ITV has axed its drama series Jericho after just one series following disappointing ratings.
The drama, which was dubbed Britain’s first Western, starred former Call the Midwife star Jessica Raine as widow Annie who is left penniless after her husband’s death and decides to move to the Yorkshire town of Jericho in search of work.
However it failed to hit home in the ratings and was also said to be very costly to make. Producers had to build an entire shanty town set in the Yorkshire Dales for the drama which was inspired by the builders of the Ribblehead Viaduct in the 1870s.
An ITV spokeswoman told RadioTimes.com: “ITV regularly refreshes its drama portfolio and consequently Jericho isn’t returning to the channel.”
Created by Doctor Who and Sherlock writer Steve Thompson the eight-part series also starred Hans Matheson as Johnny who had recently returned to his native Yorkshire from Africa.
The Wire star Clarke Peters played Ralph, a foreman of the railway line under construction.
The drama opened with fewer than 3m viewers according to the overnights and steadily lost its audience as the run progressed.
ITV has just appointed a new director of programmes Kevin Lygo who is expected to initiate a revamp of the network’s programmes roster.
Yesterday, ITV confirmed an executive reshuffle, with BBC drama boss Polly Hill brought in to replace Steve November and new entertainment and factual appointments made.
Ben has worked as a professional journalist specialising in TV and the arts for nearly twenty years. After a two year stint on local newspapers in the mid 1990s, he spent more than 5 years as the broadcast reporter at the Stage newspaper. Following that he enjoyed staff reporting positions at the Sunday Mirror and the Sunday Times breaking stories and writing features before settling as a full time freelance writing for an array of newspapers and magazines - but mainly for the Guardian, Evening Standard, Broadcast, Independent and the New Statesman where he wrote a column.