David Copperfield is a posthumous child. He was born in Blunderstone, Suffolk, three months after the death of his father, who also called David Copperfield. On the night of David's birth, his Great-Aunt Betsey Trotwood arrives at the Rookery - the Copperfield family home. David returns home for the holidays and and makes amends with Murdstone, who has fathered a baby boy with Clara.
Romance is in the air as David secretly gets engaged to his employer’s daughter, the beautiful but dizzy Dora Spenlow (Joanna Page) - despite Mr Spenlow’s (James Grout) outrage. Spenlow’s death soon after, however, gives David a chance to marry Dora, and he starts to write his stories and columns for newspapers. But what of the beautiful Agnes Wickfield (Amanda Ryan), his one constant friend?
David is now working in London as a clerk at Spenlow’s and living at Mrs Crupp’s (Dawn French) house. However, her fondness for "peppermint cordial" renders her incapable of fulfilling her promise to Aunt Betsey (Maggie Smith) to treat David as if he were her own son.
A chance meeting with his old schoolfriend, James Steerforth (Oliver Milburn), leads to David being invited to dinner with Steerforth’s mother (Cherie Lunghi). David also discovers from Agnes that her father’s clerk, the lurking and evil Uriah Heep (Nicholas Lyndhurst), is to become a partner in her father’s business - and the stage is set for a bitter battle.
Young David struggles to cope with family changes, factory life and school.
David is now a young man about town. Deeply in love with the beautiful but immature Dora, he sets out to woo her. But first he re-acquaints himself with some old friends.
Narrator (Old David Copperfield)
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