The Woolpack

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The Woolpack
The exterior of The Woolpack
TypePublic house
First appearance16 October 1972
AddressMain Street, Emmerdale

The Woolpack is a fictional public house on the popular ITV soap opera Emmerdale. Its sign is a wool bale, a popular symbol in sheep-rearing country. It has played host to many of the soap's storylines and is the focus of the programme.

It is the second oldest TV soap pub, opening its doors in October 1972 and being preceded by The Rovers Return Inn which opened in December 1960 and succeeded by Y Deri Arms, from the Welsh soap Pobol y Cwm which opened in October 1974.

History and storylines[edit]

In 1976, the original Woolpack was found to be suffering from subsidence. Another building was bought by landlords Amos Brearly and Henry Wilks and made its debut as The Woolpack later the same year. This was to cover Emmerdale Farm's move from Arncliffe to Esholt for location filming.

The first Woolpack was the Falcon Inn in Arncliffe. When the outdoor scenes were moved to Esholt in 1976 the Commercial Inn was chosen as the new Woolpack. The present Woolpack is on the purpose-built Emmerdale village set on the Harewood estate which is based on Esholt.

The 1993 plane crash saw the Woolpack wine bar demolished trapping many people inside and paralysing Chris Tate from the waist down. It was also involved in the storm of 2003 where the roof was struck by lightning which caused the chimney to fall through the roof causing a window to collapse and fall on Tricia Dingle, which eventually resulted in her death.

For the show's live episode (Emmerdale's 40th birthday) in October 2012 the bar area was recreated within the "shell" that resides on the backlot at Harewood House. Previously all interior scenes were shot solely back in Leeds. The Woolpack's cellar, the living quarters and Marlon's kitchen would all be inside the village's Bed and Breakfast at Harewood House based on the studio's set layout.[original research?]

Landlords and landladies[edit]

Over the years, the Woolpack has had several landlords and landladies, the current landlady is Chas Dingle (since 2011). And the newest Landlord is Marlon Dingle (Since 2021). The longest serving landlord is Amos Brearly, who served as landlord for 43 years (1948–1991), although only 19 of those years were onscreen. The longest serving Landlady is Diane Sugden, who served as Landlady for 17 years (1999–2016).

The Malt Shovel[edit]

For many years the Woolpack had a rival pub in the village called The Malt Shovel which was supposedly slightly downmarket compared to the Woolpack. Episodes in which the Malt Shovel have been mentioned include The Plane Crash and The Storm. The Malt Shovel was later redeveloped into an upmarket bar, Malt, to the chagrin of then Woolpack Landlady Val Pollard.

Current employees[edit]

Character Job role
Chas Dingle Co-owner/Landlady/Barmaid (50%)
Marlon Dingle Co-owner/Landlord/Bar manager/Kitchen supervisor (50%)
Matty Barton Barman
Victoria Barton Chef
Lydia Hart Cleaner


Above the Woolpack are living quarters. Pub landlady Chas Dingle lives with her husband Paddy Kirk and their daughter Eve Dingle, Paddy's father Bear Wolf, Charity’s partner Vanessa Woodfield and Charity's sons Noah Dingle and Moses Dingle as well as Vanessa’s son Johnny Woodfield.

Key events[edit]

  • 1973: Amos Brearly and Henry Wilks become Landlords of the Woolpack.
  • 1976: The Woolpack is found to be suffering from subsidence. New premises are found in the village.
  • 1978: Landlord Amos Brearly and Henry Wilks are held at gunpoint by armed robbers who steal the takings.
  • 1980: Seth Armstrong, who first appeared in 1978, switches from the Malt Shovel to the Woolpack, becoming a regular bar-proper and a thorn in Amos's side.
  • 1983: Amos takes up golf.
  • 1986: Two lady strippers are booked by Seth Armstrong, much to Amos' annoyance. They cause a riot amongst the customers and the pub ends up completely trashed.
  • 1989: Amos tries to enlist newcomer Frank Tate to appear in the annual village show.
  • 1991: Amos retires, ending an 18-year partnership, Henry later dies, Alan Turner becomes Landlord.
  • 1993: The wine bar is demolished by the plane crash, paralysing Chris Tate.
  • 1998: The pub is burnt down after Tricia Stokes accidentally sets it on fire with sparklers.
  • 1999: Diane and Bernice Blackstock become landladies.
  • 2000: Bernice marries Ashley on Christmas Day.
  • 2002: After her failed marriage to Ashley, Bernice Thomas sells her half to Louise Appleton and leaves Emmerdale.
  • 2004: The Woolpack roof falls through after it is struck by lightning, crushing Tricia Dingle who later dies in hospital. Diane marries Jack.
  • 2006: Louise sells her half to Diane's sister Val Lambert.
  • 2008: Val marries Eric.
  • 2009: Val sells her share of the pub to Diane, making Diane the sole landlady.
  • 2010: Diane considers selling the pub to Nicola King and her husband Jimmy; the pair change their minds soon afterwards.
  • 2011: Diane sells 50% of the pub to Chastity Dingle.
  • 2013: Diane plans to sell her 50% share of the pub to Chastity Dingle due to plans of emigration to Australia. But changes her mind and decides not to leave or sell.
  • 2013: During a powerful storm, Killer Cameron Murray takes Alicia Gallagher, Bernice Blackstock, Chas Dingle, Dan Spencer, David Metcalfe, Debbie Dingle, Diane Sugden, Nicola King, Priya Sharma, Ruby Haswell, Zak Dingle and baby Jack hostage. To add, he locks Marlon Dingle in the flooding cellar.
  • 2016: Diane sells her 50% share to Charity Dingle.
  • 2019: Vanessa Woodfield gets stabbed by Donny Cairns who was seen pouring petrol around the bins at the back of the Woolpack. He then sets fire to the bins and door. Vanessa is found by Charity Dingle, soon after Marlon Dingle and Sam Dingle are trying to control the fire but the back window of the pub explodes.
  • 2021: Charity Dingle Signs her share over to Marlon Dingle after being kicked out by Chas for sleeping with Al Chapman And for ruining Debbie Dingle’s chance of revenge.

See also[edit]