TV & Movies

Holby City cast ‘found out show was cancelled one hour before news broke’

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Hugh Quarshie has claimed the cast and crew of Holby City were told the hit BBC show was being axed just one hour before the public announcement was made.

The 54 year old played one of the medical drama's longest running characters, Ric Griffin, from 2001 until his departure last year.

The BBC confirmed on Wednesday that the show will be coming to an end after 23 years on air next March.

Actor Hugh has now told The Guardian: "My understanding is they only found out an hour before released to the press – so no one saw this coming."

He added to the publication that he was "taken aback" to hear the news, and that many of his former co-stars had been left "reeling" from the announcement.

Other stars that have spoken out on the news include Strictly Come Dancing champion Joe McFadden, who played Raf di Lucca, and Davood Ghadami, who recently left EastEnders to join the show.

Joe tweeted to his 73,900 Twitter followers: "Such sad news about the end of #HolbyCity – it kept so many people in work for so long. My thoughts are with friends in the cast and crew."

Meanwhile, Davood penned to his own 79,200 followers: "I've only had the privilege of being part of

@BBCHolbyCity for a couple of months but its already very clear that its a great big family not a workplace. It will be sorely missed. Lets go out with a bang."

An online petition to keep Holby City on air is already gaining momentum following the news that the soap will end.

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Within hours of the corporation's controversial decision being revealed, a user by the name of Mr Holby launched a "Don't scrap Holby City" petition page.

They wrote: "The BBC have announced that they are scrapping Holby City after 23 years.

"Holby City has millions of weekly viewers and has won hundreds of awards. It is also one of the most diverse dramas on the BBC – bringing stories of real people across society, from all backgrounds and experiences.

"The show has raised awareness about so many issues of value to the public – whether that's mental health, bereavement, exploring faith or sexuality.

"The pandemic has shown how highly the public value the NHS, and Holby City is an important representation of the work that the NHS does, and the issues the NHS and its staff and patients face.

"Sign this petition to urge the BBC not to scrap Holby City," they concluded.

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