Emmerdale 50th Anniversary Special: How to watch, when is it on TV, what is ‘the storm’ and who dies?

The soap’s producers said fans of the iconic soap will be ‘gripped to the edge of their seats’ by tonight’s episode, featuring ‘some of the most epic stunts’

Emmerdale fans are in for a treat as the popular ITV soap prepares to air a dramatic hour-long episode to celebrate its 50th birthday. The special episode will air today on October 16 - exactly 50 years to the day since the soap first appeared on screens in 1972.

To mark the occasion, the show has unveiled an official cast photograph taken earlier this year outside the Woolpack pub in Yorkshire’s Emmerdale village. Jane Hudson, the soap’s executive producer said the special would be a ‘treat for all our loyal viewers’ who will be ‘gripped to the edge of their seats as the stories unfold’.

Emmerdale’s 50th anniversary special airs on ITV tonight - 50 years to the day it first hit the small screen on October 16 1972.

She added that the storylines will ‘have you in tears, make you laugh out loud and of course, amaze you with some of the most epic stunts you’ve ever seen.’ Here’s everything you need to know about the Emmerdale 50th anniversary special, including how to watch it.

What is ‘the storm’ and how will it affect the village of Emmerdale?

The description for Emmerdale’s 50th anniversary episode reads: “Emmerdale celebrates 50 years with this special episode. A storm brews on Kim and Will’s wedding day - Amelia is trapped and a search ensues.” One of the episode’s major stunts during ‘storm week’ will be a cow stampede which puts lives in danger. The village of Emmerdale is set to be badly damaged by the storm - and cliffhangers along with shocking deaths have been teased. The survivors of ‘the storm’ will be left to deal with the aftermath.

How to watch the Emmerdale 50th anniversary special episode and when is it on TV?

The Emmerdale 50th Anniversary special episode is set to air on ITV 1/ITV 1HD tonight (October 16) between 7pm and 8pm. The episode will also be available on the ITV Hub after its conclusion. Fans can enjoy two hours of Emmerdale action tonight, as a special documentary looking back on 50 years of the much-loved programme will air prior to the episode from 6pm. You are required to have a TV licence to watch ITV in the UK.

What is Emmerdale?

‘Emmerdale’, known as ‘Emmerdale Farm’ until 1989, is a UK soap opera set in Emmerdale, a fictional village in the Yorkshire Dales. Emmerdale was known as ‘Beckindale’ until 1994. The soap was created by Kevin Laffan and first broadcast on October 16, 1972. Interior scenes have been filmed at the Leeds Studios since then, with exterior scenes first filmed in Arncliffe in Littondale. Exterior scenes were later shot at Elshot, but are now shot at a purpose-built set on the Harewood estate. The programme is broadcast in every ITV region.

King Charles surprises Emmerdale cast and crew with birthday message at National Television Awards

As Emmerdale gets ready to celebrate its incredible 50th birthday, the cast and crew attending this week’s National Television Awards on October 13 were taken aback when presenter, Joel Dommett, introduced a very special surprise birthday greeting.

King Charles congratulates Emmerdale on 50 years in the business.

Recorded a little earlier this year by the then Prince of Wales, before his accession to the throne, the message congratulated the team on their half a century, as well as their work around sustainability both on and off screen and their ability to entertain as well as inform.

Reminiscing first about the show’s original name, Emmerdale Farm and about the Sugden family, the monarch moved on to talk about the importance of the show’s depiction of rural life, the value of the countryside, and the programme’s fans all over the world. The Prince added a final Happy Anniversary to all the cast and crew.