Modern times arrive in Downton for Robert's surprise birthday party arranged by Lady Rose. Alfred can follow his dreams, leaving for the Ritz in London. Anna and Bates try to fix the cracks in their relationship. Lady Mary is not delighted with Mr. Napiers' Boss Charles Blake and does not approve of the government project in which they are going to study aristorcratic estates. Lady Edith struggles with Michael's mysterious absence and the ramifications of their last meeting.moreless
Thomas is scheming again. Alfred fails his first attempt to become a cook and Molesly missed his chance. Bates finds out about Anna's secret and confronts her. Meanwhile the Dowager Countess of Grantham worries about more mundane problems: Is the new gardener trustworthy?
The house party guests leave behind a traumatized Anna. Tom Branson struggles with the events of a night spent rather drunk. Michael Gregson pursues to court Edith, who finally gives in. Lady Mary has to make up her mind about an unexpected declaration of love.
Dame Nellie Melba sings at an extravagant house party at Downton Abbey. The Crawleys have a chance to reconnect with some old friends and acquaintances. Michael Gregson attempts to win Robert's approval and eventually does using a hidden talent. Downstairs Mrs Patmore begins to feel the pressure of the large party. Molesley is offered an employment below his previous station, but he can't refuse the opportunity. Attempting to liven up the party Rose brings back painful memories for Mary.moreless
Mary starts to let go of her grief and take in interest in the managing of the estate. Robert finds Matthew's last letter stating that he wished Mary to be his sole heiress. Turning to Tom Branson for help, Mary takes an interest in the estate, but faces resistance from her father. Bates comes up with a plan to help Molesley. Mr Carson is advised to let an old friendship wound heal.moreless
Set in February 1922, long after the funeral for Matthew. Isobel and Mary are still in mourning. Violet attempts to bring Mary out of mourning. Mr Carson tells her she's letting herself be defeated by Matthew's death. Mary is advised to take on a more active role in managing the estate with Tom as her counsellor. Robert and Violet disagree on what's best for Mary's grief.moreless