The Version Interview... James Norton on the Grantchester Christmas special

It's the week before Christmas 1954, and the forecast is for snow in the beautiful Cambridge village of Grantchester. For vicar Sidney Chambers (James Norton), this is the busiest time of the year and he is rushed off his feet with festive duties. Which is useful, as it means he doesn't have time to think about his beloved Amanda (Morven Christie), estranged from her husband and heavily pregnant, who has taken up residence nearby with her Aunt CeCe (Anna Chancellor). Sidney loves her – but whether she’s married or divorced, there is no way he can be with her. 

 

Meanwhile curate Leonard Finch (Al Weaver) is embarking on an ambitious production of the nativity with the local children, and Detective Inspector Geordie Keating (Robson Green) is grumpy at the festive spirit - all of which leaves Sidney happy to bury himself in his pastoral work.  

 

Which is when a weeping bride reports the disappearance of her husband-to-be, and Sidney and Geordie find themselves drawn into picking through the murky motives of a winter wedding. When the would-be groom turns up dead with the wedding rings lodged in his mouth, Geordie is horrified - it has all the hallmarks of an unsolved murder from nine years before. 

GrWhat can viewers expect from the Grantchester Christmas Special and what is Sidney's role?

now, carols, turkeys, some dodgy Christmas jumpers, more snow, a little heartbreak and a lot of Christmas cheer! Sidney's role is the same as ever: balancing his duties as a clergyman with the temptations and complications of life and love and the rest. All very conflicted as usual.

 

What was it like filming with a snow machine?

I loved it. It felt very odd to feel so festive when we filmed it in early October. The snow machine was definitely a hit. I want one for Christmas.

 

How will you be spending Christmas?

With my family in Yorkshire feeling full and festive.

 

What's your favourite Christmas memory?

I genuinely convinced myself I saw Father Christmas flying through the air one night. I was so overexcited. Don't ask me how old I was....

 

What's the best/worst Christmas present you have ever received?

Best: Brio train set when I was about 6. Worst: a washing up brush in my Christmas stocking last year..

 

What's the best /worst present you have ever given?

Best: weekend in Rome. Worst: electric toothbrush.

 

Gratchester - itv / itv hub this Christmas.