James Parry enjoys running a Cornish inn, albeit in financial trouble. Marital happiness is disturbed when his wife Ellen regrets having given up her painting restoration career for the household after daughter Vanessa decides to go study in London. Ellen's cousin Bridget Sanderford offers Vanessa the use of her London home, leaving after her partnership broke down to return to her parental home in the same Cornish town. Bridget rekindles romantic ties with James, he chose Ellen over her due to pregnancy. Ellen and her first new client, local aristocrat Sir Peter Salvage, also head for an affair.
Ellen and James' quiet and harmonious life starts to go off when Bridget, successful writer and cousin of Ellen, arrives from London in order to have fun and take James away from Ellen... When Vanessa, Ellen and James' daughter, starts talking about living in London, Bridget suggests she lives in her house. Ellen, who has never got on very well with her exuberant cousin, has no choice but to let Vanessa leave the house.
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