The series debuted on Monday 16th October at 1.30pm as part of a new experiment in ITV's daytime schedule and was therefore Britan's first ever lunch-time drama serial. The programme was not initally shown in all regions and those that did broadcast it sometimes opted to choose different timeslots, which occasionally meant that some regions would fall behind the Yorkshire Television schedule. This would remain the case until 1988 when the programme became fully networked.
The first episode introduced Emmerdale Farm and its residents - the Sugden family, who would remain a staple in the show until the present day. Outdoor shots of the village were filmed in the real-life village of Arncliffe in North Yorkshire, with outdoor shots at Emmerdale Farm being filmed at Lindley Farm, between Harrogate and Otley. All interior scenes were filmed on videotape in Yorkshire Television's Leeds Studio.
The programme was initially broadcast twice weekly on a Monday and a Tuesday in an afternoon slot and was originally planned and written to run twice weekly for thirteen weeks. By the summer, these plans had changed to increase the serial to run for thirty-nine weeks with the possibility of an extension to two years, if popular.
|1||1||Monday 16th October||Kevin Laffan||Tristan de Vere Cole||2,203,000||n/k|
|2||2||Tuesday 17th October||Kevin Laffan||Tristan de Vere Cole||n/k||n/k|
|3||3||Monday 23rd October||Kevin Laffan||Gordon Flemyng||n/k||n/k|
|4||4||Tuesday 24th October||Kevin Laffan||Gordon Flemyng||n/k||n/k|
|5||5||Monday 30th October||Kevin Laffan||Desmond McCarthy||n/k||n/k|
|6||6||Tuesday 31st October||Kevin Laffan||Desmond McCarthy||n/k||n/k|
|7||7||Monday 6th November||Kevin Laffan||Tristan de Vere Cole||n/k||n/k|
|8||8||Tuesday 7th November||Kevin Laffan||Tristan de Vere Cole||n/k||n/k|
|9||9||Monday 13th November||Kevin Laffan||Gordon Flemyng||n/k||n/k|
|10||10||Tuesday 14th November||Kevin Laffan||Gordon Flemyng||n/k||n/k|
|11||11||Monday 20th November||Kevin Laffan||Desmond McCarthy||n/k||n/k|
|12||12||Tuesday 21st November||Kevin Laffan||Desmond McCarthy||n/k||n/k|
|13||13||Monday 27th November||Neville Siggs||Tristan de Vere Cole||n/k||n/k|
|14||14||Tuesday 28th November||Neville Siggs||Tristan de Vere Cole||n/k||n/k|
|15||15||Monday 4th December||Neville Siggs||Gordon Flemyng||n/k||n/k|
|16||16||Tuesday 5th December||Neville Siggs||Gordon Flemyng||n/k||n/k|
|17||17||Monday 11th December||Neville Siggs||Desmond McCarthy||n/k||n/k|
|18||18||Tuesday 12th December||Neville Siggs||Desmond McCarthy||n/k||n/k|
|19||19||Monday 18th December||Neville Siggs||Tristan de Vere Cole||n/k||n/k|
|20||20||Tuesday 19th December||Neville Siggs||Tristan de Vere Cole||n/k||n/k|
|Ranking||Character||Played by||Duration||Number of Episodes|
|1||Matt Skilbeck||Frederick Pyne||Full year||20|
|1||Peggy Skilbeck||Jo Kendall||Full year||20|
|1||Annie Sugden||Sheila Mercier||Full year||20|
|1||Jack Sugden||Clive Hornby||Full year||20|
|1||Joe Sugden||Frazer Hines||Full year||20|
|1||Marian Wilks||Gail Harrison||Full year||20|
|7||Amos Brearly||Ronald Magill||Full year||19|
|7||Sam Pearson||Toke Townley||Full year||19|
|7||Henry Wilks||Arthur Pentelow||Full year||19|
|10||Janie Harker||Diane Grayson||From November||8|
|11||Ruth Merrick||Lynn Dalby||November only||6|
|11||Tom Merrick||David Hill||November only||6|
|13||Frank Blakey||Eric Allan||From December||4|
- The Sugden and Skilbeck families attend the funeral of Jacob Sugden. Jacob's son, Jack, returns to the village for the first time in eight years after being left Emmerdale Farm in his will. Jack isn't sure what to do with the farm.
- Henry Wilks and his daughter Marian buy the adjoining property of Emmerdale Farm - Inglebrook House. Henry gets off on the wrong foot with the Sugdens when he wants to create a driveway leading through their farm. Marian makes friends with Joe and Jack and they both become romantically interested in her.
- Peggy Skilbeck discovers she is pregnant and asks her husband, Matt, to apply for a job in Bradford hoping they can move away from the farm to the city.
- An old flame of Jack's, Ruth Merrick asks Joe about him as they drink in The Woolpack. When her husband Tom Merrick catches them drinking together, he gets the wrong idea and the pair fight. Knowing that Jack is back in the area and that his wife and Jack used to once be together, Tom jumps at the chance of working on the farm when a position becomes available. Tom drops hints about his and Ruth's eldest son, Jackie Merrick, actually being Jack's son. When Tom tries to blackmail Jack, Jack fires him and The Merricks leave Beckindale for Leeds.
- Jack gets a telegram and rushes off to The Feathers Country Hotel to meet his secret wife. Henry sees him at the hotel with another woman but keeps the news from Marian, trying to persuade her to ask him about another woman as she and Jack grow closer. Joe follows Jack to the hotel and also learns that Jack is married. He starts to drive to Inglebrook to inform Marian but crashes into Henry as he is coming down the driveway, putting them both in hospital. Jack and Marian have a big falling out over marriage and Marian tells him that she despises him.
- Jack begins paying wages to Matt and Joe. He tells Annie that he is wealthy but won't tell her how he got the money.
- Matt goes for an interview for a factory job in Bradford and fails to get it.
- Joe tells Marian that Jack is already married and Henry tells Jack to stay away from Marian when he receives a letter from Tom Merrick. Marian asks Ruth's sister, Janie Harker about Jackie Merrick and she also hints that Jack is the father. Marian tells Jack that she never wants to see him again.
- Fed up with all the bad feeling being caused, Annie gives Jack an ultimatum - stay on the farm or leave - then gives him a fortnight to decide. Jack is unsure what to do and begins to finally try and sort things out. He shows an interest in doing the old millhouse up and goes to London to tie up loose ends.
- Peggy discovers she is expecting twins.
- Joe is let out of hospital, his arm in a sling. He goes to Inglebrook to apologise to Henry for the accident. Henry accepts his apology and upon discovering he has received a summons, Henry tells Joe he will change his story to the police so Joe is in no trouble. Still vying for Marian's affections, Joe sets out to try and better himself, leading to a furious Annie accusing Marian of leading Joe on. Marian and Henry both make it clear to Joe that she is not interested in him romantically.
- Henry begins visiting local farmer Harry Jameson and shows interest in buying his farm.
- Janie Harker begins dating Frank Blakey.
Who lives whereEdit
- The Woolpack - Amos Brearly
- Merricks' Cottage - Tom, Ruth, Jackie and Sandie Merrick (until November)
- The Mill - Vacant
- Smithy Cottage - Frank Blakey
- Jameson's Farm - Harry Jameson
- Inglebrook House - Henry and Marian Wilks (from October).
- Emmerdale Farm - Jacob Sugden (until October), Annie and Joe Sugden, Peggy and Matt Skilbeck, Sam Pearson, Jack Sugden (from October).
Who works whereEdit
- The Woolpack - Amos Brearly
- Beckindale Forge - Frank Blakey
- Emmerdale Farm - Jacob Sugden (until October), Joe Sugden, Matt Skilbeck, Jack Sugden (from October), Tom Merrick (November)
|Emmerdale Farm in the 1970s|
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