Here’s the last-ever episode of Holby City

Tuesday:Holby City; (BBC One, 8pm)

This year is going to mark the end of a TV era in more ways than one.

Not only has Channel 5 announced it’s pulling the plug on Neighbours, but tonight is the last-ever episode of Holby City.

The Casualty spin-off hasn’t been around quite as long as the Australian soap, but it’s still been a staple of the BBC schedules since 1999.

Nicky McKendrick

And, like Neighbours, it has served as a training ground for some future stars. Michael Fassbender, Sheridan Smith, Nicholas Hoult, Jodie Comer and Oscar-winner Olivia Colman are among the then largely unknown actors who have cropped up in Holby over the years.

The show is also still popular with viewers, which made the announcement that it was being axed all the more shocking.

It seems the decision wasn’t down to ratings, but rather due to the changing nature of BBC dramas.

Speaking in 2021, a spokesperson said: “We sometimes have to make difficult decisions to make room for new opportunities and as part of the BBC’s commitment to make more programmes across the UK, we have taken the difficult decision to bring the show to a close in order to reshape the BBC’s drama slate to better reflect, represent and serve all parts of the country.

“We would like to take this opportunity to thank the amazing team at BBC Studios and all the cast and crew who have been involved in the show since 1999.”

They also promised that the show would go out on a high, and Guy Henry, who has been playing hospital boss Henrik Hanssen since 2010, has hinted that this episode will live up to that.

He told Digital Spy: “It’s primarily a return to the core values of the show, which were always aiming to show the core value of the NHS. It pays tribute to the proper people who work in that environment.

“I believe the overarching theme of the last episodes/months of it is a celebration of the NHS and it’s doing it very well, actually. My character has gone in a direction that I think is interesting and might even have a twinkle of happiness by the end of it…”

But will anyone else be heading for a happily ever after? What we do know is that the consequences of Jac’s (Rosie Marcel) surgery will be felt around Darwin and beyond, raising the possibility that life on the Wyvern Wing will never be the same again.

Meanwhile, Dom (David Ames) feels as if Josh (Trieve Blackwood-Cambridge) and Ange (Dawn Steele) have shut him out of their family crises, but the trio may have to put their differences to one side as they rally around a favourite patient.

Speaking of pulling together, Donna (Jaye Jacobs) and Hanssen are there to support Lexy (Jenny Howe) after she receives bad news, although her positive attitude might end up inspiring them.

All that, and some familiar faces may return to make sure one of the BBC’s biggest shows goes out in style…

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