Industry in Yorkshire is booming and the cities are expanding. But this growth comes at a price: a valley in Nidderdale is doomed to be dammed and flooded to quench the cities' thirst. Rachel Garnett is determined to fight for her lovely valley and their way of life.
Working against her is a young engineer, Roger Beckwith, who is planning a reservoir that will swamp the parish of Firby. Rachel works at Firby Hall, an Elizabethan mansion that will be demolished when the reservoir is built. Rachel must fight to save her home before destruction carried out in the name of progress threatens to destroy the land.