ENTERTAINMENT
03/05/2018 18:39 BST | Updated 03/05/2018 18:39 BST

'Call The Midwife' Season 8: Cast Reveal What It's Like Working With Miriam Margolyes

Producer Pippa Harris also revealed what fans can expect from Trixie's return.

Members of the ‘Call The Midwife’ cast have teased what fans can expect from Miriam Margolyes, who will appear as a guest star in this year’s Christmas special and the opening episode of series eight. 

The TV legend will be playing Sister Mildred, who arrives at Nonnatus House with four Chinese orphans, having fled the country. 

David M. Benett via Getty Images
Yup - Miriam is playing a nun

Speaking at the launch of the ‘Call The Midwife’ tour at Chatham’s Historic Dockyard, Stephen McGann (who plays Dr. Turner), told HuffPost UK and other reporters: “Her character is wonderful, big, noticeable. She’s not a shrinking violet. But full of complexity.

“Miriam is absolutely hilarious. Just imagine, for a second, what it’s like to have Miriam as a nun, in full throttle on the set of ‘Call The Midwife’. We have had a scream.”

“But she can be serious too!” added Jenny Agutter. Quite frankly, we cannot wait. 

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Stephen McGann 

The Christmas Special will see the return of Nurse Trixie Franklin, who was last seen leaving to spend time with family in Italy after struggling to cope with alcohol addiction.

The show’s executive producer, Dame Pippa Harris, said: “She’s [Trixie] well recuperated after her time in Portofino and she’s looking more elegant than ever. Expect a new wardrobe, there’s some Parisian couture in there. She’s in fine form.” 

“She has a wonderful hairstyle, I find it so fetching,” Stephen added. “Those ’60s styles are kicking in now.”

‘Call The Midwife’ is now in its eighth series, but its popularity is showing no signs of waning.

With the next series beginning in Spring 1964, Pippa also answered the question of whether she even considers how long it could go on for. 

Neal Street Productions
The first photo from season 8 was released on Thursday (3 May)

“Unlike other shows, we move one year at a time so the show is just as far away from today as it’s ever been. So it always feels quite distant,” she explained. “We haven’t galloped ahead in time.

“What Heidi [Thomas, writer] has discovered is that there are all these medical advances and social changes coming through. You think, ‘oh that’s fascinating, we’ll be able to look at that’. Inoculations, or the legalisation of abortion is coming down the track, lots of things that you could see would make fantastic stories.

“But it depends whether the public still wants the show, whether the BBC still wants the show, whether the cast still want to make the show, so who knows.”

BBC Pictures
Trixie's absence was written in when Helen George went on maternity leave 

A deal signed in 2016 means ‘Call The Midwife’ will stay on our screens until at least 2020. 

Miriam isn’t the only fresh face appearing in the upcoming episodes, as Fenella Woolgar (‘War & Peace’) will play Sister Hilda, while Ella Bruccoleri (‘The Last Kingdom’) and Georgie Glen (‘Waterloo Road’) will play as Sister Frances and receptionist Miss Higgins, respectively. 

There are also a number of season eight guest roles that are yet to be cast.