Brenda Blethyn bidding farewell to Vera after 14 series

Brenda Blethyn is to bow out after the 14th series of Vera credit:Bang Showbiz
Brenda Blethyn is to bow out after the 14th series of Vera credit:Bang Showbiz

Brenda Blethyn is bowing out after one more series of 'Vera'.

DCI Vera Stanhope will hang up her infamous trench coat and hat and bid farewell to Northumberland and the North East with the 14th and final instalment of the hit ITV1 detective series - based on the books by Ann Cleeves - which begins filming this summer.

An emotional Brenda, who first starred in the role in 2011, said: “Working on Vera has been a joy from beginning to end and I’m sad to be saying Cheerio. But I am so proud of our achievements over the last fourteen years. I’ll be forever grateful to the wonderful Ann Cleeves who created Vera, and to Elaine Collins who saw fit to cast me in the role. The Producers, dream cast and crew have been fabulous and I’m going to miss them, but I won’t forget their huge talent, the camaraderie, laughter or kindness we shared nor the friendship of the people of the north east and our fans worldwide. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.”

Silverprint Pictures Creative Director Kate Bartlett commented: “It is the end of an era and has been an extraordinary journey over fourteen amazing series of Vera. So many wonderful and talented people have been involved in the making of Vera across all the series, but none of us would be here without two incredible women: firstly, the absolutely extraordinary talent of the inimitable Brenda Blethyn. She is brilliant as DCI Vera Stanhope, a truly iconic character of our times. And - of course - the amazing Ann Cleeves, author of the original novels and creator of DCI Vera Stanhope. We will all be very sad to say goodbye to Brenda and everyone involved in making the show.”

Drama Commissioner Huw Kennair Jones: added: “Led by the incomparable Brenda Blethyn, from the moment Vera arrived on our screens in 2011 audiences have been enthralled by her many adventures. And whilst we’re sad she’s hanging up her Mac, we’re hugely grateful for 14 brilliant series. Everyone at ITV would like to thank Brenda, Ann Cleeves, Silverprint Pictures and the amazing cast and crew that have made Vera such a continued success.”

Golden Globe and BAFTA winner Brenda, 78, recently admitted she often contemplates "retiring".

She was quoted by the Daily Star newspaper's HotTV column as saying: "I think about retiring nearly every day... when my feet are aching. We are not finished with it yet. It's a joy to work on. There are no egos in sight. Everyone is enthusiastic and very diligent and wants it to work well. There's nobody phoning it in."

All 13 series of Vera are available for streaming on ITVX.