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Call The Midwife - Filming begins on season 9 as Christmas special wraps

Call The Midwife

Story by Jack Foley

FILMING has begun on a new series of eight episodes of BBC Sunday night favourite Call The Midwife, which will air in early 2020.

In addition, filming has already been completed on a Christmas Special, to be broadcast this year (2019).

Created and written by Heidi Thomas, the upcoming series of Call The Midwife follows a triumphant eighth series which averaged nine million viewers per episode. The series explored many areas of medical and social history, including the impact of disability, adoption, abortion, cot death, Intersex representation, cervical smear tests and Sickle cell disease (which prompted a 46% increase of new blood donors registering).

This ninth series will uphold the show’s established reputation of compelling, sensitive and relevant storylines, with a tenth and eleventh series already commissioned, keeping the show on air until 2022.

This year’s Christmas special will see the team take their work to the Outer Hebrides. Led by Mother Mildred, they embark on a trip to the remote yet idyllic Scottish island, where residents have a desperate need for nurses and midwives.

Exposed to the elements, they operate in bleak conditions with limited access to water and electricity to help their patients, just in time to reconvene in Poplar for Christmas.

Opening with the funeral of Winston Churchill in January 1965, series nine then continues with Nonnatus House entering a bold and innovative era. As the tower blocks multiply, and a new East End rises from the ashes of the old, society becomes more prosperous, but more complex.

Our familiar team of medics and midwives face unexpected challenges as the population shifts, rules change, and old diseases come back to haunt them. Alongside the joy and optimism of birth, they must cope with cases including diphtheria, drug abuse, cancer, tuberculosis, and fistula.

Meanwhile, their own experiences are fuelled by love, loss, and doubt – and the very fabric of their lives is jeopardised when Nonnatus itself comes under threat of demolition.

Series nine cast includes; Miriam Margolyes (Mother Mildred), Jenny Agutter (Sister Julienne), Linda Bassett (Nurse Crane), Judy Parfitt (Sister Monica Joan), Fenella Woolgar (Sister Hilda), Ella Bruccoleri (Sister Frances), Helen George (Trixie), Laura Main (Shelagh Turner), Jennifer Kirby (Valerie), Leonie Elliott (Lucille), Stephen McGann (Dr Turner), Cliff Parisi (Fred), Annabelle Apsion (Violet), Georgie Glen (Miss Higgins), Max Macmillan (Timothy), Trevor Cooper (Sgt Woolf) and Daniel Laurie (Reggie).

Dame Pippa Harris, Executive Producer, commented: “After an exciting journey to the Outer Hebrides for this year’s Christmas Special, it’s wonderful to be back in Poplar watching the cast and crew craft another powerful series, based on Heidi Thomas’s magnificent scripts.

“As we move into the mid 1960s the Nonnatus team face challenging new medical and social changes, with their customary winning combination of steely determination, empathy and love.”

Heidi Thomas, Creator, Writer and Executive Producer, added: “After a magical Christmas experience in the Hebrides featuring wild seas, stormy skies and some very disobedient sheep, we return to the harsher reality of city life in 1965. Society is changing fast and in series nine we will see Nonnatus House shaken to its foundations.”

Mona Qureshi, Commissioning Editor at BBC, said: “Call The Midwife really is such a special show, which consistently rewards us with challenging and compassionate stories that relate to modern audiences in all their diversity of experience.

“We are thrilled to be filming once again with the beloved team of midwives and nuns from Nonnatus House. Our audiences are in for another treat with the Christmas special and new series.”