1988 was Emmerdale's 17th year. Storylines included Alan Turner going into partnership at Home Farm with Joe Sugden, Dolly Skilbeck's affair with Stephen Fuller, Kathy Bates' wedding to Jackie Merrick, the beginnings of Joe Sugden's relationship with Kate Hughes and Nick Bates foiling a post office raid. 102 episodes were broadcast this year.


1988 cast

The cast of Emmerdale Farm in 1988.

The previous year, Stuart Doughty was announced as Michael Russell's successor as producer. Doughty began his run with Episode 1235 (30th March 1988). Having left Brookside to join Emmerdale Farm, Doughty was keen to bring the show up to date by increasing the amount of scenes per episode and perking up cliffhangers to encourage audiences to come back for the next episode. He also expressed an interest in taking the show out of its reliant studio set, wanting to take advantage of both the rural setting of the show and other locations. As a result, the show did its first ever filming abroad as Kathy and Jackie Merrick enjoyed their honeymoon in Tunisia.

Finally, on 6th January, the programme became fully networked for the first time - meaning that the same episode was shown at exactly the same time in all ITV regions - in the 7.00pm slot. A massive achievement for the programme, this enabled publicity for the serial to be far easier and an extra push was made in London, the hardest region for the programme to crack, with an extensive billboard campaign.

There were a number of cast additions this year. Madeleine Howard was cast as Sarah Connolly. The character only appeared this year in April but would return as a regular in 1989. Joe Sugden found romance with Kate Hughes, portrayed by Sally Knyvette, and Kate's two children, Rachel and Mark Hughes, also arrived in the village soon after, portrayed by real life brother and sister Glenda and Craig McKay. Elsewhere, Richard Franklin debuted as Denis Rigg in August and Debbi Blyth and Jack Carr returned as Marian Rosetti and Tom Merrick respectively. For both characters, this would be the last time they appeared in the serial. Clive Hornby also took a break from the programme in the summer, returning later the following year.


# Ep.
Date Writer Director Viewing
11212Wednesday 6th JanuaryHelen GreavesRichard Holthousen/kn/k
21213Thursday 7th JanuaryHelen GreavesRichard Holthousen/kn/k
31214Wednesday 13th JanuaryDavid LaneRichard Holthousen/kn/k
41215Thursday 14th JanuaryDavid LaneRichard Holthousen/kn/k
51215aWednesday 20th JanuaryAndrew HoldenAlister Hallumn/kn/k
61216Thursday 21st JanuaryJackie NeweyAlister Hallumn/kn/k
71217Wednesday 27th JanuaryJackie NeweyAlister Hallumn/kn/k
81218Thursday 28th JanuaryJackie NeweyAlister Hallumn/kn/k
91219Wednesday 3rd FebruaryJackie NeweyAlister Hallumn/kn/k
101220Thursday 4th FebruaryJackie NeweyAlister Hallumn/kn/k
111221Wednesday 10th FebruaryTim VaughanBill Brycen/kn/k
121222Thursday 11th FebruaryTim VaughanBill Brycen/kn/k
131223Wednesday 17th FebruaryTim VaughanChris Lovettn/kn/k
141224Thursday 18th FebruaryKen BlakesonChris Lovettn/kn/k
151225Wednesday 24th FebruaryKen BlakesonChris Lovettn/kn/k
161226Thursday 25th FebruaryKen BlakesonChris Lovettn/kn/k
171227Wednesday 2nd MarchKen BlakesonChris Lovettn/kn/k
181228Thursday 3rd MarchKen BlakesonChris Lovettn/kn/k
191229Wednesday 9th MarchSteve TraffordAlan Marsdenn/kn/k
201230Thursday 10th MarchSteve TraffordAlan Marsdenn/kn/k
211231Wednesday 16th MarchSteve TraffordAlan Marsdenn/kn/k
221232Thursday 17th MarchCharles HodgesAlan Marsdenn/kn/k
231233Wednesday 23rd MarchCharles HodgesAlan Marsdenn/kn/k
241234Thursday 24th MarchCharles HodgesAlan Marsdenn/kn/k
251235Wednesday 30th MarchCharles HodgesMervyn Cummingn/kn/k
261236Thursday 31st MarchDave ParkerMervyn Cummingn/kn/k
271237Wednesday 6th AprilDave ParkerMervyn Cummingn/kn/k
281238Thursday 7th AprilAndrew HoldenMervyn Cummingn/kn/k
291239Wednesday 13th AprilAndrew HoldenMervyn Cummingn/kn/k
301240Thursday 14th AprilAndrew HoldenMervyn Cummingn/kn/k
311241Wednesday 20th AprilAndrew HoldenNicholas Prossern/kn/k
321242Thursday 21st AprilJohn ChambersNicholas Prossern/kn/k
331243Wednesday 27th AprilJohn ChambersNicholas Prossern/kn/k
341244Thursday 28th AprilJohn ChambersNicholas Prossern/kn/k
351245Wednesday 4th MayJohn ChambersNicholas Prossern/kn/k
361246Thursday 5th MayJohn ChambersNicholas Prossern/kn/k
371247Wednesday 11th MayJames RobsonTerry Dawn/kn/k
381248Thursday 12th MayJames RobsonTerry Dawn/kn/k
391249Wednesday 18th MayJames RobsonTerry Dawn/kn/k
401250Thursday 19th MayJames RobsonTerry Dawn/kn/k
411251Wednesday 25th MayJackie NeweyTerry Dawn/kn/k
421252Thursday 26th MayJackie NeweyTerry Dawn/kn/k
431253Wednesday 1st JuneMichael RussellWilliam Slatern/kn/k
441254Thursday 2nd JuneMichael RussellWilliam Slatern/kn/k
451255Wednesday 8th JuneMichael RussellWilliam Slatern/kn/k
461256Thursday 9th JuneMichael RussellWilliam Slatern/kn/k
471257Thursday 16th JuneMichael RussellWilliam Slatern/kn/k
481258Thursday 23rd JuneMichael RussellWilliam Slatern/kn/k
491259Wednesday 29th JunePeter DillonSue Butterworthn/kn/k
501260Thursday 30th JunePeter DillonSue Butterworthn/kn/k
511261Wednesday 6th JulyPeter J HammondSue Butterworthn/kn/k
521262Thursday 7th JulyPeter J HammondSue Butterworthn/kn/k
531263Wednesday 13th JulyJohn CanonSue Butterworthn/kn/k
541264Thursday 14th JulyJohn CanonSue Butterworthn/kn/k
551265Wednesday 20th JulyDave ParkerSue Butterworthn/kn/k
561266Thursday 21st JulyDave ParkerSue Butterworthn/kn/k
571267Wednesday 27th JulyGary HopkinsTom Kingdonn/kn/k
581268Thursday 28th JulyGary HopkinsTom Kingdonn/kn/k
591269Wednesday 3rd AugustCharles HodgesTom Kingdonn/kn/k
601270Thursday 4th AugustCharles HodgesTom Kingdonn/kn/k
611271Wednesday 10th AugustHarry DuffinTom Kingdonn/kn/k
621272Thursday 11th AugustHarry DuffinTom Kingdonn/kn/k
631273Wednesday 17th AugustJames RobsonMichael E. Briantn/kn/k
641274Thursday 18th AugustJames RobsonMichael E. Briantn/kn/k
651275Wednesday 24th AugustPatrea SmallacombeMichael E. Briantn/kn/k
661276Thursday 25th AugustPatrea SmallacombeMichael E. Briantn/kn/k
671277Wednesday 31st AugustDave ParkerMichael E. Briantn/kn/k
681278Thursday 1st SeptemberDave ParkerMichael E. Briantn/kn/k
691279Wednesday 7th SeptemberJackie NeweyMervyn Cummingn/kn/k
701280Thursday 8th SeptemberJackie NeweyMervyn Cummingn/kn/k
711281Wednesday 14th SeptemberBarry WoodwardMervyn Cummingn/kn/k
721282Thursday 15th SeptemberBarry WoodwardMervyn Cummingn/kn/k
731283Wednesday 21st SeptemberHarry DuffinMervyn Cummingn/kn/k
741284Thursday 22nd SeptemberHarry DuffinMervyn Cummingn/kn/k
751285Wednesday 28th SeptemberGary HopkinsChris Lovettn/kn/k
761286Thursday 29th SeptemberGary HopkinsChris Lovettn/kn/k
771287Wednesday 5th OctoberPeter DillonChris Lovettn/kn/k
781288Thursday 6th OctoberPeter DillonChris Lovettn/kn/k
791289Wednesday 12th OctoberPeter J HammondChris Lovettn/kn/k
801290Thursday 13th OctoberPeter J HammondChris Lovettn/kn/k
811291Wednesday 19th OctoberDave ParkerJohn Darnelln/kn/k
821292Thursday 20th OctoberDave ParkerJohn Darnelln/kn/k
831293Wednesday 26th OctoberBarry WoodwardJohn Darnelln/kn/k
841294Thursday 27th OctoberBarry WoodwardJohn Darnelln/kn/k
851295Wednesday 2nd NovemberCharles HodgesJohn Darnelln/kn/k
861296Thursday 3rd NovemberCharles HodgesJohn Darnell11,750,000n/k
871297Wednesday 9th NovemberJames RobsonDavid Richardsonn/kn/k
881298Thursday 10th NovemberJames RobsonDavid Richardsonn/kn/k
891299Wednesday 16th NovemberBarry WoodwardDavid Richardsonn/kn/k
901300Thursday 17th NovemberBarry WoodwardDavid Richardsonn/kn/k
911301Wednesday 23rd NovemberGary HopkinsDavid Richardsonn/kn/k
921302Thursday 24th NovemberGary HopkinsDavid Richardsonn/kn/k
931303Wednesday 30th NovemberPatrea SmallacombeMichael Brayshawn/kn/k
941304Thursday 1st DecemberPatrea SmallacombeMichael Brayshawn/kn/k
951305Wednesday 7th DecemberJackie NeweyMichael Brayshaw11,450,000n/k
961306Thursday 8th DecemberJackie NeweyMichael Brayshaw11,350,000n/k
971307Wednesday 14th DecemberJames RobsonMichael Brayshawn/kn/k
981308Thursday 15th DecemberJames RobsonMichael Brayshawn/kn/k
991309Wednesday 21st DecemberHarry DuffinHenry Fostern/kn/k
1001310Thursday 22nd DecemberHarry DuffinHenry Fostern/kn/k
1011311Wednesday 28th DecemberPeter J HammondHenry Foster12,000,00018
1021312Thursday 29th DecemberPeter J HammondHenry Foster11,850,00020

Main CastEdit

Ranking Character Played by Duration Number of Episodes Running total Previous year's ranking
1Dolly SkilbeckJean RogersFull year1029001
2Matt SkilbeckFrederick PyneFull year10012683
2Amos BrearlyRonald MagillFull year10012606
2Annie SugdenSheila MercierFull year100122612
2Joe SugdenFrazer HinesFull year10010384
6Henry WilksArthur PentelowFull year9812526
7Kathy Bates/MerrickMalandra BurrowsFull year9528511
8Alan TurnerRichard ThorpFull year945734
8Caroline BatesDiana DaviesFull year944404
10Seth ArmstrongStan RichardsFull year9271310
10Sandie MerrickJane HutchesonFull year9255910
10Nick BatesCy ChadwickFull year9219415
13Jackie MerrickIan SharrockFull year916686
14Phil PearcePeter AlexanderFull year8320414
15Archie BrooksTony PittsFull year7926512
16Jack SugdenClive HornbyUntil September648122
17Eric PollardChristopher ChittellJanuary to February, April to July, September onwards5512120
18Jock MacDonaldDrew DawsonUntil May and from September4421118
18Robert SugdenRichard SmithUntil May and July to September4411417
20Ruth PenningtonJulia ChambersUntil July429119
21Donald HintonHugh ManningJanuary to February, July to September, November and December3657321
21Kate HughesSally KnyvetteFrom August3636 -
23Rachel HughesGlenda McKayFrom September2626 -
24Bill MiddletonJohnny CaesarUntil April and from October2415122
24Mark HughesCraig McKayFrom September2424 -
26Denis RiggRichard FranklinAugust to November2020 -
27Samuel SkilbeckBenjamin WhiteheadJanuary, March to April, June, November and December15298 16
28Marian RosettiDebbi BlytheJuly to September106123
29Sarah ConnollyMadeleine HowardApril only77 -
30Tom MerrickJack CarrJanuary to February only570 -


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Who lives whereEdit

to be added

Awards and NominationsEdit

to be added

Emmerdale Farm in the 1980s
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