Top positive review
Downton the TV series concludes, but with enough life left in the old house to provide material for a film or films
28 December 2016
As 1926 arrived England was still in the early stages of transition from old society to more inclusive one where those in traditional service to the land owners can go on to become teachers.
The old estates have to be open to new forms of business and diversify to remain in existence. Mary aided by her new husband and Tom, provides a more a forward thinking outlook compared to her father, who while accepting modernisation still has roots based on the past. This indicates that Downton is not left requiring an imminent bale out by the National Trust. An example of new opportunities is demonstrated when the latter two form a new business as car dealers.
The household staff is trimmed down but largely as a result of the new opportunities taken up by staff.
Lady Edith all ready a magasine owner manages to advance further, but as an indication that the old society still survives this is is achieved via a more traditional route.
Mrs Crawley and Lord Merton make their own breakaway with a prompt in the form of a health scare.
Lady Grantham settles into her role as overseer of the modernisation of the local hospital.
As the new year arrives the Dowager Lady Grantham drinks to the future but rues not being able to choose the alternative of returning to the past.
What we don't know is how far into the future Downton will remain self sufficient, or what will become of it when World War II arrives.