of Lark Rise. It’s well-crafted escapism with glorious clothes, snobbery, gossipy staff and a handsome rotter.


Country girl Denise Lovett arrives in a booming Victorian city to work at her uncle's drapery shop, only to discover it is close to collapse following the opening of a nearby department store. Struggling to make ends meet, she takes up a job in the bigger business, and soon falls in love with its grand trappings - as well as its owner, the ambitious John Moray. Bill Gallagher's drama, based on Emile Zola's 1883 novel The Ladies' Paradise, starring Joanna Vanderham, Sarah Lancashire, Emun Elliott and Matthew McNulty.

Cast & Crew

Denise Joanna Vanderham
Moray Emun Elliott
Jonas David Hayman
Lucille Laura Power
Edmund Lovett Peter Wight
Dudley Matthew McNulty
Sam Stephen Wight
Clara Sonya Cassidy
Pauline Ruby Bentall
Miss Audrey Sarah Lancashire
Katherine Glendenning Elaine Cassidy
Arthur Finn Burridge
Mrs Ballentine Jenna Russell
Mrs Harkness Helen Bradbury
Lord Glendenning Patrick Malahide
Director Marc Jobst
Producer Simon Lewis
Writer Bill Gallagher
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