Mr Bates has been tested time and time again since his arrival at Downton as Lord Crawley’s Boer war batman turned valet. He was imprisoned for the murder of his wife and exhoneranted befre finding himself in the frame for Mr Green’s suspicious death. He must stay strong for Anna as she has consistently for him.
Under-butler and scheming trouble-maker, Thomas has managed to manipulate his way out of numerous tricky situations and hold onto his position at Downton Abbey by the skin of his teeth. His sexuality has led to loneliness and his efforts to befriend the new footman Andy have come up against opposition despite it becoming apparent that Thomas has a softer side and is just keen to mentor the younger man. This series will see Thomas question where he really belongs.
Stalwart housekeeper Mrs Hughes is tough and unsentimental but also fair, decent and wise. She is well respected and a reliable confidant who the staff can turn to. After years of heart-warming friendship with Carson, the pair are now engaged much to everyone’s delight. However the path of happiness will not be without the odd pot hole as the head butler pushes her patience to its limit.
Invaluable Lady’s maid to Lady Mary and wife of Mr Bates, Anna has overcome a series of struggles and her battle is not over yet. On bail for her suspected involvement in her attacker Mr Green’s death, she is longing to start a family. Will she find the happiness she deserves?
The cook. Mrs Patmore is still firmly in charge of the kitchen and kitchen staff and religiously defends her rights and privileges, against all new comers – including electricity, to which she has had to concede defeat. She views any new gadget as an enemy, fearing its presence will eventually make redundant. She is shrewd and observant when it comes to the romantic desires of the younger members of staff, and is especially protective of Daisy.
Kitchen maid turned assistant cook and widow of William, Daisy like a daughter to her father-in-law Mr Mason and is also protected by Mrs Patmore who she is still at the beck and call of. Frustrated by her lack of formal education, she took to her books in the last series and is determined to look to a future beyond service. Her left-leaning politics could land her in hot water.
Life has been a struggle for former valet Molesley. Having lost his job after Matthew’s death he struggled to find any worthwhile employment, let alone regain his stature as a valet in a great house. Employed as footman he is constantly reminded of his previous higher status. He has found a real friend in Baxter and helped her through her troubles with Thomas. He is also supportive of Daisy’s education which leads him to think of how different his life could be.
Lady’s Maid to the Countess of Grantham, Baxter arrived at Downton with a terrible secret which haunted her. Having admitted her dark past to Cora, she kept her job and managed to put a stop to Thomas’s tormenting, She will rely heavily on Moseley at the same time proving to be a true friend to Thomas.