Lord Ravenhurst, a former British fencing champion, runs his seaside country estate with his devoted junior son, Taylor, who recruits a youth friend, landscape architect Vivian, daughter of loyal steward Desmond, to help with some modernization. She's disappointed to learn to invitation didn't come from his lordship's firstborn, Samuel, her former flame whom she expected to be in charge. In fact he became a London banker and got engaged to tycoon Archie 's daughter Annabel to pay for his gambling debts. The lord's wife Margaret dies unexpectedly, too short after telling Taylor Samuel was adopted but ignores so to change her will, as the estate is her father's heritage. Samuel returns only to claim 'his inheritance' and Vivian, who is starting to fall for Taylor's honest charm.
London lawyer Owen Lockhart inherited a distant uncle's grand but run-down Cornish coastal estate and moves in with the intent to sell it. Senior constable Maxwell Breckett's wife Adele, his late uncle's secretary, hopes to change Owen's mind by rallying local clients and hiring as cook foxy local agricultural engineer Holly Heston, fatherless boarding school pupil Toby's single mother. She's in love with constable Lucas Corbin, the only one into whom she confided a grim family secret, but he finds out about her fast-budding affair with Owen.
Irish coastal fish smoking house entrepreneur Robert O'Neill failed to marry his youth love Jane, who went to study in England and wed tycoon Edward Wilson. Robert's wife has terminal cancer and stages her own death, only to have a real fatal incident after telling first lover Conor O'Hara, meanwhile a priest, he's her daughter's biological father. Edward Wilson buys the town' castle as part of his many dirty dealings. Jane and Robert grow together again in opposition to Edward's local project.