Filming for the Call the Midwife Christmas special has been confirmed for next week as the long-running TV tradition makes a return this year.

Stephen McGann, who plays Dr Patrick Turner in the medical period drama, revealed the news in an interview during a recent set visit with the star joking that the sun would be out to mark the occasion.

He said: "We literally start next week with Christmas again."

He added during the Radio Times interview: "And I guarantee you, the sun will come out and we will bake while we’ve got five layers on!"

Call the Midwife Christmas special an 'incredible privilege'

The Call the Midwife actor explained that filming the annual Christmas special made the holiday season feel very different for him, though he added that it was "an incredible privilege" to have such a prime slot on the TV schedule.

"It's the weirdest feeling in the world to do all the things that everybody else does on Christmas Day, particularly Christmas dinner," he explained.

Stephen McGann added: "Of course, I’m married to Heidi [Thomas], so Heidi writes the series and she does everything every mum does on Christmas Day.

"And when everybody settles down to watch Call the Midwife, we sort of look at each other in the house and go, ‘Here we go again, we’ve got to go to work!’ So it's been a duty and a pleasure for so long, but… to actually be the Christmas special on Christmas Day, it's an incredible privilege and one we all take very, very seriously."

Explaining how the festive special is different to usual episodes, he said: "It has a different feel; it’s a different audience, people are staying home with their families and so it's a different vibe. It's also the thing that brings us into a new season. It has all those elements and over the years, we've all gotten used to that rhythm."

Call the Midwife was recently renewed for two more seasons back in February.