See Candid Photos of the Downton Abbey Cast 

Lady Mary being silly? The Dowager Countess with her elbows on the table? Thomas taking selfies with friends? 

See Michelle Dockery, Maggie Smith, Robert James Collier, and all the actors and actresses of Downton Abbey behaving completely out of character, cutting loose, hamming it up, palling around, and generally loving their work and their castmates. 


If you love him more than anyone in the world then of course you should.
It’s not as simple as that.
Oh? It is for me. But then I’m not your ladyship.
Did you love Bates more than anyone else in the world?
I did. I do. I’ll never love again like I love him. Ever.
Well, there you are then. One day you’ll meet someone else and you’ll marry. Perhaps it’ll be second best but it doesn’t mean you can’t have a life.
I think it does for me. 

Where is Elsie Hughes now?

Arriving at Downton Abbey in 1895, Mrs Hughes’ (Phyllis Logan) first job was Head Housemaid, though she was later promoted to housekeeper. Despite going by the name Mrs Hughes, Elsie revealed that she had never been married before and chose to go by the title ‘Mrs’ as it was more fitting for a housekeeper.

In series one we see Mrs Hughes who, whilst strict, is kind-hearted and offers useful advice to other downstairs’ staff. When Mr. Bates arrives at Downton with an injured leg, Mrs Hughes takes care of him, telling him no one will think worse of him because of his handicap. An old friend, Joe Burns, arrives in town and takes Elsie for dinner and to the Fare, intent on asking for her hand in marriage a second time. Mrs Hughes soon comes to realise she is not the same girl from years’ past and refuses the proposal. By the end of series one Mrs Hughes is the first to become aware of Tom Branson’s interest in Lady Sybil, having seen them holding hands whilst in celebration of housemaid Gwen Dawson succeeding in getting a job as a secretary.

With the war in full swing during series two of Downton Abbey, Mrs Hughes finds herself busier than ever in overseeing Downton’s management and dealing with various crises such as Carson’s illness. Mrs Hughes finds Downton’s new maid Ethel in bed with patient Major Bryant, livid, she dismisses Ethel. When the girl returns she tells Mrs Hughes she is pregnant. Though she disapproves, Mrs Hughes tries her best to help Ethel by smuggling food and trying to give Bryant letters. When Cora finds out she invites Bryant’s parents to Downton. In the girl’s best interest, Elsie tries to sneak Ethel into the house to meet with Bryant’s parents though it goes terribly wrong. Ever strong, Mrs Hughes arranges for a second visit and stands up for Ethel during the meeting. When Ethel decides it is in her son’s best interest for him to stay with her, Mrs Hughes does not voice her opinion, but comforts Ethel.

Series three and Mrs Hughes is still helping Ethel and her son Charlie who have fallen on hard times. It is during this series that she finds a lump and fearing it may be cancerous, Mrs Hughes consults Dr Clarkson. Whilst distraught at the thought of her illness, Mrs Hughes only confides in Mrs Patmore. While awaiting results, she discovers Carson has figured out the cause of her stress and is irritated when he treats her like an invalid. Though she is touched when Cora tells her no matter what, she is always welcome and will have the help she deserves at Downton. Mrs Hughes is shown to have an open mind, being one of the few servants who accepts former chauffeur, Tom Branson, returning to Downton as husband to Lady Sybil.

Mrs Hughes isn’t the only one unhappy with Edna Braithwaite returning to Downton Abbey. Carson, knowing they cannot speak out, suggests they keep an eye on her, though Mrs Hughes believes Edna’s return is a disaster waiting to happen. Her fears are proven right when Edna tries to blackmail Tom into marrying her with lies she may be pregnant. Tom confides in Mrs Hughes and together they confront Edna with threats to ruin her should she not leave. When Edna does leave Downton, she remarks to Carson that they were mad to let her back into the house.

Charles Grigg returns this series, and with Carson refusing to talk to him, Mrs Hughes takes it upon herself to help the man. Mrs Hughes is also the first to become aware of Anna’s situation regarding Lord Gillingham’s valet and despite Anna swearing Mrs Hughes to secrecy, the housekeeper tries to help Anna mend her relationship with Bates, who believes he is at fault for Anna’s behaviour. When Robert announces he is leaving for America, Mrs Hughes persuades Mary to insist that Thomas must go instead of Bates as he should remain in England to be with Anna. During the Christmas special, Mrs Hughes is the one to discover the ticket in Bates’ coat and shows the ticket to Lady Mary, insisting that they have to keep it a secret and not ruin Bates. Mary destroys the tickets. During this episode the downstairs’ staff are rewarded with a day off and after some persuasion, Carson suggests a day at the beach. Whilst there, Mrs Hughes offers him her hand to steady him, and together they walk into the water.

An argument breaks out during series five with disagreements over where the war memorial should lie. After a disagreement with Mrs Hughes (who is on the side of building a stone edifice), Carson is quick to change his mind and agrees to the memorial stone. Inspired by Mrs Patmore investing in a property, Mr Carson asks Mrs Hughes if she would consider investing in a property with him. While Mrs Hughes doesn’t give a definite answer, it is clear she is interested in the proposal. Come Christmas 1924, Carson approaches Mrs Hughes with the news that he has bought a property in both their names and, after five seasons, forty-three episodes and 12 years on screen, Mr Charles Carson proposes to Mrs Elsie Hughes

Series six and with the proposal at the end of last series there is lots of talk about the wedding day, and whilst Carson wants something traditional, Mrs Hughes would rather have something informal. But how would Phyllis Logan like the series to end for her character? ‘One would hope that she and Mr Carson don’t decide that marriage was a disastrous idea… hopefully they would continue to thrive and keep their health together until they retire.’

-A Downton Abbey Fanfiction-

How to make a Barrow Smile
Chapter 1

Contents: Slight angst, mention of attempted suicide, platonic Parkbarrow,

[[At first this was just going to be an ending to the latest episode of Downton Abbey because, quite honestly, it was disgraceful. But as you can see i couldn’t help myself write more so now, more than likely, this will become a chartered Downton Abbey fic. Probably centred around platonic and romantic Parkbarrow. Apologies that this isn’t my best writing but I still quite like it. Enjoy!]]
{p.s, I’m cringing at and loving the title I chose for this so much xD }

Andy kicked the door down. A surge of strength released from his desperation to save Thomas. Phyllis was no stupid women so if she had pieced together that he was going to try and end his life then more than likely, it would be true.

There he was. Blood dripping into the bath, turning the once clear water into a deeper shade of red. His friends held back a choke as they rushed over to him. Noticing his chest gently rising and falling, Phyllis proceeded to rip her clothing and tying it around his wrist tight to hopefully slow down the bleeding and keep pressure on it.

With their collective strength they dragged him out of the bath. After a call had been made the Doctor had arrived. Not much could be done after the bleeding had stopped but to bring him to his room and to keep the wound clean until it would heal and scar.


Whilst the Crawley’s were dining, Phyllis and Andy stood around nervously. Minds racing with the thought of Thomas. When the two would pass each other they would share a glance, expressing how futile serving dinner felt right now. Phyllis seemed to be hiding her emotions better than Andy as whenever Carson looked at him his lip was quivering. In return he would raise an eyebrow, keeping up the family standards his utmost priority and an emotional outburst would ruin it all.

Eventually, dinner finished and the two walked away speedily. They decided that only one would go at a time, so as to not overwhelm him. Andy offered to go later at night because his room wasn’t too far from his own so Phyllis plated up some dinner for Thomas and left.
“Hello, Mr. Barrow. I’ve brought you dinner.” Her tone was soft and she placed the tray onto the bedside cabinet, sitting on the spare bed. Thomas seemed to mutter a small “Thank you.” Although he didn’t eat or didn’t reply to anything else she had said. Even so, she still absent-mindedly chit-chatted away in hopes she would distract him from the earlier events.
“Unfortunately I must go now. Goodbye, Mr. Barrow. I shall visit again tomorrow, if you’d like.”

Once again the two discussed poor Mr. Barrow and Andy nervously watched the clock until the servants went to bed. Until he could see Thomas. His gaze fixed on the rhythmic moving of the hands he reminisced of when he had not long arrived at the Abbey and Carson had told him to wind the clocks. Thomas had offered to help but he hadn’t accepted. Would they be closer if he had accepted his help? Would Thomas have become friends with him? Would it have changed the series of events that lead to his decision of suicide..?

Surprisingly, the thoughts wasted a lot of time and when he finally snapped out of his trance everyone was gone and drifting into slumber. Andy practically ran down the corridor to Thomas’ room. His thoughts had led him into panic and worry. He needed to see him, even if he was asleep.

Quietly, he opened his door and stepped in. Much to his shock, the under butler was still awake. A book open in his palms with candlelight faintly illuminating the pale pages and even paler face.
“Mr. Barrow..? Am I disturbing you?” Andy stepped closer to him when he didn’t reply.
“Are you alright, Mr. Barrow?” Once again, he did not reply so Andy crouched next to the bed.
“Will you not answer me?” The silence that ensued told him that that was a no.

So he did something that earlier he had debated would be regrettable if he did it. He wrapped his arms around Thomas, the emotion which he had hidden away throughout the day, dripping out of the dam he had built to trap his sadness. Thomas finally reacted, his face overtaken by pure shock that somebody was crying over him.
“D-don’t you /ever/ d-do that a-again Thomas Barrow, o-or I swear t-to God I’ll kill ya. You gave m-me such a fright. I-I-I…” His words were getting lost in his wild sobbing. “I though y-you were dead b-bastard.”

At first he was touched, but he remembered how he had been treat and how so,etching awful would always happen when he let someone into his life. He masked his expression and curtly replied,
“And why should you care, Mr. Parker, whether I live or die?” Andy wiped his eyes and frowned,
“Maybe because you are my friend Mr. Barrow. And why should I need a reason to care about you? Can I not care for the sake of caring?”
“No, not really, Mr. Parker. People don’t work that way. Especially when the care has been directed towards me. Now goodnight, Mr. Parker. You already know what I am and if Mr. Carson, or anybody else for that matter, saw you leave my room they would get suspicious.”
“Stop being such a stubborn mule. I’ll be back tomorrow night so don’t think I’ve let you off the hook just yet. I’m not giving up until you smile. A genuine smile. I can tell the difference, and a good night to you too.” With that Andy strode off. Frustrated but determined. He would make Thomas Barrow smile, and he would make him happy.


Phyllis Logan interviewed on BBC Hereford and Worcester 16 August 2016.

Hear Phyllis talk Present Laughter, Downton Abbey, and “Mossip” with “my Telly-Husband” “Big Jim”


The amazing Laura Carmichael, star of Downton Abbey, recently joined the team at A World at School in Lebanon to see exactly why urgent action for education in emergencies is needed NOW.

With over 200,000 Syrian refugees missing out on school, she found children getting farther away from their dreams. She signed the #UpForSchool petition to help change that. You can too! How? Go to and add your signature!

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