call the midwife

Top writers discuss their craft: “First drafts don’t have to be perfect, they just have to be written"

Reece Shearsmith, Jed Mercurio, Melvyn Bragg (Chair), Heidi Thomas and Steve Pemberton (Credit: Paul Hampartsoumian)

Melvyn Bragg was talking at a special live edition of The South Bank Show, featuring four of the UK’s leading TV writers – Jed Mercurio (writer and creator of hit police corruption thriller Line of Duty); Steve Pemberton and Reece Shearsmith (black comedy anthology Inside No. 9); and Heidi Thomas (period drama Call the Midwife) – discussing their craft.

BBC reveal three-series commission of Call the Midwife

The BBC has commissioned a further three series and three Christmas specials of the multi award-winning drama Call the Midwife.

The deal will take the show through to series nine and follow the nuns and midwives later into the 1960s. Each series will consist of eight hour long episodes.

Call the Midwife has been one of the most popular dramas on British television since it first arrived on screens in 2012, with an average of 10 million viewers per episode.

Why broadcasters need religious literacy

A wall painting of Moses and the Burning Bush (Credit: Dura Europos Synagogue)

"My generation grew up thinking that religion was completely marginal to British life, which, as for the rest of the world, has been proved more and more wrong,” historian Simon Schama famously said.

In this, if in little else, Schama and I have something in common. Born in the same year, I was also carried along on the wave of 1960s optimism, which assumed that everyone was basically good, life was getting better for all, and reason would triumph.

Call The Midwife begins filming sixth series

Call The Midwife (credit: Des Willie)

Since it premiered in 2012, Call The Midwife has consistently been amongst the BBC's highest rated and most-watched shows. 

Based on the memoirs of real London midwife Jennifer Worth during the late 1950s, series six of the TV drama enters the swinging Sixties.

Themes will include "the beacon of the pill, the shadow of the Kray twins, the lure of independence and the call to duty", according to writer and executive producer Heidi Thomas.

Your new favourite TV dramas of 2016

Beowulf, ITV



Churchill’s Secret - ITV

This one of TV film stars Harry Potter actor Michael Gambon as Winston Churchill. In 1953 Winston Churchill has the first of several strokes which was kept secret from the world. Told from the perspective of his young nurse, Churchill fights to recover, all the while holding tight to the reins of the nation, refusing to relinquish his Prime Ministership.



Bake Off rises to the top of 2015's most watched shows

Nadiya Hussain, Mary Berry, Bake Off, Paul Hollywood, Sue Perkins, Mel Giedroyc

Over half of the top 40 TV shows of 2015 aired on BBC One, according to research compiled by the Press Association from the Broadcasters’ Audience Research Board (Barb).

Despite an increase in viewers over the year, Channel 4 does not make the list, as BBC One fills 27 spots, and ITV takes the remaining 13 places. 

Strictly Come Dancing appeared 13 times in the list, making it the most consistently viewed show so far this year.