Renee Bailey and Natalie Quarry in Call the Midwife (BBC)

Everything We Know About ‘Call the Midwife’ Season 13

Call the Midwife is a British institution at this point. It’s run for twelve seasons and highlighted some of the most important issues in the field of healthcare … all with a smile and a nice slice of cake, of course. And now, season 13 is on its way. Let’s take a look at what we know so far.

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When will Call the Midwife season 13 release?

Though there is no official release date yet, Call the Midwife season 13 is expected to follow its usual release schedule, premiering on BBC One and BBC iPlayer in the U.K. in January 2024 after a Christmas special in December. In the U.S., Call the Midwife typically drops on PBS after the season has finished airing in the U.K., which would put its release date somewhere in the spring.

At least you won’t have to worry about a renewal for a while—the BBC has already ordered two additional seasons of the show.

Which cast members are returning for Call the Midwife season 13?

Call the Midwife has an ever-rotating cast, with the only remaining characters from the first season being Sister Julienne (Jenny Agutter), Sister Monica Joan (Judy Parfitt), Dr. Turner (Stephen McGann), Shelagh Turner (Laura Main), Fred Buckle (Cliff Parisi) and Trixie Aylward née Franklin (Helen George).

This season will also include appearances from Linda Bassett as Nurse Crane, Megan Cusack as Nancy Corrigan, Zephryn Taitte as Cyril Robinson, Annabelle Apsion as Violet Buckle, Daniel Laurie as Reggie Jackson, Georgie Glen as Miss Higgins, Rebecca Gethings as Sister Veronica, and Max Macmillan as Timothy Turner.

The younger kids of the Turner and Corrigan families will also be back—Alice Brown as Angela Turner, April Rae Hoang as May Tang, Edward Shaw as Teddy Turner, and Francesca Fullilove as Colette Corrigan. We’ll catch up with another child on this season of the show, too, Robert Dellow, as portrayed by the young Nate Court. He was part of a storyline about Down’s Syndrome in season 10, along with Daniel Laurie’s Reggie. The official Call the Midwife Facebook page announced in July 2023, “Nate is a much-loved member of our Call the Midwife family, so we were just thrilled when he was able to return for a brief cameo appearance in Series 13 as a toddler!”

Two new midwives will also be joining the show. These are Renee Bailey as Joyce Highland, and Natalie Quarry as Rosalind Clifford. The BBC has released an image (as shown above) and character descriptions of these two new characters:

“Joyce Highland hails from Trinidad, and aims to become Matron of a British hospital. Hardworking, fiercely bright, and deeply kind, she has a traumatic past that she cannot conceal forever.

Rosalind Clifford is young, warm, passionate and funny. She may seem naive at times, but has an inner steeliness that will lead her to make some life-changing decisions.”

Who isn’t returning for Call the Midwife season 13?

Unfortunately, Leonie Elliot’s Lucille, a beloved character among Call the Midwife fans, won’t be back for the upcoming season. She wrote on Instagram in February:

“Thank you all for embracing Lucille and rocking with me on this journey, it is with a heart full of love and appreciation that I embark on pastures new. Having spent 6 years on a truly wonderful show, with a fantastic team I have fallen deeper and deeper in love with Lucille. I feel honored to have represented the pioneering Windrush generation and their incredible impact on British society. I would like to say a MASSIVE thank you to the brilliant cast and our uber talented creative team: Heidi Thomas, Pippa Harris and Annie Tricklebank. Thank you again for all your support, it is hugely appreciated. Super exciting for what’s coming next!”

There are also rumors that Olly Rix, who plays Trixie’s new husband, Matthew Aylward, won’t be returning. The BBC had him listed as a returning cast member as of July 2023, but in September, there were reports that he’d been “axed” from the show. The source is The Sun, though, so take that with a pinch of salt.

What will Call the Midwife season 13 be about?

We can assume a lot of the season 13 plot will focus on the journeys of Joyce and Rosalind, but there are definitely other stories the writers might focus on, too. For example, how is Zephryn Taitte’s Cyril dealing with the departure of his wife, Lucille?

We also know that the season will be set in 1969, the year of the moon landings. Series creator and showrunner Heidi Thomas told the BBC in a statement:

“After Trixie’s spectacular wedding, the Nonnatus House community feels more tightly-knit than ever, but life in Poplar has never been a fairy tale. As 1969 unfolds we will see change and challenge rock the world of our beloved nuns, nurses, medics, and midwives. Newcomers Joyce and Rosalind arrive with much to learn, and much to give. And yet even as man prepares to walk on the moon, we see them grappling with life’s eternal questions. Who are we? What is love? And where do we belong?”

It sounds, as usual, wonderful. Bring on the cake.

(featured image: BBC)

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Sarah Barrett
Sarah Barrett (she/her) is a freelance writer with The Mary Sue who has been working in journalism since 2014. She loves to write about movies, even the bad ones. (Especially the bad ones.) The Raimi Spider-Man trilogy and the Star Wars prequels changed her life in many interesting ways. She lives in one of the very, very few good parts of England.