When Stella Simmons comes to the Devonshire village of Burracombe to start her teaching career, she is alone in the world. Orphaned as a child and brought up in a children's home, she was separated from her sister, Muriel, and has never been able to trace her. Stella is soon caught up in the life of the village, especially in the plans for celebrating the Festival of Britain.
With the help of artist Luke Ferris, she tries to find Muriel. But Luke has his own troubles - notably the relationship he once had with Val Tozer, daughter of a local farmer. Val, in turn, is concerned for her friend Hilary Napier, who has a difficult decision to make.