Nottingham 1811. With low wages and long working hours for Nottingham's framework knitters, desperate men turn to direct action and machine breaking. And when a raid goes wrong and a man dies, someone has to pay the ultimate price. James Daniels, a friend of the condemned man, takes his son William to the public execution and from that day onwards young William develops a burning desire for justice and freedom. But when William befriends the headstrong daughter of a wealthy factory owner, little does he realise the dangers that lie ahead and the extent to which their contrasting backgrounds will affect himself, his family and their own futures.