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ITV release first look snaps of their lavish new Jane Austen drama Sanditon

ROSE WILLIAMS as Charlotte Heywood in new Jane Austen drama Sanditon

Rose Williams stars as Jane Austen heroine Charlotte Heywood

ITV has released a string of first look pictures of their big new Jane Austen costume drama Sanditon.

Adapted by acclaimed screenwriter Andrew Davies from Jane Austen’s unfinished work, Sanditon tells the story of the joyously impulsive and unconventional Charlotte Heywood (Rose Williams) and her spiky relationship with the slightly wild Sidney Parker (Theo James).

Theo James as Sidney Parker in Sanditon

Theo James as the restless Sidney Parker, who's suffering from a broken heart

Billed as a “truly modern Austen heroine,” Charlotte excitedly arrives in Sanditon, where she’s exposed to the “intrigues and dalliances of a seaside town on the make”.

Rose Williams said “I am absolutely thrilled to be playing Charlotte Heywood. This role is such a blessing. She's a brilliant character- modern, headstrong, with heart and a voice.

"Andrew's scripts are so beautifully written and wonderfully full of powerful female characters. I can't wait to start filming soon with the wonderful cast and creative team on Sanditon”

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Anne Reid as Lady Denham in Sanditon

Anne Reid as Lady Denham, who delights in the power she has over the people of Sanditon

Other key cast include Last Tango in Halifax’s Anne Reid as the blunt and powerful Lady Denham and Death in Paradise star Kris Marshall as Tom Parker, a happily-married man who’s desperate to put Sanditon on the map.

Andrew Davies, creator and screenwriter said: “I’m very excited that we are bringing the world of Sanditon to the TV audience with such a brilliant ensemble cast, headed by star of the future Rose Williams as our heroine, independent and forthright Charlotte Heywood, together with Theo James (Divergent) as Sidney Parker, our Regency entrepreneur with an aura of danger.

"It’s been such fun to develop Jane Austen’s fragment into a series - now I’m eager to see our exceptional cast bring Sanditon to life.”

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Kris Marshall as Tom Parker in Sanditon

Kris Marshall as charming risk-taker Tom Parker

Jane Austen wrote Sanditon only months before her death in 1817. Austen sadly died before she could complete the novel.

ITV is yet to announce when Sanditon will be screened.