It is spring in the village of Thrush Green. In the neighboring Lulling, Charles Henstock admires the blooming garden of his new vicarage, glad that the squabbles with his parishioners, recounted in Affairs at Thrush Green, are settled. And yet the good vicar wistfully recalls his former home - the ugly old rectory of Thrush Green, which burned to the ground. Now, from the rectory's ruins, the villagers are building eight retirement homes for older folks who are in need. But how to choose who will live there? How will they get on together? And how will they accommodate the dogs, cats, and birds that must come along? Spring has brought a new crop of dilemmas, but Dr. Henstock and the villagers are determined to make the old people feel at home in Thrush Green.