1978 was Emmerdale's 7th year. Storylines included a mine explosion, the marriage of Matt Skilbeck and Dolly Acaster, the death of George Verney and the purchase of his land by NY Estates and an armed robbery at The Woolpack. Michael Glynn continued as producer for the second year running. 75 episodes were broadcast.


Stan Richards report

Stan Richards joins the cast on a recurring basis as Seth Armstrong.

ITV's decision to move the programme up the schedule proved to pay off as episodes began breaking into the network top twenty of the AGB ratings with 17 episodes out of the 75 broadcast appearing.

Stan Richards' arrival was the only notable change to the cast this year as Seth Armstrong appeared for the first time in Episode 449. Initially beginning as a secondary character, it would be another two years before Richards would begin to appear as a regular, for now only appearing when storylines demanded.

Gail Harrison returned as Marian Wilks for seven episodes from October. This would be the last time Harrison appeared in the series. When the character of Marian appeared again, nine years later, she would instead be portrayed by Debbi Blythe.

After two years of working as script editor, Chris Barlas departed the company to focus on writing. He was succeeded by Michael Russell who had previously worked in advertising and public relations. Russell had also previously worked on a farm and the Milk Marketing Board so, despite this being his first television post, was able to bring some experience to the programme.

The programme took another summer break this year, remaining off air for July and August. Thames Television took the opportunity to revise its scheduling for the September return, choosing to broadcast Crossroads across Monday to Thursday in a 6.35pm slot. As a result, the programme moved to 6.30pm on a Friday while the Tuesday episode remained untouched.

A seventeen day long strike at Yorkshire Television, caused by a dispute on a productivity agreement, prevented the last three episodes of Emmerdale Farm, covering Christmas in Beckindale, going out as intended. These were shown when the strike ended at the start of January 1979.


# Ep.
Date Writer Director Viewing
1415Tuesday 10th JanuaryWilliam CorlettDerek Martinusn/kn/k
2416Thursday 12th JanuaryWilliam CorlettDerek Martinusn/kn/k
3417Tuesday 17th JanuaryNeville SiggsLen Lurcuckn/kn/k
4418Thursday 19th JanuaryNeville SiggsLen Lurcuckn/kn/k
5419Tuesday 24th JanuaryNeville SiggsLen Lurcuckn/kn/k
6420Thursday 26th JanuaryNeville SiggsLen Lurcuckn/kn/k
7421Tuesday 31st JanuaryJohn FosterLen Lurcuckn/kn/k
8422Thursday 2nd FebruaryJohn FosterLen Lurcuckn/kn/k
9423Tuesday 7th FebruaryJohn FosterLen Lurcuckn/kn/k
10424Thursday 9th FebruaryJohn FosterLen Lurcuckn/kn/k
11425Tuesday 14th FebruaryChris BarlasMatthew Robinsonn/kn/k
12426Thursday 16th FebruaryChris BarlasMatthew Robinsonn/kn/k
13427Tuesday 21st FebruaryChris BarlasMatthew Robinsonn/kn/k
14428Thursday 23rd FebruaryChris BarlasMatthew Robinsonn/kn/k
15429Tuesday 28th FebruaryChris BarlasMatthew Robinsonn/kn/k
16430Thursday 2nd MarchChris BarlasMatthew Robinsonn/kn/k
17431Tuesday 7th MarchAndy BakerDarrol Blake15,050,00016
18432Thursday 9th MarchAndy BakerDarrol Blaken/kn/k
19433Tuesday 14th MarchAndy BakerDarrol Blaken/kn/k
20434Thursday 16th MarchAndy BakerDarrol Blaken/kn/k
21435Tuesday 21st MarchAndy BakerDarrol Blaken/kn/k
22436Thursday 23rd MarchAndy BakerDarrol Blaken/kn/k
23437Tuesday 4th AprilNeville SiggsLen Lurcuck13,550,00018
24438Thursday 6th AprilNeville SiggsLen Lurcuck12,900,00020
25439Tuesday 11th AprilNeville SiggsLen Lurcuck13,150,00021
26440Thursday 13th AprilNeville SiggsLen Lurcuckn/kn/k
27441Tuesday 18th AprilNeville SiggsLen Lurcuck13,250,00019
28442Thursday 20th AprilNeville SiggsLen Lurcuckn/kn/k
29443Tuesday 25th AprilKevin LaffanGerald Blake12,800,00020
30444Thursday 27th AprilKevin LaffanGerald Blaken/kn/k
31445Tuesday 2nd MayKevin LaffanGerald Blaken/kn/k
32446Thursday 4th MayKevin LaffanGerald Blaken/kn/k
33447Tuesday 9th MayKevin LaffanGerald Blaken/kn/k
34448Thursday 11th MayKevin LaffanGerald Blaken/kn/k
35449Tuesday 16th MayAnne ValeryPaddy Russell11,450,00020
36450Thursday 18th MayAnne ValeryPaddy Russelln/kn/k
37451Tuesday 23rd MayAnne ValeryPaddy Russell10,950,00018
38452Thursday 25th MayAnne ValeryPaddy Russelln/kn/k
39453Tuesday 30th MayAnne ValeryPaddy Russelln/kn/k
40454Thursday 8th JuneAnne ValeryPaddy Russelln/kn/k
41455Tuesday 13th JuneKevin LaffanDerek Martinus10,950,00020
42456Thursday 15th JuneKevin LaffanDerek Martinusn/kn/k
43457Tuesday 20th JuneKevin LaffanDerek Martinus10,450,00018
44458Thursday 22nd JuneKevin LaffanDerek Martinus10,600,00017
45459Tuesday 27th JuneKevin LaffanDerek Martinus11,450,00016
46460Thursday 29th JuneKevin LaffanDerek Martinus12,350,0008
47461Tuesday 5th SeptemberWilliam CorlettPaddy Russelln/kn/k
48462Thursday 7th SeptemberWilliam CorlettPaddy Russelln/kn/k
49463Tuesday 12th SeptemberWilliam CorlettPaddy Russelln/kn/k
50464Thursday 14th SeptemberWilliam CorlettPaddy Russelln/kn/k
51465Tuesday 19th SeptemberWilliam CorlettPaddy Russelln/kn/k
52466Thursday 21st SeptemberWilliam CorlettPaddy Russelln/kn/k
53467Tuesday 26th SeptemberKevin LaffanDavid Reynoldsn/kn/k
54468Thursday 28th SeptemberKevin LaffanDavid Reynoldsn/kn/k
55469Tuesday 3rd OctoberKevin LaffanDavid Reynoldsn/kn/k
56470Thursday 5th OctoberKevin LaffanDavid Reynoldsn/kn/k
57471Tuesday 10th OctoberKevin LaffanDavid Reynoldsn/kn/k
58472Thursday 12th OctoberKevin LaffanDavid Reynoldsn/kn/k
59473Tuesday 17th OctoberChris BarlasPaddy Russelln/kn/k
60474Thursday 19th OctoberChris BarlasPaddy Russell13,300,00020
61475Tuesday 24th OctoberChris BarlasPaddy Russelln/kn/k
62476Thursday 26th OctoberChris BarlasPaddy Russelln/kn/k
63477Tuesday 31st OctoberChris BarlasPaddy Russelln/kn/k
64478Thursday 2nd NovemberChris BarlasPaddy Russell12,900,00019
65479Tuesday 7th NovemberAndy BakerLen Lurcuckn/kn/k
66480Thursday 9th NovemberAndy BakerLen Lurcuckn/kn/k
67481Tuesday 14th NovemberAndy BakerLen Lurcuckn/kn/k
68482Thursday 16th NovemberAndy BakerLen Lurcuckn/kn/k
69483Tuesday 21st NovemberAndy BakerLen Lurcuckn/kn/k
70484Thursday 23rd NovemberAndy BakerLen Lurcuckn/kn/k
71485Tuesday 28th NovemberMalcolm LynchNick Gray14,550,00017
72486Thursday 30th NovemberMalcolm LynchNick Grayn/kn/k
73487Tuesday 5th DecemberMalcolm LynchNick Gray14,100,00016
74488Thursday 7th DecemberMalcolm LynchNick Grayn/kn/k
75489Thursday 14th DecemberMalcolm LynchNick Grayn/kn/k

Main CastEdit

Ranking Character Played by Duration Number of Episodes Running total Previous year's ranking
1Annie SugdenSheila MercierFull year754711
1Matt SkilbeckFrederick PyneFull year754661
1Amos BrearlyRonald MagillFull year754591
1Henry WilksArthur PentelowFull year754591
1Dolly Acaster/SkilbeckKatharine BarkerFull year751307
6Sam PearsonToke TownleyFull year744426
7Joe SugdenFrazer HinesFull year73475 1
8Donald HintonHugh ManningFull year69859
9Seth ArmstrongStan RichardsMay to June, October to November1717 -
10Marian WilksGail HarrisonOctober to November740 -


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Who lives whereEdit

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Awards and NominationsEdit

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Emmerdale Farm in the 1970s
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