Waste Not, Want Not is the fourth episode of the first series of The New Statesman, and was first broadcast on ITV on 4 October 1987.
Callous Alan robs a blind busker to pay for parking, and enters an abandoned London Underground station to meet his confidante Norman, who has some worrying news. The authorities are going to demolish an old lock-up on Pilchard Street in Hull; the exact same place Alan secreted a large amount of waste plutonium oxide on behalf of General Galtieri before the Falklands War, for which Alan received £55,000 in payment. Norman is noticeably more emotional than usual, and starts to sob uncontrollably.
Back at the B'Stard residence, Sarah has prepared lunch for Alan, and her visiting father, Roland. Roland bickers with Alan over his lack of interest in his constituency, whilst Alan insists that he is more effective in Westminster than at home. Later, Alan visits Sidney Bliss and once again discusses with him the past, and Sidney's longing for the return of hanging. Whilst enjoying a pint, a publican starts an argument with Alan over his pro-privatisation stance, during which the publican mentions there is an abandoned mine somewhere in Haltemprice that he used to work at. Seeing an answer to all of his problems, Alan asks Sidney whether he knows where the mine is. He doesn't know, and only remembers that it never re-opened after the general strike in the 1920s, and that it is still owned by Alan's father-in-law...
Alan returns home and tries to suck up to Roland, who sees that he's after something and resists, leaving Alan without the information he needs. Later, Alan and Norman study local maps in detail and come to the conclusion that the mine is nearby. They retrieve the toxic waste barrels from the lockup in Hull, and convey them to the mine entrance in a flatbed lorry. On the approach, Norman realises that the mine shaft runs underneath a primary school, and has a crisis of conscience and refuses to dump the waste. Alan is unconcerned, based on his view that it's "just a council school," causing the furious Norman to leave him to it.
Alan enlists the help of Sidney instead, who is prevented from committing because of his "fear of depths." It soon becomes clear why Roland was reluctant to give up the mine's location; it is being used to store a significant amount of mustard gas stockpiled for use on striking miners in 1926. Roland is waiting in the mine as Alan descends on a rope ladder, and offers him an alternative location to store the waste, at a price. As they walk off into the darkness, Alan concludes that Roland is "a bigger bastard" than he could ever be.
Rik Mayall as Alan Beresford B'Stard
Marsha Fitzalan as Sarah B'Stard
R.R. Cooper as Norman Bormann
Charles Gray as Roland Gidleigh-Park
Peter Sallis as Sidney Bliss
Peter Martin as Vernon
- When Roland asks Sarah if she's got any South African fruit, this is a reference to the embargo on South African food of the 1980s, due to apartheid.
- Haggerston Underground was a real station, built in 1865 and abandoned in 1940. A new station was built at Haggerston in 2010 a short distance from the site of the original.
- One of only three episodes out of a filmed 29 which do not feature Piers Fletcher Dervish.
- Norman has become more feminine and has started wearing more feminine colours. Alan comments that Norman has also started to become more and more emotional.