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Contrary to popular belief Emmerdale Farm/Emmerdale was fast-paced and dramatic before 30 December 1993 when the airliner hit Emmerdale. Some viewers who only watched the show after the plane crash say the show was boring and "all about farming" and animals before that said crash and it was not watched m
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Joe Sugden and Tom Merrick almost come to blows, 1972.

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Joe Sugden is injured in a car crash with Henry Wilks, 1972.

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Jim Latimer kidnaps Sharon before raping and killing her, 1973.

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Trash falls from the mill window, 1973.

uch yet in 1978 viewing audiences peaked at 14 million and in the 1980s about 15 million viewers tuned in. I do agree the show did change a bit after the crash but was still popular and dramatic before. After the crash storyline of 1993, it just
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George Verney attacks Jack with a hunting crop after Jack blackens his name, 1973.

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A friend of Jack Sugden falls into a pit at a building site, 1973.

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Henry Wilks shoots a dog for worrying sheep, 1973.

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Ruth Merrick tries to kill herself, January 1974.

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The Woolpack chimney collapses during new fireplace fitting, 1974.

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Annie is devastated to hear tragic news of Sam and Sally and Beattie. in a train smash, 1976.

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The original Woolpack suffers subsidence and has to be vacated, 1976.

became more popular and dramatic events were played out more often over a certain period of time, thus increasing the pace of the show every so often. In 1982 Kevin Laffan, the shows creator said "Anything that happens in Emmerdale can happen and does happen to ordinary people". That is still true as of 2015.


Emmerdale
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Heather Bannerman's car crash, 1976.

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Steve Bannerman is ready to hit his wife Heather, 1976.

Farm was not "all" about sheepdipping, animals and Annie Sugden with her rolling pin at the farm, or baking bread, nor did it "only" show people sitting around drinking tea, smelling the roses and talking about how great life is. It was not an education on farming and animals but about the residents of that said farm and also featured the pub in the nearby village and occasionally the shop, doctors, mill and smithy. Some people seem to think that before the plane crash Emmerdale was all about sheepdipping and that "nothing" happened but if you watched pre-plane crash Emmerdale I am sure you would rethink your assumption as Emmerdale Farm was more fast paced than people think, and was not all about pigs and cows lol. Lots of long term viewers of the show who have watched it from the beginning or before the plane crash will probably know the show was quite action packed and was not like a TV edition of Farmers Weekly.
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Potholing disaster, 1977.

In 1973 alone there was an affair between Jack and the lady of the manor, and a rape, murder, suicide, fire and a girl got injured when Henry Wilks was building his new pig unit. 1974 saw Ruth Merrick try and top herself and Dryden Hogben almost had an affair with Diana Prescott, also Joe wed but he soon split from Christine and started seeing Kathy Gimbel, herself separated from her husband, whom her father disapproved of. Norah Norris became lazy at the shop that year, and during renovations at the Woolpack the chimney collapsed, showering the pub with dust. 1975 saw the war between the Sugdens and Gimbels and Henry Wilks run into financial difficulties. Then 1976 was another dramatic year which saw Matt Skilbeck's children killed along with their aunty in a road accident at a level crossing then followed by a pub move followed by a car crash at Emmerdale Farm. The same year also saw Martin Gimbel hold Rosemary Kendall hostage at Emmerdale Farm and Bella Ryland die of cancer, of which rumours spread that her husband was getting married to Bella's cousin once she was dead. And 1977 was a very dramatic year in Beckindale with a suicide, a live in lover scandal, a potholing disaster, 3 fires, Syd Harker's criminal antics and a storm. 1978 and 1979 saw their fair share of dramas such as a shooting, a skeleton discovery behind the Woolpack during works going on, a barn fire, a small fire at a chemical farm, Mr Hinton revealing his son was in prison for drug smuggling, Joe flooring Tom Hawker, a siege, a hostage at the Woolpack, a mine explosion and a rape, a motorbike accident and Phil Fletcher accidentally shooting himself when fighting with Joe and trying to blame Joe for the incident.


Also in 1979 Judy Westrop had a battle with alcoholism after an abortion. The 1980s saw many spectacular dramas such as a caravan fire, Pat Sugden's road accident, a murder, a hostage and numerous fights. 1980 saw Harry Moore dying and the vicar blaming himself for not seeing him as much. 1982 was a year which saw more emphasis on the younger characters and the show became a bit more
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Joe Sugden & Ruth Hepton encounter a mine explosion, 1978.

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Amos and Henry are held hostage in the cellar, 1978.

urbane. 1980 saw Jack Sugden angrily pushing a local reporter into a duck pond for spreading idle gossip about him also Tom Merrick nicking Xmas trees with his mate and Joe Sugden getting run over when trying to stop them in their van, 1981 saw a tractor accident, Tom Merrick hitting Pat, a barn fire which Tom tried to frame Jack for, and a burglary at Emmerdale Farm, and in 1982 Jackie Merrick had a vicious fight with Teddy Hooson on a quiet country lane where they battered each other and dived into the river during the fight. And Jackie Merrick got drunk at the vicarage and almost trashed it with his sister and mate Andy. And more pop music was being played in the background. Also in 1983 Sandie fell pregnant while an unmarried
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Steve Hawker, who with girlfriend Pip Coulter, embark on a siege at the Woolpack, 1978.

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Firemen tackle a barn fire started by Smarty Garrett and Poor Ocker. 1979.

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Cully attacks Poor as he suspects him of raping his daughter Wendy. 1979.

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Cully chases the real rapist through Beckindale. 1979.

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Whoomf!!! The rapist runs into the path of the oncoming motorbike, 1979.

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The rapist is run over and killed, 1979.

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Phil Fletcher shoots himself in the leg and blames Joe, 1979.

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Harry Moore dies and Rev Hinton feels he should have done more for him beforehand, 1980.

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Jack Sugden pushes a local reporter into a duck pond, 1980.

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Amos Brearly's aunty almost has a fatal car crash, 1980.

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Joe Sugden is run over, 1980.

teenager at almost 18. Jackie gave the father, his friend Andy Longthorn, a black eye when he found out the truth. Joe Sugden had an affair with a married woman, Barbara Peters, who was also the daughter of Rev Donald Hinton. And Jack Sugden found out someone tried to steal some of his Fresians and he camped out one night at the barn and when the thieves returned Jack brandished a shotgun at them which lead to a vicious fight between Jack and Barry, the ringleader, leaving Barry in hospital.


The 1980s also saw Turners dramatic antics at Home Farm which included him being unpleasent, using blackmail, gambling and womanising, and his sons love rat antics with Kathy Bates, Alan Turner's Home Farm days followed
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Tom Merrick is angry to find that he is not Jackie's father.

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Jack Sugden and Tom Merrick have a fight, 1982.

by Denis Rigg's nasty ways and the antics of Tom Merrick and Harry Mowlem. A fight between Matt and Jackie and Mowlem in January 1984, followed by Jack Sugden's steamy affair with Karen Moore, Harry Mowlam trying to run Dolly and Sam over in 1985, then Jackie Merrick being knocked off his motobike in 1985 followed by his mum Pat's dramatic road acident in 1986 where she swerved to avoid a flock of sheep, and her car rolled down a hill which left her dead, Matt and Harry's fight and car crash in 1986, strippers wrecking the Woolpack in 1986, a flood in the Woolpack cellar in 1986, Turner backing into Archies moped, Jack attacking a crazy driver just after Pat had died, Harry Mowlam's 1986 murder, and Jack suffered from delusions after Pat died and wandered aimlessly round the fields of Emmerdale having flashbacks. 1987 saw Jackie falling down a mineshaft, and him vandalising someones property over Kathy Bates, the threat of a nuclear dump that same year, Eric threatening Sandie with a poker, Paolo Rosetti chasing Pollard then accidentally shooting himself, the performers at a local pantomine escaping disaster when the scenery on stage catches fire, the Crossgill fire of 1988, a flood at Victoria Cottage in 1988, a post office raid, and Annie's addiction to tranquillisers in 1989. Also Jackie's shotgun accident. Then Denis Rigg was crushed by a bull that year. And David Hughes viciously beat up Pete Whiteley over his affair with Rachel Hughes, and suspecting he was cheating.


The early 1990s saw a tanker crash, a barn fire, Jock McDonald knocked unconscious by Kim Tate's horse, Frank Tate being revealed as a ladykiller which resulted in vandalism of his trucksAmos having a stroke and a few thefts involving Michael Feldmann. In 1991 Annie Sugden was attacked by a robber at Emmerdale, Chris Tate was attacked by both truck hijackers and Nick Bates for making unwanted sexual advances on his sister Kathy, Seth was shot at by poachers at Home Farm, and later that year Sarah was kidnapped by deranged Jim Latimer in revenge for Jack giving evidence against him in 1973 over the Sharon Crossthwaite murder. And Kim Tate had an affair with Neil Kincaid in 1992, the same year a child abuse scandal occurred in
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Caravan fire, 1982.

Beckindale. And at the 1992 Boxing Day Hunt, when Frank Tate found out about the affair, he gave Kincaid a good horsewhipping, and in public leaving Kincaid bleeding.
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Jackie and Teddy have a massive fight on a remote country lane, 1982.

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Jack beats up Andy after find he got his 17 year old sister pregnant, 1983.

And Zoe coming out as a lesbian in 1993, Eric's car crashing and bursting into flames on a country lane, and Eric trying to frame Michael for cheque fraud and theft of a Roman bracelet.


See, Beckindale was far from sleepy before that plane crash. If people think Emmerdale was sleepy and boring before the plane crash then they are seriously mistaken and the reality check is it was not all about animals and farming matters and biggest issues being whether Annie should get a new pinny or Seth wondering whether to use compost or turf for the new allotment. Since 1972 Emmerdale farm/Emmerdale has had hard hitting issues.


The photos on the right are screengrabs from eventful episodes of Emmerdale Farm/Emmerdale from 1972 to before the plane crash in December 1993, showing in black and white that the show had drama before the plane crash and was not all abou
Emmie jack sugden with gun 1983

Jack Sugden catches animal thieves in the act in 1983.

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The thief tries to gouge Jack Sugden's eyes out during the fight, 1983.

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Jack hits the thief over the head with a rock, 1983.

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Jackie Merrick's motorbike accident, 1985.

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Harry and Jackie scuffle. 1985.

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Home Farm suffers structural damage after Seth's bird scarer shoots a stray bullet, 1986.

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Harry Mowlam crashes his van, 1986.

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After the crash, a fight ensues between Matt and Harry, 1986...

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...Harry floors Matt..

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..Matt clobbers Harry..

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..Harry loses his balance.....

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..and Harry falls into the pond...

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Flood in the Woolpack cellar, 1986.

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Derek Warner holds Rev Hinton at gunpoint, 1986.

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Pat Sugden dies in a car crash, 1986.

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Jackie Merrick falls down a mine shaft, 1987.

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The nuclear waste disposal site in Beckindale causes graffiti to be sprayed on the Woolpack side wall, 1987.

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Eric Pollard threatens Sandie Merrick with a poker while drunk, 1987.

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Young Francesca Rossetti finds the gun with which..., 1987.

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...her father Paolo has accidently shot himself, 1987.

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At the village pantomine, the performers escape disaster as the scenery on stage catches fire, 1987.

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Jack Sugden is jailed for 7 days for contempt of court, 1987.

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Archie Brooks is working on the roof at Hotten Market when the roof collapses..., 1987.

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...Archie then falls over 20 feet..., 1987.

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...before landing on something soft, 1987.

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Jackie Merrick smashes up his van, 1987.

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Jock MacDonald crashes the Land Rover, 1988.

t farming and people smelling roses and talking about how great life is. Enjoy the grabs and prepare to be amazed, very amazed.
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Crossgill fire, 1988.

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Crossgill is rocked by an explosion, 1988.

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Post Office raid in which Nick tries to stop a thief, 1988.

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Alan Turner walks out on nasty Denis Rigg for trying to con Joe Sugden, 1988.

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Jackie accidentally shoots himself dead when fox hunting, 1989.

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David Hughes attacks Pete Whiteley, 1989.

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Joe Sugden & David Hughes come to blows, Christmas 1989.

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Lucy the dog is caught in a mink trap, 1990.

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Chris Tate attacks George Starkey in the office at Hotten Market, 1990.

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Jock McDonald is knocked unconscious by Kim Tate's horse, 1990.

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Home Farm barn fire, 1990.

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Frank & Kim look on as the fire rages, 1990.

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Zoe Tate horsewhips Jock McDonald for attacking a horse, 1990.

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Chemical tanker crash, 1990.

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Pete Whiteley is accidentally run over by Kate Hughes, 1990.

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Jock MacDonald sets fire to a barn at Home Farm, 1990.

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Joe tanks Jack in an argument, 1992.

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Nick Bates & Chris Tate come to blows, 1991.

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Annie catches a burglar in the act, 1991.

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The burglar attacks Annie, 1991.

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Chris Tate is grabbed by a truck hijacker, 1991. Whilst...

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...the other hijacker clobbers Chris on the head, 1991. and...

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...Chris is left for dead, 1991.

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Seth is threatened by a poacher at Home Farm, 1991.

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Seth is shot at by the poacher, 1991.

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Sarah is kidnapped by Jim Latimer, 1991.

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Workmen dig up the foundations for the Holiday Village chalets, when the JCB cuts an electrical cable, 1992.

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Which triggers an explosion, 1992.

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BANG!!!, 1992

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The other workmen are alerted to the incident, 1992.

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After finding out about wife Kim's affair with Rt Hon Neil Kincaid, Frank Tate decides to teach him a lesson he will never forget, 1993...

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..After dragging him off his horse, Frank then whops Neil....thwack, 1993.

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...and gives him a horsewhipping but is restrained by Nick, Chris and Alan, 1993.

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Nick Bates drags Pollard from his crashed car when..., 1993

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...the car explodes and..., 1993.

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...bursts into flames, 1993.


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After being frightened by the Windsors driving past fast, a horse almost kills Joe, 1993.

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