When is Silent Witness back on TV for series 24?

Fans will have to wait "a little while longer than usual" to see the BBC One crime drama – but it's on its way!

Silent Witness

It’s all change at the Lyell Centre, as Silent Witness prepares to return for series 24.

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The previous series finale ended on a very dramatic note, featuring the death of one major character and the departure of another (spoilers in the article below!).

Here’s everything we know about the upcoming series of Silent Witness.

When is Silent Witness back?

For the last eight years in a row, a new series of Silent Witness has debuted in early January, so we would have expected the next series to have a January 2021 release date.

However, you don’t need us to tell you that coronavirus has majorly disrupted the Entertainment industry and the TV schedules – so it remains to be seen when series 24 will hit our screens.

Executive producer Jo McClellan said: “Series 24 is going to be brilliant and, although fans will have to wait a little while longer than usual to see it, I promise them it is worth it!”

Silent Witness XXIII

That said, production is well underway. Filming began in early September 2020, with Emilia Fox writing on Instagram: “So happy to be back filming with the #usualsuspects and some new ones too…..!”

Executive Producer Lawrence Till confirmed that series 24 will consist of “five exciting and distinctive stories told across ten episodes”.

Silent Witness cast – who will return?

Emilia Fox will be back as Dr Nikki Alexander – the role she has played since 2004 – while David Caves will return as Jack Hodgson.

But after the dramatic events of the series 23 finale, two of the four main cast members have left the show: Richard Lintern (Lyell Centre boss Thomas Chamberlain) and Liz Carr (forensics expert Clarissa Mullery).

Thomas Chamberlain had a pretty definitive exit storyline, suffering a painful on-screen death from nerve agent poisoning. His final gesture was an act of tragic heroism and self-sacrifice as he worked out the agent’s chemical structure, providing the key to curing his seriously-ill colleague Jack.

Programme Name: Silent Witness XXIII - TX: n/a - Episode: Ep 9 (No. 9) - Picture Shows: Dr Thomas Chamberlain (RICHARD LINTERN) - (C) BBC - Photographer: Sally Mais

Clarissa Mullery has also departed the show, although thankfully not in a body bag. At the end of the previous series, Clarissa explained: “I just know, deep down – that it’s time for me to move on, to focus less on the dead and more on the living. On life.”

On her decision to leave the show, actress Liz Carr said: “Originally only employed for four episodes as Jack’s side kick, I am incredibly proud that I leave as a main character in one of the BBC’s landmark dramas. Silent Witness has given me such an amazing opportunity to develop as an actor but I know this is the right time to take a leap of faith, leaving what I know and seeing what other opportunities await.”

“Liz and Richard, in their individual and brilliant ways, brought so much to Silent Witness,” said executive producer Richard Stokes. “They have been much loved characters and will be missed by us all at The Lyell.”

Who has joined Silent Witness?

Jason Wong joins cast of Silent Witness on BBC One
BBC

Jason Wong has joined the cast of Silent Witness in the role of pathologist Adam Yuen. He’s previously been seen in The Gentleman, Chimerica, and Strangers – and the BBC has released a first-look image of him in the board room at the Lyell Centre alongside Emilia Fox (Dr Nikki Alexander).

On joining the show, Jason Wong said: “I am so excited to be joining Silent Witness, like everyone else I have been a huge fan of the show for years and to be becoming part of the family feels like a huge privilege. I can’t wait for audiences to see all we have in store for them in this new series.”

What will happen next in Silent Witness? 

According to the BBC, Dr Nikki Alexander (Emilia Fox) and Jack Hodgson (David Caves) are looking forward to the future at the start of series 24 – “However buried secrets and memories soon surface, and, when ghosts from the past emerge, the two are forced increasingly close to one another.”

The arrival of Adam Yuen (Jason Wong) “disturbs this new dynamic”. Described as “a confident, bright and keen pathologist who’s constantly striving to be the best,” he immediately rubs both Nikki and Jack up the wrong way.

Emilia Fox said: “It’s fantastic to be back filming Series 24 of Silent Witness with five terrific new storylines, our wonderful crew, great new casts for each story and to be welcoming the very lovely and talented Jason Wong to the Lyell team, who is an absolute joy to work with!”

Will there be another series of Silent Witness?

Not just one, but two! Following airing of the series 23 finale, the BBC confirmed that Silent Witness will return for a further two series: a 24th as well as a 25th Anniversary series.

Piers Wenger, Controller of BBC Drama, said: “Silent Witness entertains audiences from all generations and continues to be one of the UK’s most successful returning crime drama series. I’m thrilled it will continue to grip the nation in 2021, and can’t wait for viewers to see what is in store for its 25th anniversary in 2022.”

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Check out what else is on with our TV Guide, or take a look at our new TV shows 2020 page to find out what’s airing this autumn and beyond.