BBC Call The Midwife in 1950s Period Drama

Further details of Call The Midwife, a major new drama series for BBC One in 2012, have been revealed.

Based on the best-selling memoirs of the late Jennifer Worth, Call The Midwife is a moving, intimate, funny and, above all, true to life look at the colourful stories of midwifery and families in East London in the 1950s. The trilogy of books have become a huge word of mouth phenomenon, selling close to a million copies.

Ben Stephenson, Controller, BBC Drama Commissioning says: “This superb cast of some of our best established and new actresses will bring to life the extraordinary true stories and friendships of midwifery and family in 1950s East End London. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the late Jennifer Worth for both her support and insight on Call The Midwife which I hope will serve as a fantastic tribute to both her life and work.”

Filming will begin shortly on location in London and will mix newcomers with an award-winning established acting ensemble and crew.

Newcomer Jessica Raine will play the role of the young Jenny, living with a community of nuns and nurses played by Spooks actress Jenny Agutter as Sister Julienne, Pam Ferris famous as Ma Larkin in the Darling Buds of May as Sister Evangelina, Miranda Hart as Chummy and Judy Parfitt as Sister Monica Joan. Helen George and Bryony Hannah will play Jenny’s fellow young nurses living with her in the convent.

Pippa Harris, Executive Producer, Neal Street Productions, says: “Call The Midwife is a fascinating portrayal of birth, life, death and a community on the brink of huge social change. Jennifer was an incredible woman and was as forthright and as opinionated when we were working together as she was when she wrote about her astonishing life. I think viewers will be gripped by her insight into a world that, whilst being only 50 years ago, is so drastically different from how we now live.”

The series has been commissioned by Danny Cohen, Controller BBC One, and Ben Stephenson, Controller BBC Drama. It was adapted with the blessing and guidance of Jennifer Worth, who worked closely with Neal Street Productions and screenwriter Heidi Thomas (Upstairs Downstairs, Cranford) up until she passed away earlier this month.