Laura Main’s character in Call the Midwife has arguably had the biggest transformation over the past three series. She’s gone from timid, habit-clad Sister Bernadette to a young working mum, via a forbidden flirtation with dishy Doctor Turner.
As filming continues on season four, RadioTimes.com sat down with her to find out what’s in store for the upcoming series…
What can we expect from your character in series four?
It’s really nice actually. We saw at the end of series three that there was happiness and that is continuing.
It became quite all-encompassing, this desire for a family. It wasn’t the happy start to married life they’d hoped for – and adding to that, Shelagh still had a bit of guilt about leaving behind a certain life. But we’re over that now. She’s got what she hoped for and she’s now happily integrated back into that world again. They’ve got a wonderful family unit – Timothy and baby Angela – so things are really very good for them.
Will it be all nappies and nightfeeds from now on?
I haven’t seen too much of that! But there will be. I’ve only had two scenes with the baby Angela, who is absolutely gorgeous.
What’s it like acting with a baby who is supposed to be yours?
It is different. I was definitely more keen to get on than the child! The first scene she was a little grumbly with her new mum and dad. Maybe we were just trying a bit too hard. She didn’t realise how important it was to us that we got on! But there’s plenty more time to get to know each other.
Series three saw Jenny Lee bid farewell to Nonnatus House. It must have been strange to get back on set without Jessica Raine…
I have seen her quite recently and I let her know I missed her! The first scene around the dining table was also one without a couple of other characters, so you get used to it. And really fantastic actresses have come on board.
We got to know Emerald [Fennell, who plays Patsy] and Victoria [Yeates, who plays Sister Winifred] last series and they very quickly just became like they’d always been there. It should be the same with the fabulous Linda Bassett and Charlotte Ritchie.
Vanessa Redgrave (whose voiceover opens and closes each episode) is making her first appearance too…
That’s really exciting. Mature Jennifer will be on screen for the very first time. I was really quite moved when I saw that on the page. It’s a new dimension and quite poignant really to see Jennifer Worth – you get to see Jenny Lee, but this is her as she was when she was writing her memoirs.
Are you worried about how the series will work without Jenny Lee?
I wonder if people will think there isn’t a fourth series because it felt so final in so many ways – so many stories were tied up. But Jennifer kept in touch with the nuns for the rest of her life, particularly Cynthia.
Before now, I couldn’t see how it would work, but I think the show has expanded so much and we’ve got to know all the characters and the world they inhabit so much better now over these three series that I think it’ll be more than fine.
Laura Main stars in The Mill, starting 20 July on Channel 4
Call the Midwife returns for a Christmas special and a fourth series later this year