Gwilym Lee is to joining Midsomer Murders as the new sidekick to DCI John Barnaby (Neil Dudgeon).
The actor replaces Jason Hughes who played DS Jones in more than 50 episodes opposite both original series star John Nettles and successor Dudgeon.
Lee will play DS Charlie Nelson in the new five-part series which starts filming at the end of April for transmission on ITV later this year.
His past TV credits include The Hollow Crown, Land Girls and Channel 4’s Fresh Meat while his theatre credits include The Promise, Othello, Hamlet, Oedipus and Richard III for the National, RSC, the Crucible and the Donmar, and King Lear on Broadway.
“I am delighted to be joining such a popular and long running series as Midsomer Murders,” the actor said.
“I have always watched it and can’t wait to start work on it now, as a regular character. It’s a bit of a dream come true and I am even looking forward to the various stunts that lie ahead of me – I know Barnaby doesn’t like jumping into freezing lakes!”
Commenting on his new co-star Dudgeon said: ‘We’ve met and got on really well and I really look forward to working with him this year. It will be good to bring a new character into the series – and keep Barnaby on his toes!’.
Jo Wright, Executive Producer said: ‘We looked long and hard for the right person and feel that Gwilym can bring so much to the new series of MIDSOMER MURDERS. I know he is a great choice, and he will work so well alongside Neil Dudgeon’.
Louise Sutton, Producer added: ‘He is a delight to be with, enthusiastic and will be a great addition to the series. It will show a totally new dynamic to the partnership with Barnaby which I am sure the viewers will enjoy.’