In a decision that is both welcomed and highly unusual at the same time, the BBC and PBS have announced that the ladies of Nonnatus House will continue with new episodes (27 to be exact) of Call the Midwife continuing until at least the year 2020 with the series renewed for three more seasons.
As fans get ready for the forthcoming Christmas day one-off special in which the bicycle-riding, cardigan-wearing midwives of Poplar head to the Eastern Cape of South Africa to answer an SOS call from Hope Clinic, the collective BBC/PBS decision signals a rare series commitment to CTM‘s loyal fan base in today’s world of knee-jerk process of TV commissioning.
When the series returns in early 2017, Nonnatus House will be getting a new nun in the form of Dame Harriet Walter. The 65-year-old veteran actress is set to join the sixth series of the long-running period drama when it airs on BBC1 and PBS next year. She’ll play Sister Ursula, a character Walter describes as a “not very welcome addition” to the midwifery team. Dame Walter will join the cast after the departure of the much-loved character Sister Evangelina, played by Pam Ferris, who passed away at the end of season five.
Series 6 will be set in 1962, where the midwives will see “social revolution in the outside world… mirrored by change and challenge much closer to home. As they strive to help mothers and families cope with the demands of childbearing, disability, disease and social prejudice, our beloved medics must make choices – and fight battles – of their own.”
Call the Midwife, series 6, will premiere in January 2017 on BBC 1 and will begin Sunday, April 2 on PBS.