Helen George thought Call the Midwife would only last six episodes!

Trixie in pink nurse outfit Call the Midwife
(Image credit: BBC / Nealstreet Productions / Sophie Mutevelian)

Call the Midwife has now clocked up over 80 episodes including the new ones!

Call the Midwife star Helen George recalls thinking the hit show would only be for six episodes when it started almost a decade ago.

Now Call the Midwife, which is poised to celebrate its 10th anniversary, has become arguably the BBC’s most successful show of recent times.

But back when it all started Helen, who plays Trixie Franklin, says her and the rest of the cast imagined it as a "small show" that would run for just one series.

"The tenth anniversary is a really big deal for Call the Midwife. We started out thinking it would just be a small show, lasting for just six episodes. And here we are a decade later! So it means a lot that people are still watching it after ten years. Especially over lockdown, people have been going back to the first series and watching it all from the start, which is a lot of episodes! But it's really great that people are still wanting the show and still wanting us there."

MORE: Call the Midwife star Laura Main on why the show is ground-breaking

Call the Midwife 2021

Finally, they're back!

After a longer wait than normal due to the pandemic, Call the Midwife 2021 will finally arrive on Sunday on BBC1. And Helen adds soon she’d like to raise a glass to the show’s longevity.

"I'm sure there'll be a lot of champagne drinking at some point! But for the moment, I think the celebration is just that we managed to film it during the pandemic. We are all really chuffed that it's still going ahead ten years in and with so many Covid restrictions as well."

She continues: "I can't believe I've been with the show for ten years! It feels like just yesterday when we started it. It feels pretty amazing. Not many people get to do a show for ten years, particularly a really good drama with the viewing figures we're still getting. I'm very proud to be part of a show that is watched throughout the world, by so many different age groups as well. I feel really honoured to be part of it. It's been pretty special."

Call the Midwife returns on Sunday at 8pm on BBC1 (See our TV guide for full listings).

David Hollingsworth

David is the What To Watch Editor and has over 20 years of experience in television journalism. He is currently writing about the latest television and film news for What To Watch.

Before working for What To Watch, David spent many years on TV Times magazine, interviewing some of television's most famous stars including Hollywood actor Kiefer Sutherland, singer Lionel Richie and wildlife legend Sir David Attenborough. 

David started out as a writer on TV Times before becoming the title's deputy features editor and then features editor. During his time on TV Times, David also helped run the annual TV Times Awards. David is a huge Death in Paradise fan, although he's still failed to solve a case before the show's detective! He also loves James Bond and controversially thinks that Timothy Dalton was an excellent 007.

Other than watching and writing about telly, David loves playing cricket, going to the cinema, trying to improve his tennis and chasing about after his kids!