Only Fools and Horses Wiki
Ashes to Ashes
Series 02, Episode 02
Ashes to Ashes.jpg
Air Date October 28, 1982
Written by John Sullivan
Director Ray Butt
Length 30 minutes
Previous episode "The Long Legs of the Law"
Next episode "A Losing Streak"
List of episode

"Ashes To Ashes" was the 2nd episode of the 2nd series of Only Fools And Horses, airing on the 28th October 1982 with a viewing figure of 9.8 million.


Del and Rodney try to get rid of Trigger's grandad's ashes.


As Del Boy and Rodney are in the market conducting business as usual, Trigger walks by and asks them if they'll attend the funeral of his grandmother Alice. After discovering that they will be the only other mourners, the Trotter Brothers agree.

Later, after the funeral, Del, Rodney, Trigger, and Grandad hang out at Alice's house, and Trigger tells the Trotters that his father died a few years before he was born, as well as the story of how Alice had an affair with someone else while her husband Arthur was away fighting in the war. Among the many things in the house are two urns that Del can sell.

That night, back at the flat, as Del comes to the conclusion that the urns are valuable, Grandad looks in one of them to see the ashes of Trigger's grandfather Arthur. Then, Grandad comes clean as he tells his grandsons that he was the other man who Alice had the affair with while Arthur was away, because his wife Violet had left him at the time. When Arthur found out, he told Grandad that he would come back and haunt him someday. Del and Rodney do not believe that Arthur's ghost could've found Grandad, and go to bed.

Later that night, at 3:00am, Del comes out of the bathroom, just to eavesdrop in on Grandad talking to the urn with Arthur's ashes in it. Del decides to wind him up by talking through a traffic cone, making Grandad think that Arthur's ghost is really talking to him. But unfortunately, Rodney is awakened by the noise and scares Del from behind. Grandad finally has enough and demands that Del and Rodney get the ashes out of the flat. But, Del and Rodney can't get hold of Trigger, since he's on holiday in Ireland. Grandad suggests scattering Arthur's ashes at his old hangout, the Peckham Bowling Green, tomorrow night.

The next night, at the bowling club, Del and Rodney decide to scatter the ashes evenly while saying a prayer, but unfortunately, they don't get to do so as the clubhouse lights up and the players arrive. The Trotter Brothers quickly escape into the night.

The next morning, Del and Rodney try to pour Arthur's ashes into the water at St. Katharine Docks, but are stopped by the river police from doing so.

After failing to pour the ashes into a cement mixer, the Trotter Brothers get lucky when a council cleaning lorry sucks up the ashes from the urn. Del is convinced that it makes sense since Arthur used to be a roadsweeper, but Rodney isn't sure.

When they get back home, Grandad tells Del and Rodney that Trigger received their telephone calls, since he's fogbound at the airport. Trigger tells Del something that Grandad forgot to mention: Trigger's grandmother Alice had been married twice. Del then shows Grandad the other urn which of course is full of ashes.

Featured characters

Story Notes/Trivia

  • This is the first episode that Grandad is in a different outfit to his regular attire, donning a suit for Alice Ball's funeral
  • When Rodney stats 'It's Arthur's Ashes' Del replies to 'Arthur Ashes, that's the black bloke who won Wimbledon' Del is referring to Arthur Ashe who won Wimbledon in 1975.

Story arc

  • Grandad's affair with Alice would be mentioned again in the third episode of Rock & Chips, "The Frog and the Pussycat", as the main reason why Violet threw her husband out of their house in Deptford.