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- TV Show Ended -
There is no Next Episode of Downton Abbey planned.
Oscar-winning actress Shirley MacLaine joins the cast of the period drama as Cora's mother Martha, who makes a grand entrance when she arrives at Downton for Matthew and Mary's wedding. However, with the couple struggling to stay united as their big day looms, will Martha's Atlantic crossing have been for nothing? Meanwhile, Mr Carson runs the rule over new footman Alfred, and Robert receives news that could leave him facing the greatest crisis of his life - and plunge the rest of the household into chaos.
With the estate's future hanging in the balance, Mary hopes to receive a bailout from her grandmother Martha - and with Violet's help, tries to make sure Downton puts on a bigger show than ever before with a grand party for friends and neighbours. Meanwhile, Mrs Hughes hears worrying news, and O'Brien's efforts to boost Alfred's progress meets with disapproval from Thomas.
Edith's big day finally arrives, but will her enthusiasm convince the family that Strallan's age doesn't matter? Meanwhile, Mrs Hughes anxiously awaits her results, Anna makes a breakthrough to help Bates, and Mary takes matters into her own hands to secure the estate's future - but the personal cost could be high.
Branson's political views land him in trouble and Sybil's loyalty is tested to the limit, while Ethel makes a difficult decision about her son's future. Anna wonders what is causing Bates' silence, and Carson begins recruiting a footman, with promising candidate Jimmy (Ed Speleers, Eragon) sparking immediate interest below stairs.
An exciting offer for Edith divides opinion, Isobel throws Ethel a lifeline and Anna's perseverance finally pays off. Daisy is unhappy when Alfred takes a keen interest in newly arrived maid Ivy, while Matthew's concerns about the estate grow - but are his protests falling on deaf ears?
Tempers fray as a kind gesture by Isobel backfires, while Mary fights Branson's corner when his decisions are put under scrutiny. Robert and Cora's relationship is under pressure, but can Violet make them see things differently? Bates goes to extreme lengths as his chance of freedom slips away.
It's a happy day for Downton as Anna's patience is rewarded, while Edith receives admiration from an unexpected quarter. Matthew refuses to back down over the estate management, but will his tactics pay off? Branson's plan for the christening causes consternation, as does the arrival of his brother, and O'Brien's motives are unclear as she counsels Thomas.
There is excitement throughout the house and nearby village as the annual cricket match draws near, and the event brings out Robert's competitive side. Violet's great-niece Rose arrives, but a trip to London reveals there is more to her than meets the eye, while Matthew and Mary seem to be keeping secrets from each other. Thomas's future lies appears to be uncertain, but he may have found an unexpected ally in Bates