One of my very favourite Emmerdale Farm storylines of the 1980s began in 1980 itself with the return to the Beckindale fold of Jack Sugden (albeit played by a different actor - Clive Hornby took over from Andrew Burt).
Later in the year, Jack's ex-lover, Pat Merrick (Helen Weir), returned to the village with her teenage offspring, Jackie (Ian Sharrock) and Sandie (Jane Hutcheson). Retreating from her awful husband, Tom, Pat struggled to keep her kids on the right track, living in a grotty caravan and doing whatever work she could find.
But, of course, young Jackie was Jack Sugden's son - unknown to Jackie himself, and the romantic flame between Pat and Jack was soon re-ignited...
For me, this storyline marked something of a departure for the show, with an attempt at realistically portraying late 20th Century teenagers and establishing two of them as major characters.
The days of Pat struggling to get by in the caravan, with truculent Jackie and wise-beyond-her-years Sandie (or so it seemed at first!), are fond memories of mine. Realistic story telling, great acting.
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