HOME AND AWAY is a long-running Australian soap opera that currently airs on the Seven Network in Australia. The series began in 1988 and is one of the two more well known soaps on Australian TV, the other one being Neighbours.
Home and Away focuses on the lives of the citizens of the fictional beach community of Summer Bay. The original main setting was the Summer Bay Caravan Park, which was originally owned by Alf Stewart (Ray Meagher) who, along with his late second wife, Ailsa (Judy Nunn) became friends with the Fletcher family.
Tom Fletcher (Roger Oakley) and his wife, Pippa (Vanessa Dowling, Debra Lawrance) had several foster children, the most notable of which was their adopted daughter, Sally (Kate Ritchie, who began her role at age 8 and stayed on for twenty years). The Fletchers had moved to Summer Bay after Tom was considered redundant at his job and he and his family left Sydney.
Also comprising the Stewart family was Alf's daughter by his first wife Martha, Roo (Justine Clarke; Georgie Parker); his two sisters, Morag Bellingham (Cornelia Frances), a hard nosed magistrate who was a troublemaker, although she really did mean well and spinster Celia (Fiona Spence) and his half sister, Colleen Smart (Lyn Collingwood).
In the beginning, Sally had always talked about a person whom she called Milco. At first, it was thought that Milco was merely an imaginary friend, but some years later, it was revealed that Milco was in reality her twin brother, Miles Copeland (Josh Quong Tart). Miles and Sally bonded immediately, and Pippa then accepted him as her son.
Later on, Sally met and married the love of her life, Flynn Saunders (Martin Dingle-Wall; Joel McIlroy), who later passed away of cancer. She then gave birth to their daughter, Pippa Saunders, whom she named after her mother, Pippa. Later, Sally moved to Phuket, and later on, she was joined by Miles, whom began work as a teacher on his sister's recommendation.
Of all the cast members, only one original cast member is still seen regularly, Ray Meagher who plays Alf Stewart. He was present when the series began in 1988. Until she had left the show, Kate Ritchie (Sally) was the other original cast member still present in the series, that distinction now belongs to Lynne McGranger, who plays long-time family friend, Irene Roberts. Another legacy character was Marilyn Chambers (Emily Symons), a dizzy, sweet natured woman who has been in and out of the story from the early days. On occasion, Alf's sisters, Morag and Celia makes appearances as well. Although the only other Stewart, aside from Alf and his daughter Roo, is his half sister Colleen Smart.
Notable faces who had been a part of the cast at one time or another include Danni Minogue; Sheila Kennelly; Fiona Spence; Cornelia Frances; among many others.