For the Love of Ada

For the Love of Ada is an ITV sitcom that ran between 1970 and 1971. Although not seen on British TV for over 30 years, the complete series began airing again in late 2018 on Talking Pictures TV, albeit edited with certain 'offensive' words muted out. One of the notable points about this series was there were no opening titles or closing credits in the real sense of the word. Instead both were superimposed on the screen as the 'live' action and script played out on the screen.

For the Love of Ada
Created byVince Powell &
Harry Driver
StarringIrene Handl
Wilfred Pickles
Barbara Mitchell
Jack Smethurst
Country of originUnited Kingdom
No. of series4
No. of episodes27
Producer(s)Thames Television
Running time30 minutes per episode
Original networkITV
Original release20 April 1970 (1970-04-20) 
26 December 1971 (1971-12-26)


The sitcom stars Irene Handl as Ada Cresswell, a Cockney widow, a pensioner who is prone to malapropisms. She lives with her daughter Ruth Pollitt (Barbara Mitchell) and son-in-law Leslie (Jack Smethurst). Ada starts a relationship with Walter Bingley (Wilfred Pickles), the gravedigger who buried her husband, after meeting him at the cemetery while laying flowers on her husband's grave. Walter is a stout Yorkshireman; his relationship with Ada slowly changes from one of companionship to one of romance. They get engaged, and later marry, after which they move in together at his cemetery lodge abode.




  • Robert Keegan as Jack Pollitt, Leslie's father
  • Mollie Sugden as Nellie Pollitt, Leslie's mother
  • Malcolm Rogers as the Vicar
  • Cecily Hullett as Freda Skinner
  • Gabrielle Daye as Mrs Armitage
  • Charles Lamb as Arthur Parsons
  • Anna Turner as Maggie Bingley
  • Patsy Rowlands as Pauline Whitehead
  • Meadows White as Fred Carter
  • Bert Palmer as Fred Bingley
  • Ann Way as Florrie Bingley
  • Ann Beach as Alice Bingley
  • Gerard Hely as Albert Bingley
  • Daphne Heard as the nosey neighbour

Transmission dates

Series One
(6 x 30 mins) 20 Apr-25 May 1970 – Mon mostly 9.30pm

Series Two
(7 x 30 mins) 14 Sep-26 Oct 1970 – Mon 9.30pm

Short special
Part of the All-Star Comedy Carnival 25 Dec 1970 – Fri 6pm

Series Three
(7 x 30 mins) 15 Mar-3 May 1971 – Mon 8.30pm

Series Four
(6 x 30 mins) 26 Aug-30 Sep 1971 – Thu 9pm

Christmas special
(45 mins) Boxing Day (27 Dec 1971) – Sun 6.45pm

Film version

A film version, based on the series, was released in 1972. It was directed by Ronnie Baxter and featured the same principal cast, along with an appearance by Arthur English as a colleague of Walter. The plot revolves around a surprise party being planned for Ada and Walter's first wedding anniversary.

American version

For The Love Of Ada spawned an American remake called A Touch of Grace that premiered on ABC in January 1973. This version starred Shirley Booth and J. Pat O'Malley as Grace Simpson and Herbert Morrison, who like their English counterparts fall in love. The American version faced very tough competition from All In The Family and drew low ratings, resulting in its cancellation in April 1973 after only thirteen episodes, although ABC ran reruns of the show in prime time until June 1973.

See also

DVD release

All four series of For the Love of Ada were released between 2009 and 2012.

DVDRelease date
The Complete Series 112 October 2009
The Complete Series 24 July 2011
The Complete Series 317 October 2011
The Complete Series 416 January 2012
The Complete Series 1 to 4 Box Set19 March 2018
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