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The 1981 ITV Strike was caused by a dispute at Yorkshire Television, who called a halt to filming in October 1981 as seventy electrician staff went on strike in response to four workers being suspended. The strike lasted from the 1st October through to the 29th. The programme only had enough episodes banked to air until Episode 696 which aired on 5th November and, as a result, was pulled from the schedule a month early, with repeats going out in the afternoon to keep the show in the public eye. Shooting began for the next block once the dispute was resolved but these would not be seen on screen until January 1982, beginning with Episode 703. As a result of the strike, Episode 697 to Episode 702 never made it to the screen and though Lance Parkin's 30 Years of Emmerdale book notes that the episodes were "made but never transmitted", there is no evidence to suggest that when production resumed these episodes were filmed.

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