When forced to leave school to become a parlourmaid to the Groves, the richest family in the Yorkshire mining town of Hope, Lily has little idea of how her life is about to change.
When war breaks out in 1914, Jonathon Grove, Lily’s employer’s dashing son, joins the newly formed Royal Flying Corps and while on leave, seduces Lily and leaves without knowing that she is pregnant. Neither her father nor the Groves want anything to do with her, but with the help of a friend, Lily’s able to travel to the Yorkshire Dales to stay with Annis Clayton.
Lily begins to help Annis in making creams and lotions and sees the potential for selling them to a wider market than the local farmers’ wives.
When they team up with Ian Steele, the local pharmacist, they establish a business that expands beyond Lily’s dreams.
Everything looks set for a happy ending when she and Ian admit their attraction to each other, but Jonathon’s return into Lily’s life complicates matters.