Is That The Time? is the 836th episode of The Bill.
Disappointed at being passed over for the post of Area Welfare Chief Inspector, Ch. Insp. Cato becomes disillusioned with the job, and starts behaving erratically, refusing to see Sgt. Boyden for his appraisal interview.
P.C. Hollis is one of the first of the relief to offer his view point on Cato’s actions, likening it to the film ‘Twelve O’Clock High’, about a bomber group in World War II. Hollis’s account is enough for the group, who summarise that “The Bald Headed Bastard has finally lost his marbles.”
With Insp. Monroe delayed at court, Sgt. Cryer has to seek Cato’s authority for a custody review. Cryer persuades Marion (Conway's secretary) to complete the review, but is surprised by his entry, ‘Review delayed due to the unavailability of the Inspector’. When Monroe returns, Cryer suggests lending Cato a sympathetic ear. However, when Monroe approaches Cato, Marion receives an earful of abuse as Cato refuses to see anyone.
Acting Supt. Conway returns from a meeting at Area accompanied by Ch. Supt. Brownlow in an attempt to boost Cato's morale, but Cato hands over his resignation letter instead, Conway reads his resignation letter aloud to Brownlow, reflecting that Cato had a point – older coppers are being pushed out in favour of younger officers despite having less experience.
Meanwhile, Boyden and P.C. Quinnan deal with an assault by a middle-aged magazine vendor with a grudge against his former employer.