Episode 2856

Australian Air Date: 19th June 2000
UK Air Date: 6th August 2001
Writer: Sean Nash
Director: Robert Meillon

Vinnie thinks he’s struck gold with Martin. Mitch and the Drop-In Centre suffer a major set-back. The Sutherlands get a harrowing welcome to Summer Bay. Duncan and Nick come to strife with Rhys Sutherland.

Extended Summary

The Summer Bay house is quite empty – so quiet. It is interrupted when a new family arrives – the Sutherlands: the parents and their three girls. The removal men are bringing in the furniture and the parents suggest where things go. The removal man asks Mr Sutherland has he been in Cairns before as he remembers seeing his face; the reply is no. The girls run upstairs to grab the rooms, and argue over it when they come down. Two of the girls want to go around the Bay and Mr Sutherlands tells them they have fifteen minutes max.

Duncan and Nick are standing at the stairs to Colleen’s home, staring at her washing, laughing about the size of some items. Colleen opens the door asking them what they are up to. They lie that they are not doing anything and that they are here as they usually take a shortcut.

Colleen comes into the house with a basket of food and introduces herself. She has guessed the names correctly: the parents are Rhys and Shelley. The removal man overhears the names and asks Rhys is he THE Rhys. Rhys says he is: he is an ex-AFL player. Colleen is surprised, admitting that they did not expect a celebrity. She talks about the Nashes who lived in that house and moans about young kids causing trouble in the caravan park.

Duncan and Nick spot two girls – they don’t know they are the Sutherland girls. They say they like the one with the hat, and argue friendly over who got her first. They talk to them, but get laughed at instead. They try to come up with a better way to approach them. They go through the caravan park but are told to get lost by Rhys; Duncan later complains to Alf, who decides to have a friendly word with him.

Martin is in the Diner when Vinnie approaches him. He asks Vinnie does he want a coffee; Vinnie has a better one: beers at his place. Martin tells him he left the Bay because of the drink, and talks about the residents of the Bay who considered him a no-hoper, and that Lance was the only one who would drink with him. Vinnie asks him about opening a business in NSW. Martin lights up at the thought of the residents’ faces when they see how well he has done.

Leah complains to Alf about Vinnie who keeps talking about Martin non-stop, and is worried that he may leave to work in Queensland. Vinnie talks to her later and tells her that he may be a manager of staff, and that it may be in the city.

Mitch and Hayley arrive in the beach house asking Irene for some food for the drop-in centre party. Irene says they can, but only for themselves as the phone rang many times from the volunteers who cannot make it.

In the old house, two young lads approach Hayley and Mitch asking could they stay the night in the house. They are refused as the place is not open yet. Mitch is persuaded and changes his mind; they can stay for one night only. They ask about the Sutherlands; Irene says she saw a removal van outside the house. Hayley and Mitch are wondering whether to reveal the matter of the kids staying overnight, and have decided to keep it quiet otherwise it would ruin things with DOCS.

Mrs Sutherlands introduces herself as Shelley to Mitch and Hayley who also introduce themselves. They ask her is she a social worker. She says she is not anymore, and listens to their plans for the drop-in centre. She wishes them luck, and she is sorry she cannot help as she promised the family she would be finished when they moved. One of the girls overhears them and says she feels bad about her mother’s promise.

At night, one of the girls (names were not really identified with each, but they are Dani, Kirsty and Jade) finds the remote much to Rhys’ delight. Shelley is having trouble with electricity, which then goes out. The fuse box is opened; all the fuses have been taken. A car roars around the caravan park, and Rhys tries to stop them, when he is in front of them. He does not get hit, and suffers only a graze. Rhys and Shelley comment on their harrowing welcome to Summer Bay…

Guest Cast



Arrivals and Departures

Rhys Sutherland (Michael Beckley)
First episode. Ex-AFL player, turned hamburger shop owner who moved to the city for a seachange.

Shelley Sutherland (Paula Forrest)
First episode. Social worker who quit to move to Summer Bay.

Dani Sutherland (Tammin Sursok)
First episode. 17 year old rebel daughter.

Kirsty Sutherland (Christie Hayes)
First episode. 15 year old twin sister of Jade.

Jade Sutherland (Kate Garven)
First episode.. 15 year old twin sister of Kirsty.


Early press materials reveal that Rhys Sutherland was initially named Dave Sutherland.