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Call The Midwife star Stephen McGann takes break from filming for special reason

The Dr Turner actor took a break from filming the BBC drama

Stephen McGann as Dr Patrick Turner in Call the Midwife
Megan Bull
TV Writer
30 June 2023
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The cast and crew of Call The Midwife are currently in production for the show's 13th season, but one star was noticeably absent on Thursday. Taking to Instagram, the BBC drama's official Instagram account revealed that Stephen McGann had taken a break from filming, but there was a very special reason behind his absence. 

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To the relief of fans, the actor remained close by, but rather than filming as Dr Turner, the 60-year-old stepped into the role of tour guide instead. As it turned out, Stephen was tasked with taking the young stars of Project 21 on a guided tour of Nonnatus House, and it looks like they had an incredible time. 

Posting a photo from Stephen's day out with their guests, the Call The Midwife Instagram account explained: "Yesterday we had some very special guests with us on set. We were delighted to invite members of the Project 21 theatre group to tour our set, meet some of our team, and watch filming for Series 13!

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"But the tour had a special twist, as the tour guide turned out to be none other than our own Dr Turner, actor Stephen McGann!"

Stephen McGann in Call the Midwife© Emma Barrott
Stephen McGann as Dr Turner in Call the Midwife

The caption continued: "Project 21 is a charity that runs innovative activities, clubs and events for people with Down's Syndrome in the East of England. Stephen and producer Annie Tricklebank had met members of the team earlier in the year and invited them to come and visit. So yesterday Stephen was delighted to show all of these young performers around."

In a statement about the visit, Stephen said: "I had the BEST day with these young people! Their energy, fun and curiosity was utterly infectious – we all had such a great time together. I can't wait to see them all again. Also, the kids of Project 21 are officially the best in the world at group hugs!!"

Max Macmillan and Stephen McGann behind-the-scenes of Call the Midwife Christmas special© Instagram
Stephen McGann has been busy filming the Christmas special

Sparking a major reaction from fans, many were quick to comment on the heartwarming snaps. "As a mom of a son with Down Syndrome and a massive fan of the show…this is just awesome," replied one. 

"So lovely! Another reason to love your show! Thanks for all you do," added another. Meanwhile, a third penned: "Absolutely beautiful! This is so special and meaningful. This is my favourite show!"

WATCH: Call the Midwife teases emotional special episode with behind-the-scenes video

While Stephen took a brief break from filming Call The Midwife, it looks like he'll be back for this year's Christmas Special, plus season 13, which is expected to air in 2024. Filming for the new episodes commenced at the start of May, and ever since, the show has been sharing updates on Instagram. 

Most recently, Call The Midwife posted a behind-the-scenes video from the upcoming Christmas special, which is set to be an emotional one. It showed the three youngest Turner children, Angela, Teddy and May, playing in the snow.

The show's account teased that filming for the festive episode has been going "brilliantly" in the caption, adding that viewers may need "a tissue or two" when the special airs in December. We're counting down the days until Call The Midwife returns! 

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