‘Finally!' Call The Midwife fans welcome show's first West Indian nurse
Call The Midwife viewers have welcomed the arrival of the show’s first West Indian nurse, saying it “was about time”.
The seventh series of the much-loved programme about midwives in the East End in the 1960s started on BBC One on Sunday night.
It brought the arrival of newcomer Lucille Anderson (Leonie Elliott), who the creators have previously said will give an insight into the experience of Caribbean nurses who joined the NHS workforce in the Sixties.
Viewers were thrilled to see Lucille join the other midwives at Nonnatus House.
One person said on Twitter: “So excited that #callthemidwife is back!!…and finally reflecting the contribution of black midwives to the health service with a main character.”
“LUCILLE IVE ONLY JUST MET YOU BUT I LOVE YOU ALREADY,” tweeted another viewer.
One viewer said: “I can already tell that ctm are going to deal with the topic of racism as delicately and as amazingly well as every other topic. this is a tough show and im proud.”
Another said: “#callthemidwife is just about to start and they are finally going to get a black midwife. #aboutbloodytime.”
“The first Black nurse in Nonnatus House, *and* a former librarian? I think it’s fair to say I love Sister Lucille Anderson,” tweeted another.
Elliott has said she hopes her new role shines a light on the “unsung heroes” who came to the UK to work for the NHS.
“I’m just focused on doing her justice, and those kinds of women that came over at that time,” said the actress.
“I feel like they’re unsung heroes really, so just to shine a light on them.
“And hopefully the audience take to her and love her.”
She has admitted it was tough shooting scenes where patients were hostile towards her character.
Elliott said: “It’s quite difficult, just because I suppose that would have been some of the ladies’ experience when they came to London.
“And just speaking to my family as well, and just listening to some of their stories.
“So it is upsetting, but I think that it’s true to life in that it’s telling part of her story. It’s not all of her story, but it definitely is part of her experience.”
The new series of Call The Midwife comes after the programme won the Christmas Day ratings battle for the second year in a row, with an audience of 9.6 million people tuning in.