Episode 5.01 is the first episode of Series 5. It first aired on the 21st September, 2014 on ITV in the UK. In the US, it first aired on January 4, 2015 on PBS. It takes place shortly after Ramsay MacDonald has become the new Prime Minister (between 9th - 17th February 1924)[1].


Returning to Downton in 1924, a new Labour government heralds changes that are being felt throughout the land, as well as above and below stairs.

Plans for a war memorial unexpectedly pit Carson against Robert and Mrs Hughes. While unwanted female attention spells trouble for Jimmy, Thomas gives Baxter an ultimatum. Branson’s burgeoning friendship causes Robert concern while Mary is ready to find love again. Cracks appear in Edith and Drewe’s special arrangement as she increasingly struggles to keep her emotions in check; this may have disastrous consequences for the whole household.

On Saturday 16th February 1924, Lord and Lady Grantham hold a party at Downton to celebrate their 34th wedding anniversary. A careless action by Lady Edith causes a fire to break out in her room.


Cast List

External Links

  1. Radio Times Series 5 Episode 1: About this programme • Cast and Crew (review by Alison Graham)
  2. Downton Abbey Season 5 Premiere Recap: On the Brink at Wet Paint


  1. Robert and Cora's anniversary party falls on Saturday the 16th. In 1924, the 16th only fell on a Saturday in the months of February and August and Episode 5.02 is set in April 1924, meaning the episode is placed squarely in February. As well as this, Mrs Hughes says that the anniversary is on "Saturday week" meaning that a week has passed in the episode. A week before the 16th is the 9th.
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