Call the Midwife Wiki
This article is about the television series. For information about the memoir by Jennifer Worth, visit Call the Midwife (book).
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Call the Midwife is a BBC period drama series about a group of nurse midwives working in the East End of London in the late 1950s and throughout the 1960s.


The plot follows newly qualified midwife Jenny Lee, as well as the work of midwives and the nuns of Nonnatus House, a nursing convent and part of an Anglican religious order, coping with the medical problems in the deprived Poplar district of London's desperately poor East End in the 1950s. The Sisters and midwives carry out many nursing duties across the community. However, with between 80 and 100 babies being born each month in Poplar alone, the primary work is to help bring safe childbirth to women in the area and to look after their countless newborns.


Call the Midwife began airing in 2012 and has annually had a new series punctuated by a Christmas Day Special. Series typically have 8 episodes, with Series 1 and Series 10 being exceptions for having 6 and 7 episodes respectively. Series 10 is also unique in that it is the only series to air outside of January-March, due to filming delays as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Series Premiere Finale Number of Episodes Associated Christmas Special
Series 13 07 January, 2024 24 February, 2024 7 Christmas Special 2024 (Not yet released)
Series 12 01 January, 2023 26 February, 2023 8 Christmas Special 2023
Series 11 02 January, 2022 20 February, 2022 8 Christmas Special 2022
Series 10 18 April, 2021 30 May, 2021 7 Christmas Special 2021
Series 9 05 January, 2020 23 February, 2020 8 Christmas Special 2020
Series 8 13 January, 2019 03 March, 2019 8 Christmas Special 2019
Series 7 21 January, 2018 11 March, 2018 8 Christmas Special 2018
Series 6 22 January, 2017 12 March, 2017 8 Christmas Special 2017
Series 5 17 January, 2016 06 March, 2016 8 Christmas Special 2016
Series 4 18 January, 2015 08 March, 2015 8 Christmas Special 2015
Series 3 19 January, 2014 09 March, 2014 8 Christmas Special 2014
Series 2 20 January, 2013 10 March, 2013 8 Christmas Special 2013
Series 1 15 January, 2012 19 February, 2012 6 Christmas Special 2012

Cast and Characters[]

Call the Midwife is based on the memoirs of Jennifer Worth, featuring narration – and an appearance in the 2014 Christmas Special – by Vanessa Redgrave as an older Jenny.


Character Actor Series Introduced
Sister Julienne portrayed by Jenny Agutter introduced Series 1
Sister Monica Joan portrayed by Judy Parfitt introduced Series 1
Sister Veronica portrayed by Rebecca Gethings introduced Series 12
Nurse Beatrix "Trixie" Franklin portrayed by Helen George introduced Series 1
Nurse Phyllis Crane portrayed by Linda Bassett introduced Series 4
Nurse Ann “Nancy” Corrigan portrayed by Megan Cusack introduced Series 10
Nurse Shelagh Turner (formerly Sister Bernadette) portrayed by Laura Main introduced Series 1
Dr. Patrick Turner portrayed by Stephen McGann introduced Series 1
Timothy Turner portrayed by Max Macmillan recurring, introduced Series 2
Frederick "Fred" Buckle portrayed by Cliff Parisi introduced Series 1
Councillor Violet Buckle (formerly Gee) portrayed by Annabelle Apsion introduced Series 4
Reginald "Reggie" Jackson portrayed by Daniel Laurie introduced Series 6
Miss Millicent Higgins portrayed by Georgie Glen introduced Series 8
Cyril Robinson portrayed by Zephyrn Taitte introduced Series 8
Matthew Aylward portrayed by Olly Rix introduced Series 10
Mother Mildred portrayed by Miriam Marygolyes recurring, introduced Series 8


Character Actor Series Introduced Series Left
Nurse Jennifer "Jenny" Lee portrayed by Jessica Raine introduced Series 1 left Series 3
Matron Camilla "Chummy" Noakes (née Fortescue-Cholmondeley-Browne portrayed by Miranda Hart introduced Series 1 left Series 4
Sister Evangelina portrayed by Pam Ferris introduced Series 1 left Series 5
Sister Mary Cynthia (née Cynthia Miller) portrayed by Bryony Hannah introduced Series 1 left Series 6
Nurse Patience "Patsy" Mount portrayed by Emerald Fennell introduced Series 2 as a guest, main cast Series 3 left Series 6
Sister Winifred portrayed by Victoria Yeates introduced Series 3 left Series 8
Nurse Barbara Hereward (née Gilbert) portrayed by Charlotte Ritchie introduced Series 4 left Series 7
Nurse Valerie Dyer portrayed by Jennifer Kirby introduced Series 6 left Series 9
Nurse Lucille Robinson (née Anderson) portrayed by Leonie Elliott introduced Series 7 left Series 12
Sister Hilda portrayed by Fenella Woolgar introduced Series 8 left Series 11
Sister Frances portrayed by Ella Bruccoleri introduced Series 8 left Series 12
Sergeant Peter Noakes portrayed by Ben Caplan introduced Series 1 left Series 6
Reverend Tom Hereward portrayed by Jack Ashton introduced Series 3 left Series 7
Nurse Delia Busby portrayed by Kate Lamb introduced Series 4 left Series 6
Auxiliary Nurse Jane Sutton portrayed by Dorothy Atkinson introduced Series 2 left Series 2


The series was created by Heidi Thomas, originally based on the memoirs of Jennifer Worth who worked with the Community of St. John the Divine, an Anglican religious order, at their convent in the East End in London. The order was founded as a nursing order in 1849. The show has extended beyond the memoirs to include new, historically sourced material. For the most part it depicts the day-to-day lives of the midwives and those in their local neighbourhood of Poplar, with certain historical events of the era having a direct or indirect effect on the characters and storylines.

Such events include: the continuing effects of the post-World War II baby boom, post-war immigration and the 1948 founding of the National Health Service in the first series and beyond; the introduction of gas and air as a form of pain relief and unexploded ordnance in the second series; the Child Migrants Programme and the threat of nuclear warfare (including emergency response guidelines issued by local Civil Defence Corps) in the fourth series; and the effects of thalidomide as well as the introduction of the contraceptive pill in the fifth series.

Call the Midwife achieved very high ratings in its first series, making it the most successful new drama series on BBC One since 2001. Since then, seven more series of eight episodes each have aired year-on-year, along with an annual Christmas special broadcast every Christmas Day since 2012. It is also broadcast in the United States on the PBS network, with the first series starting on 30 September 2012.

In December 2015, the Director-General of the BBC Tony Hall announced the show had been commissioned for a 2016 Christmas special and a sixth series of another eight episodes to be broadcast in early 2017, taking the characters and plot into 1962. In March 2019, the BBC announced it had commissioned two further series and Christmas specials, through to an eleventh series in 2022, moving the plot into the late sixties. In January 2022, it is announced that the show has already been re-commissioned for a season 12 (2023) and season 13 (2024). Both seasons will consist of 8 episodes (one-hour), plus a Christmas special

Critical reception for the show (in both the UK and the US) has been mostly positive, and the series has won numerous awards and nominations since its original broadcast. The show has also been praised for tackling a variety of topical subjects and contemporary social, cultural and economic issues, including local community, miscarriage and stillbirths, abortion and unwanted pregnancies, birth defects, poverty, illness and disease epidemics, prostitution, incest, religion and faith, racism and prejudice, alcoholism, disability, (then-illegal) homosexuality between men, lesbianism, female genital mutilation, and maternal, paternal, and romantic love.