Filming has been suspended on EastEnders, Holby City, Casualty, Doctors, River City and Pobol y Cwm.
The BBC has taken the decision to suspend filming on its continuing dramas over the coronavirus pandemic.
EastEnders will have its output slashed by 50% with immediate effect – retaining its Monday 8pm and Tuesday 7.30pm slots – to ensure ‘the audience can continue to enjoy EastEnders in their homes for as long as possible.’
“In light of the spread of Covid-19, after much consideration, it has been decided that filming on EastEnders will be postponed until further notice. The decision was made after the latest government update. We will continue to follow the latest news and advice from the World Health Organisation and Public Health England. We have also taken the decision to reduce the amount of episodes we broadcast each week to two, so that we can ensure the audience can continue to enjoy EastEnders in their homes for as long as possible.” – BBC Spokesperson
It is not yet known whether the transmission patterns of Doctors and Pobol y Cwm will be altered; both shows like EastEnders air multiple times per week whilst Holby City, Casualty and River City air only one weekly instalment.
The BBC will issue further updates as the situation changes.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has stated that keeping social contact to a minimum will limit the spread of the virus and alleviate the pressure on the NHS.
The PM has urged brits to avoid gatherings and crowded places, such as pubs, clubs and theatres, to work from home where that is an option and to avoid “non-essential” travel.
The coronavirus pandemic has also seen filming on shows such as Line of Duty and Peaky Blinders grind to a halt, while live productions like Loose Women and Jeremy Vine have been forced to do without a studio audience.