Broadchurch season 3: Julie Hesmondhalgh joins cast for final series about sexual assault case

Olivia Colman and David Tennant will reprise their lead roles as detectives Miller and Hardy for a final time

Jess Denham
Tuesday 12 April 2016 10:49
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Julie Hesmondhalgh is among a host of names joining Broadchurch for its third and final series.

The former Coronation Street actor known playing Hayley Cropper will star alongside returning leads David Tennant and Olivia Colman in the next eight-part run of the ITV crime drama.

Other newcomers include Murdered By My Boyfriend Bafta winner Georgina Campbell, Charlie Higson, Mark Bazely and Sarah Parish. ITV has confirmed that all four actors will have “significant roles” in the upcoming series.

Jodie Whittaker and Andrew Buchan are reprising their roles as Beth and Mark Latimer, whose young son Danny was murdered in the first series, while Arthur Davill also returns as parish vicar Paul Coates. Adam Wilson will be back as Ellie’s son Tom and Carolyn Pickles returns as newspaper editor Maggie Radcliffe.

Plot details are being kept hushed as always but fans have been told to expect an entirely new case for DI Hardy and DS Miller revolving around a sexual assault.

“The series explores the consequences of a serious sexual assault as a Dorset community comes under the scrutiny of Hardy and Miller’s investigation,” ITV teased.

“Based on a year of research with Dorset-based organisations who specialise in dealing with victims of sexual assault, and police advisors who specialise in investigating crimes of sexual violence, Broadchurch’s final chapter looks at the emotional cost to all of those involved and the irreparable damage to friendships and relationships.”

Julie Hesmondhaigh is best known for playing Coronation Street’s Hayley Cropper (Getty Images)

Writer Chris Chibnall confirmed that Broadchurch would end after series three. “This is the final chapter,” he said. “We have one last story to tell, featuring both familiar faces and new characters. I hope it’s a compelling and emotional farewell to a world and show that means so much to me.”

Filming is scheduled to begin this summer in Bridport, West Bay and Clevedon, all of which have featured in the first two series of Broadchurch. The second series struggled to match the first, both in terms of ratings and reviews.

Broadchurch series three is yet to receive an air date but is expected to reach viewers sometime in 2017.

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