Hop on your bicycle and get peddling, those cheery, cardigan-wearing midwives from deepest, darkest Poplar are back.
A few months have passed since the end of the Christmas special. Chummy’s “young sir” has grown into an unbelievably cute “cheeky monkey”, Jenny is still smitten with dishy Alec and Shelagh is immersed in married life.
But things are changing for the former residents of Nonnatus House. Now that their home has been reduced to rubble, it’s time to find a new residence.
“In episode one we move into a whole new building,” reveals Jessica Raine, who plays midwife Jenny. “It does feel like a fresh new start for everyone in Nonnatus.”
“It’s a more modern environment,” Helen George, aka Trixie, told us. “This is sort of a bit more Mad Men-y, a bit more stark lines. Not sixties because we are still just 1959, but it’s getting modern.”
“The set design is quite similar, same colour palette, so it does sort of feel like an extension of the old building. It doesn’t feel completely different.”
But while the midwives are happy to finally have somewhere to call home, the demolition of the community hub has caused confusion in Poplar and they’re in desperate need of some publicity to get the pregnant Poplar-ites knocking on their shiny new front door.
“Someone suggests that the opening needs a member of the royal family to give it that weight and make it great for the community,” reveals Miranda Hart, who plays Chummy. “Chummy’s family is well connected and so she is able to write and invite Princess Margaret to come along.”
A royal visit sounds terribly exciting. And it might just be the perfect distraction for Chummy, who is struggling a little bit with the monotony of domestic bliss. Married life in the 50s was a long way away from the 9-5 – the thrill of the delivery room has been replaced with burnt pie-lids and the making of scatter cushions.
But bunting and brand new bedrooms aside, there are serious issues at the heart of this series three opener. The episode will see Jenny, Trixie and co welcome a new face to the ranks: Sister Winifred (played by Victoria Yeates), a country bumpkin with lots to learn about the poverty-striken district of Poplar. And while the move appears to have done Sister Monica Joan’s mental state little good, the midwives are faced with a perplexing medical condition which will no doubt cause you to get something in your eye…
Ellie is an entertainment, TV and film journalist writing news and (hopefully incredibly witty) comment for RadioTimes.com. She loves light-hearted dramas and glossy US series - and is more than a little bit obsessed with Downton Abbey. Foodie, sun-seeker and aspiring novelist in her own time. Likes the fact that her name rhymes with telly.