ENTERTAINMENT

James Norton Goes Beyond Call Of Duty With 'Grantchester' Back Tattoo

James Norton and Robson Green have finished filming Series 3.

22/12/2016 13:11 GMT | Updated 22/12/2016 13:17 GMT

Some people celebrate the end of the working week with perhaps a drink at the local or, after a particularly arduous project, the pop of a champagne cork.

James Norton has gone one further, and marked the wrap of ‘Grantchester’ Series 3, with a pretty full-on back tattoo - a gesture not gone unnoticed by the show’s producer Emma Kingsman-Lloyd.

We’d already guessed that James, who’s had a busy year with a lead role in BBC drama ’War and Peace’ and his return to ‘Happy Valley’ as villain Tommy Lee Royce, as well as his continuing reverend duties in ITV’s ’Grantchester’, might have opted for the scrub-off option rather than the permanent version - something confirmed by Emma in response to one fan’s quick query as to whether it was permanent. Emma replied: “It’s not! Don’t worry!”

‘Grantchester’ fans can sit down to enjoy the Christmas special of the show on Christmas Eve, ahead of the third series next year, which finds James’ character Sidney Chambers in the heart of a dilemma, having to choose between his great love Amanda, and his religious vocation.

The finale of Series 2 found Amanda and Sidney professing their love for each other. Only one problem… Amanda (Morven Christie) has left her husband, but is pregnant with his child. New character Archdeacon Gabriel Atubo reminds Sidney that as clergyman he must put duty above his own needs and lead by example. Given the strength of his feelings for Amanda, is this something that Sidney can do?

Meanwhile, his police pal Geordie (Robson Green) remains happily married to Cathy (Kacey Ainsworth), but there continues to be a spark between him and feisty police secretary Margaret (Seline Hizli). 

Joining the two leads will be the regular cast members Tessa Peake-Jones as housekeeper Mrs Maguire, and Al Weaver as timid curate Leonard.

Peter Davison will also guest star in the series as Geoff Towler, the village solicitor, captain of the cricket team and a man who rules his family with a rod of iron.  

Leonard was left heartbroken in Series 2 when Daniel (Oliver Dimsdale) left him for another man, but in this series he appears to put this behind him and find romance with someone else. However, this being 1950s Cambridge, not everyone approves.

In addition, Mrs Maguire’s friendship with dashing Jack (Nick Brimble) develops, but can anyone ever replace her late husband Ronnie?

The series, set in the 1950s genteel village just outside Cambridge and based on ‘The Grantchester Mysteries’ books by James Runcie, is one of ITV’s most successful shows of the past two years. An average of 6.4million viewers each episode tuned in for the second series, approximately a 25% share of the audience.

‘Grantchester’ Christmas special will air on Christmas Eve on ITV at 9pm. 

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