Charlotte Ritchie: 'It's cool being in a time my granddad would have known!'

(Image credit: BBC/Neal Street productions/Soph)

The nuns and midwives of Nonnatus House get a brush with TV stardom in the Call the Midwife Christmas special when the BBC decides to film a carol service in the local church.

Charlotte Ritchie (opens in new tab), who plays young midwife Barbara Gilbert in the BBC1 period drama, has told TV Times (opens in new tab) she was delighted to find that the storyline had echoes of her own family history.

"It is nice because my granddad, who I never met, used to be a producer for the BBC and for ITV, he even worked on the Queen’s Coronation, so it was really strange seeing all the old BBC cameras going around during filming because I have got pictures of him and the camera operators with them," said the actress, who will reprise her role as quirky Oregon in in the final series of Fresh Meat next year.

"It was so cool to be in a time that he would have known."

For Charlotte, the episode, which will lead up to the fifth series in the new year, is particularly special as it's her first Christmas special after joining during the last series.

"I can’t believe I’m in this one; I am so excited! There’s something magical about Christmas as Nonnatus House," said the 26-year-old. "But it was a relief I wasn’t in the Christmas special last year, because it was the final one I could enjoy watching without my big old face coming in and ruining it for myself!’


Caren has been a journalist specializing in TV for almost two decades and is a Senior Features Writer for TV Times, TV & Satellite Week and What’s On TV magazines and she also writes for What to Watch.

Over the years, she has spent many a day in a muddy field or an on-set catering bus chatting to numerous stars on location including the likes of Olivia Colman, David Tennant, Suranne Jones, Jamie Dornan, Dame Judi Dench and Sir Derek Jacobi as well as Hollywood actors such as Glenn Close and Kiefer Sutherland.

Caren will happily sit down and watch any kind of telly (well, maybe not sci-fi!), but she particularly loves period dramas like Call the Midwife, Downton Abbey and The Crown and she’s also a big fan of juicy crime thrillers from Line of Duty to Poirot.

In her spare time, Caren enjoys going to the cinema and theatre or curling up with a good book.