The lives of several families in the Yorkshire Dales revolve around a farm and the nearby village. With murders, affairs, lies, deceit, laughter and tears, it's all there in the village.
Jack is jumpy after realising Frank has the book he wrote in his collection, but is relieved when Frank agrees to keep quiet. Marian tells Henry why she is reluctant to have another relationship.
Harry plays Henry and Jack off each other for the sale of his farm. The Sugdens are shocked when Bart reveals that Jack became famous in London.
Joe receives his court summons, whilst the Sugdens adjust to having a best selling author in the family. Meanwhile, Frank cleverly proposes to Janie.
Harry continues to play Henry and Jack against each other. Jack and Marian reconcile as she prepares for her cruise. Janie accepts Frank's proposal and he presents her with a self-made ring.
Jack feels Jacob has left him the farm out of spite, but is left with food for thought when Marian delivers him a few home truths.
When Jack loses interest in Jameson's Farm, Harry tries to trick Henry into paying more, but fails. Amos proposes to Annie but she lets him down gently. As Marian leaves for her cruise, she tells Henry to make it up with Jack or she won't be back.
Ten days have passed since Emmerdale Farm Limited was formed. Jack has supposedly joined Marian on her cruise and Jameson's Farm now belongs to the partnership of the Sugdens and Wilks. Sam parades around in his new suit - acquired from part of the money he received for selling his share of the farm to Henry. Preparations are underway for the sheepdog trials. Amos is running the beer tent with the help of Jerry, a local man. Trash, a well known tramp is wandering around the showground and three local youths try to chat up three girls. Henry discusses the possibility of Marian joining the local hunt set with the local squire, George Verney. Jim Latimer, a local youth follows one of the girls - Sharon Crossthwaite - as she makes her way home along the river, he catches up with her and makes her feel very uneasy.
Sam is wanting to buy himself a sheepdog puppy, he argues with his friend Hilly as he is trying to con him into buying a non pedigree sheepdog. Trash is thrown out of The Woolpack and threatened with the police. Sam gives him some money. Jim has disappeared from the sheepdog trials and his friends search for him, meanwhile Jim is taunting Sharon by the riverside and will not let her go home. Sam is pleased when he is offered a lift in Verney's Rolls Royce. Amos is jealous when he sees Henry and Annie together.
Jim eventually gives up waiting for Sharon to emerge from her hiding place in the abbey. Beryl Crossthwaite is frantic with worry. Annie suggests calling the police. Jim goes straight to The Woolpack for a drink and it is here that P.C. Ball questions him about Sharon's disappearance, he claims not to have seen her since the sheepdog trials. Henry has dinner with Verney who admits that he regrets not having any children. Sharon returns home and tells her mother that she felt ill and had to rest which was why she did not come straight home.
Annie asks Matt and Joe to look over the millhouse as she has seen a light on. Jack lets Trash stay on at the millhouse if he runs errands for him. Sharon sneaks her building society book out of the house. Jim tells Amos that he has been laid off work. Henry needs to know Jack's whereabouts so he can get him to sign some papers to change the ownership of Emmerdale Farm. Henry stays for dinner at the farmhouse. Amos takes a message from Wallace for Jack. Trash goes to The Woolpack to buy drink for Jack. Amos thinks that he must have stolen the money. Jack tells Trash to have a wash. Sharon has drawn out her life savings from the building society, she is on her own in the house counting out the money when Jim calls round. He forces his way into the house, sees the money lying on the table and grabs her.
Jack is hiding out in the millhouse trying to write his second novel. He still cannot persuade Trash to wash. Sam arrives at The Woolpack with his new puppy dog and he mentions that he has seen Jack with a woman in the village. Annie and Henry are surprised as they have both been trying to find him. There is a strained atmosphere at the Verneys as Laura tells George she wants a divorce and admits to being unfaithful. Beryl arrives at the farm where she is worried as Sharon has not been home all night. Trash complains about Jack's typewriter keeping him awake all night but Jack tells him he saw him snoring. Reverend Ruskin calls in at The Woolpack for a drink to the surprise of the regulars. He asks Amos if he is willing to give a lady who has just come out of prison a job as a barmaid. Joe finds out that Sharon withdrew £50 from her savings the day she disappeared. Verney struggles to understand why Laura wants a divorce, she tells him she's had enough of him.
Joe and Frank discuss Marian and Jack. Henry tells Annie that Emmerdale Farm needs a telephone, he asks Peggy to do the accounts for the company. Jack visits Frank to tell him that he will be able to be his best man. Laura takes an interest in Jack - the feeling seems to be mutual. Jack visits the farm where Annie tells him off for not visiting sooner and asks what happened with Marian. Peggy is not feeling very well.
Peggy has to go into hospital for observation. Amos tells Reverend Ruskin that he will give Alison a trial at The Woolpack, the vicar is impressed not suspecting that Amos has an ulterior motive. George asks Frank to shoe his hunt horses but Frank refuses saying that he is against bloodsports. Laura and Jack meet again and she invites him for a drink. Jack rushes up to the farmhouse to see how Peggy is and he shows Annie the watch found by Trash, she recognises it belongs to Sharon. Trash is absorbed by Jack's book. Jack questions him about the watch and he gets upset.
A panicked Trash makes a desperate escape from Mill Cottage in order to avoid being locked up again, but has a fall from the second storey window. A background check on Trash leaves many surprises.
Following Trash's death, Jack follows Laura to London. Ex-criminal Alison meets Amos in hopes of getting a job at The Woolpack.
Frank and Janie discuss their wedding preparations with Edward, whilst Alison proves to be a hit with the Woolpack regulars.
Frank has taken Janie home as she is upset and returns to speak to Reverend Ruskin alone. He gives them both his blessing. Peggy's concerned that Jack's affair with Laura may affect Henry and George's friendship. PC Hallam looks for Jack saying he's wanted for the inquest on Monday. Matt mentions Joe may have a number for him in London. In London, Jack and Laura are at Wallace's place, they ignore the phone as it rings. Reverend Ruskin talks to George about Frank's eviction notice from Dale Properties asking if he knows them. Verney says he does.
Jack is forced to return to Beckindale for the inquest into Trash's death. Meanwhile, Matt Skilbeck discovers a rotten beam in Jameson's Farm, meaning the place could cave in at any minute.
As the verdict for Trash's inquest is revealed to be accidental death, Jack feels Trash has been let down by society. He decides to hold a funeral, but is even more disappointed when he is the only attendee.
George goes on a mission to hunt down the person responsible for trashing his good name, and attacks Jack when Laura reveals it was him.
George has a doctor sent round for Jack, but after the visit, Jack begins to experience delayed shock.
Jack has been diagnosed with shock and concussion following George's attack. Penny arrives to find her dad but is distraught to discover he recently died.
Joe is jealous when Jack and Penny begin a romance. Edward feels guilty that he couldn't visit an old woman before she died, despite Liz's comforting words.
Wedding bells ring as Edward marries Frank and Janie. Meanwhile, Penny reveals to Joe that Trash became mentally unstable following an accident prior to his arrival in the village.
Edward continues to feel dejected following the death of Mrs Hinton. Joe is infuriated when Penny forgets their trip in favour of spending more time with Jack, prompting him to leave home.
Jack reveals that he is not romantically interested in Penny, leading to a reconciliation between her and Joe. Matt and Peggy plan to move into the newly-renovated Jameson's Farm, soon to be renamed to Hawthorn Cottage.
Murderous Jim sets his stalkery eyes on Penny. Joe discovers Inglebrook House on fire and rushes to call the fire brigade.
Henry discovers the Inglebrook House fire was caused by a burning coal falling on the rug. Peggy goes into labour and gives birth to a baby boy and girl.
Crazy Jim tries to get closer to Penny by lying about Sharon and Trash. Meanwhile, Henry proposes to Alison, but she is unsure about remarrying.
Jack and Edward walk in on Jim strangling Penny and call the police. Annie and Beryl are shocked when Jim confesses to Sharon's murder. Meanwhile, Alison decides she needs a break from the village following Amos's proposal.
Penny arranges for her friend Gwen to stay with her, whilst Matt and Henry argue over the piggery, and the Sugdens leave Henry thinking.
Penny's friend Gwen arrives in the village, but Jack isn't happy to discover she has brought a friend. Later, David finds a skull at Mill Cottage.
Peggy returns home from hospital with the twins. Henry begins adjusting to farm life as he milks a cow for the first time.
Henry is angry that development at the building site has been held up by the skull discovery, while David is worried that Jack will take Gwen from him.
Joe decides to buy a motorbike, whilst Jack and David find themselves at loggerheads yet again.
Buckley disrupts the building of the piggery, as a young girl is accidentally buried. As she is rushed to hospital, Henry tells Buckley to not work on the piggery.
Frank and Janie return from their honeymoon, Joe and Penny reconcile, and David comes down with constipation.
When Penny laughs off Joe's proposal, he goes missing. Fortunately, Peggy finds him a few hours later.
Annie takes Sam to the doctors, and is surprised to find that Maurice Grant has been replaced by Clare Scott. A man is impressed with and buys some of David's paintings.
Clare prepares to take over from Maurice. Liz collapses after an agonising back injury.
Clare can't find what's wrong with Liz, while Matt informs the family that Peggy doesn't want the twins christened. Nicholas offers Penny a job as a receptionist at his hotel.
Edward discovers that Jim is in a psychiatric ward until his trial, and Joe purchases a motorbike to the disappointment of Annie.
Jack returns from London, while Nicholas gets an art critic to look at David's paintings.
David has his dreams shattered when Angus tells him he is untalented. He is shocked to get back home and find Gwen and Jack together in his bed. Meanwhile, Joe has problems with his new motorbike and almost misses his date with Penny.
David explodes at Jack but Jack makes David realise he was being used.
As David's friends and the Sugdens celebrate his birthday, he reveals that he and Gwen have decided to return to Cardiff that day.
Penny finds herself angering Joe, and it looks like their relationship is reaching its end. Joe fails his motorbike license test.
After the downfall of Joe and Penny's relationship, she leaves for Birmingham, only telling Jack.
Amos tries to find a new barmaid for The Woolpack but to no avail. Joe considers selling his motorbike as Penny has gone.
Amos is worried when the brewery informs him that there has been a complaint, but is relieved when it reveals to be for an unimportant reason. Jack is not happy when Janie accidentally smashes one of his windows, while Henry receives a letter from Alison informing him of her return.
Clare's mother and boyfriend come to see her, and Simon proposes to Clare. Janie helps a deaf elderly woman to the doctors.
Clare tells Simon that she doesn't want to marry yet. He decides to return home with Mavis. Clare refers Liz to an osteopath regarding her back, whilst Sam and Peggy row over christening the twins.
Annie helps Ronnie with the Crossthwaite's move to Hull. Meanwhile, Alison returns and begins looking for a job.
Amos offers Alison her job back but she declined, while Edward recommends her to Amy.
Peggy relents and decides to have the twins christened, but tragedy strikes when Peggy collapses and is rushed to hospital. Bobby falls running away from Joe and makes allegations that Joe hit him.
Peggy has died in hospital and the Sugdens are in mourning. Edward arrives to comfort the family and begin planning the funeral.
Grief strikes following Peggy's funeral as Henry snaps at Amos. Bob arrives and offers Matt a job that would be hard to turn down.
Janie helps out the Sugdens by looking after the twins. Henry's businessman side comes out and Annie calls him insensitive.
Amy tries to play matchmaker between Henry and Alison while Carol plays with Joe's heart.
Clare tells Amy that she can no longer run the shop, whilst Mr Lodz talks to Jack about turning his book into a film.
Amos meets his temporary replacement at The Woolpack, whilst Joe is shocked when Carol makes a declaration of love to him.
Bob tries to talk Matt round to accepting the farm manager job. Amos and Alison row as Amos accuses her of playing off him and Henry.