Still searching for a new home, Margaret receives an offer of marriage from Henry, which changes her plans significantly. While Margaret becomes more involved with the Wilcox family, Helen is deeply distraught to learn that Leonard Bast is now unemployed, impoverished and on the brink of starvation after he changed jobs on the Schlegels' advice.
After the death of Mrs. Wilcox, her family is thrown by her final request regarding Howards End. Meanwhile, when Leonard Bast's wife, Jacky, appears on their doorstep, the Schlegel sisters take up the cause of her husband.
In the premiere of this miniseries, spring of 1905 in England, Margaret Schlegel is at home with her Aunt Juley and her brother Tibby in the spring of 1905 in England when she receives a letter from her younger sister Helen, currently visiting the Wilcox family at their country home, Howards End. On hearing that Helen has fallen for the youngest Wilcox son, Paul, Aunt Juley is swiftly dispatched to Howards End.