What’s going to happen in Downton Abbey series 6, according to the cast

Michelle Dockery, Hugh Bonneville, Laura Carmichael and more tease the dramas to come in Downton's final foray

With Downton Abbey coming to a close later this year, it’s fair to assume we’ve got some shocks and plot twists in store before Julian Fellowes give us the happy ever after we crave. 


To get a flavour of what to expect, we caught up with the cast of the period drama before it returns to our telly screens. And here’s what they had to say… 

Robert, Earl of Grantham – Hugh Bonneville

“The writing’s on the wall for Downton – if it doesn’t adapt it will die,” Bonneville told RadioTimes.com. “Baring in mind that Robert’s sole function in life is to hand on Downton in the best way possible, he realises that he’s really got to move with the times. He’s talking about downsizing, cutting staff and all that sort of thing… Whose neck is on the block? Tune in next week!” 

Anna Bates – Joanne Froggatt

Will Anna and Bates find happiness? “Anna and Bates carefree? Are we talking about the same show?” laughs Joanne Froggatt. “No. There’s some more ups and downs for Anna and Bates. It keeps going, we don’t get any let up. We can’t just let it all go smoothly…” 

Cora, Countess of Grantham – Elizabeth McGovern

“[Writer Julian Fellowes] has managed to give every character a chance to say goodbye to their fans. People will be able to have a moment with their favourite character and see a little bit about where they’re headed.” 

Thomas Barrow – Rob James Collier

“The service industry is disintegrating and people are losing jobs,” Rob James Collier tells us. “Thomas starts to get paranoid. He’s thinking, ‘Nobody likes me. If there are going to be cutbacks at Downton Abbey, it’s going to be me.’”

Lady Edith – Laura Carmichael

“Edith’s sort of managed to settle herself into a cover story with Marigold,” Carmichael tells us. “She’s definitely nervous of making that jump, but she has this magazine in London and also Mary’s now in charge of the house so it’s less fun for Edith! …Rose is married and Branson’s in America. It’s just Mary, Edith and their parents, so I think London’s looking a bit more appealing.” 

Lady Mary – Michelle Dockery

Lady Might might be “never short of a suitor or two”, but season six is not all about romance, says Michelle Dockery: “Mary is just trying to find happiness within herself – it’s not just about finding the right man. She goes through quite an interesting time in her life in this series. She just wants to be content, I think, and happy. She’s always just chasing the happy.” 

Mrs Hughes – Phyllis Logan 

Will Carson and Mrs Hughes make it down the aisle? Well, if they do, it’ll be a “twisty and turny” road to get there, reveals Phyllis Logan. “All I can say really is that the intention’s there. They do plan but you know there’s a little issue. Hopefully it might get resolved or maybe not. Who knows?!” 

Daisy Mason – Sophie McShera

“Daisy’s concentrating on her exams. She’s a career woman now! That’s her focus for the first part of the series. I’m really interested in her growth in terms of the way she’s had this eye opening experience, she’s finding her education and finding out what else exists in the world and what else she could be and what she could do. Obviously it would be lovely to see what happens in her love life because she has been really unlucky in love but the biggest journey is all that other stuff.”

Josoph Molesley – Kevin Doyle

“Moseley’s infused with a sense that everything has passed him by; romantically and professionally…. His relationship with Baxter has gone a bit quiet and what’s lacking for him at the moment is any sense of fulfilment,” says Doyle. “Having Daisy to look after and to be able to steer her gives him some sense of self-satisfaction. He gets really engaged in that.” 

Lady Rosamund Painswick – Samantha Bond

“Towards the end of the series we will get to see Lady Rosamund up from London spending more time with the family. And more than that I cannot say!”

Writer – Julian Fellowes

“We’ve got household items like hairdryers being introduced, but this time we’re more involved with our running characters,” writer Julian Fellowes reveals. “We do have the odd guest character popping in, but the important stories are all about our main characters.”


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