Carson is forced to accept female staff serving in the dining room and Downton Abbey is turned into a convalescent home to accommodate an influx of wounded soldiers.
It is November 1916, and the family and servants are getting the house ready for a concert to raise funds to treat more casualties from the front. Bates returns from London with a proposal for Anna, while Isobel informs Robert and Cora that Matthew is engaged and wants to bring his fiancee to Downton. O'Brien plays a trick on new maid Ethel after taking an instant dislike to her. Costume drama, starring Maggie Smith, Hugh Bonneville and Elizabeth McGovern.
Isobel suggests using Downton as a place of convalescence following a distressing incident at the village hospital. Shell-shocked new valet Lang arrives as William gets his call-up papers, and Carson strives to keep standards high, but suffers a panic attack in front of the family. Lady Rosamund is eager to unearth Lavinia and Carlisle's secret after overhearing them arguing, and romance blossoms for both Edith and Mary. Costume drama, starring Jim Carter, Samantha Bond and Cal Macaninch.
The wounded officers arrive at Downton and Matthew suggests he bring General Sir Herbert Strutt to inspect the new convalescent home - but Branson decides to spoil the visit after failing his army medical. Meanwhile, William's return results in an awkward surprise for Daisy, and Violet and Rosamund discover Lavinia's past misdeeds. Costume drama, starring Dan Stevens, Allen Leech, Thomas Howes, Maggie Smith and Zoe Boyle.
Ethel's flirting with Major Bryant lands her in trouble as preparations get under way for a concert at Downton. Tensions flare between Isobel and Cora, Edith receives worrying news about Matthew and William, while Branson declares his feelings for Sybil. Mrs Bird's soup kitchen receives a helping hand from Daisy and Mrs Patmore. Costume drama, starring Penelope Wilton and Elizabeth McGovern.
The entire household is shaken by bad news from the front, and Daisy's relationship with William moves faster than she would like. Meanwhile, Mary pays a high price for obtaining Carlisle's assistance when Vera returns to Downton threatening to expose old secrets. Costume drama, starring Sophie McShera, Thomas Howes, Michelle Dockery, Iain Glen and Maria Doyle Kennedy.
A Canadian officer is brought to Downton for recuperation and disrupts everything. Ethel hears distressing news, Bates makes another attempt to settle matters with Vera, while Carson receives a tempting offer. Matthew gets used to life in a wheelchair with Mary as his round-the-clock carer. Costume drama, starring Amy Nuttall, Brendan Coyle, Jim Carter, Dan Stevens and Michelle Dockery.
As the residents try to return to normal life following the armistice, a new development stuns them. Meanwhile, Carlisle puts Anna in a difficult position, Bates reels from the news about Vera, and Thomas embarks on a new money-making scheme. Costume drama, starring Iain Glen, Joanne Froggatt, Brendan Coyle and Rob James-Collier.
The wedding approaches and excitement is in the air, but Branson's plans could rattle everyone. Spanish flu reaches the house and a desperate Thomas looks for a way to re-establish himself. Ethel faces a dilemma when the Bryants return with a heartbreaking proposition, and a decisive Anna forces Bates to think about their future. Costume drama, starring Allen Leech, Rob James-Collier, Amy Nuttall, Joanne Froggatt and Brendan Coyle. Last in the series.