Gavin and Stacey is returning for final episode, says James Corden

James Corden and Ruth Jones with a script
James Corden shared the image of himself and Ruth Jones on Instagram on Friday morning. [James Corden and Ruth Jones]

James Corden has ended speculation about new Gavin and Stacey material by announcing a final episode of the show will air on Christmas Day.

Writing on Instagram, the former talk show host said: "It's official! We have finished writing the last ever episode of Gavin and Stacey".

He added: "See you on Christmas Day, BBC One. Love Ruth and James".

It confirms the episode has been written with co-creator Ruth Jones, who has shared an on-screen relationship with Corden in the show.

A report from Deadline in February said a new episode would involve most members of the original cast.

This includes Matthew Horne and Joanna Page as Essex boy Gavin and his Welsh partner Stacey.

Other cast members who look set to appear include Rob Brydon, who plays Stacey's uncle Bryn, and Alison Steadman and Larry Lamb, who play Gavin's parents Pamela and Mick.

The last time we saw these characters was back in 2019, during another Christmas special.

The episode, which was the first for nine years, ended on a cliff-hanger after Nessa (Ruth Jones) proposed to Smithy (James Corden).

Gavin and Stacey cast
The cast of the show, pictured around the time of the 2019 Christmas special [BBC]

Viewers will be hoping to find out what has happened between Nessa and Smithy, but also to see how their on-screen son, "Neil the Baby", Noel Edmond Smith, is doing.

The final episode of Gavin and Stacey could be a bittersweet moment for fans - the 2019 Christmas special was the most watched show in a decade, bringing in more than 17 million viewers.

Running for three series between 2007 and 2010, it started off as a small BBC Three sitcom but was soon shifted to BBC One.

Set in both Essex and Wales, it has become a cult classic, despite only winning a handful of awards at the time - two Bafta TV awards in 2008 and one National Television Award in 2010.

It also won a Must-See Moment Bafta in 2020, voted for by the public, for the moment when Nessa proposed.

The show also picked up an impact award at the National Television Awards in 2020 - showing its longevity in the comedy space.