Ashley goes AWOL on the big day! (VIDEO)

Not sure Laurel really wanted to dress as a scarlet woman on the day she’s due to renew her vows with her husband… Perhaps that’s why Ashley’s nowhere to be seen. Neither is Sandy. It turns out that Sandy has sprained his ankle and Ashley has to collect him from the police station. Leave him there! But Ashley can’t. He gets Sandy home, but now he’s running late. Still, Ashley doesn’t go to the church, he goes to Daniel’s grave.

Meanwhile, Marlon has called in sick at The Woolpack because he really does feel sick at the thought of making the food for Laurel and Ashley’s reception. Rhona and Paddy finally become suspicious (how many clues have they missed?!) and Marlon admits that his married woman is Laurel. When he hears that Ashley has failed to show up at the church Marlon sees it as a sign – and he goes in search of Laurel.

The police have been searching for Cain’s missing car and they find it. Uh-oh. Jai is worried and so is Nikhil. There’s only one thing for it: Christmas is cancelled.

*Second episode*

So there’s Laurel, waiting at the church for Ashley. And there’s Jude, the visiting vicar, who could take a sad situation and make it better – if only Ashley would arrive. And then, just as Laurel is about to call the whole thing off, Ashley turns up! He’s had a pep talk from Carl (possibly the village’s second biggest sinner after Cain, so Laurel should be worried!) and is ready to go ahead and commit himself to Laurel all over again. Marlon doesn’t know that, though. He still thinks Ashley is missing and is still on his way to the church to declare his undying love for Laurel!

While celebrations at the church hang in the balance, Nikhil has been persuaded by Gennie to put the Christmas party back on at the factory. But Jai is worried. He makes Gennie promise she’ll take care of Nikhil if he goes to prison and Charity’s love and support do little to make Jai feel less like a dead man walking…

If ever Amy needed a mother’s support it’s now and Val is doing her best. So she’s worried when Amy gets a Christmas card from her birth mother.