Colin Morgan to star in new BBC1 supernatural drama The Living and the Dead

The Merlin and Humans actor will star alongside Glue's Charlotte Spencer in the new six-part series set in Victorian England

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Colin Morgan is leaving the near future of Humans and stepping back into Victorian England for his role in new supernatural series The Living and The Dead.

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The Humans and Merlin actor will star in the new six-part BBC1 drama set in Victorian rural England. The series follows farmer Nathan Appleby (Morgan) and his wife Charlotte (Line of Duty and Glue actress Charlotte Spencer), who uncover a disturbing presence when they inherit the family farm in Somerset.

“The Living And The Dead is one of those scripts that you read and are instantly compelled and engaged by,” said Morgan. “It’s intelligent, chilling and engrossing, it’s going to be very special and I can’t wait to start working on it with the wonderful creative team.”

The new series is created by writing team Ashley Pharoah and Matthew Graham, co-creators of Life On Mars and Ashes To Ashes. Alice Troughton (In The Flesh, Cucumber) will direct the drama.

“Colin Morgan and Charlotte Spencer are two of Britain’s most exciting and talented stars and I can’t think of anyone better to bring to life Nathan and Charlotte Appleby, the beautifully drawn couple at the heart of Ashley’s bold and brilliant new series for BBC1,” said Faith Penhale, head of BBC Wales drama production.

Set in 1894, just as the industrial revolution reaches into the heart of rural England, the series aims to explore the eerie undercurrent of country life on the cusp of change.

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Spencer, a Bafta Best Supporting Actress nominee for her role in E4 drama Glue, said, “It’s always been a dream of mine to appear in a period drama and they don’t come better than this – fantastic, original scripts and, in Charlotte Appleby, a superb character who’s strong, passionate and gutsy. Couple this with an incredible director, crew and cast, I can’t wait to get started!”

Read more: Sci-fi drama Humans booted up for second series

“Very very scary” period ghost story heading for BBC1