Call the Midwife set to make huge change for series 12 that will devastate fans

Call the Midwife is set to lose two major characters in the upcoming Christmas special - and fans will be devastated.

MORE: Call the Midwife star reveals major filming setback for series 12

Sister Hilda, played by Fenella Woolgar, and Sister Frances, played by Ella Bruccoleri, will both be leaving Poplar in the new episode, it has been confirmed by the BBC.

WATCH: Have you caught up with the series 12 finale yet? 

At the beginning of the instalment, Sister Hilda has already bid goodbye to Nonnatus House, having been called back to the Mother House in Chichester, the convent run by Mother Mildred.

Meanwhile, Sister Frances falls off her bike in the snow while heading to a birth emergency and is sent to recover at the Mother House. By the end of the episode, France's future at Nonnatus House is uncertain, but she does not return.

An insider told The Mirror that the Christmas special might not be the last fans will see of the two characters and that there is scope for the pair to return at some point.

Actress Jenny Agutter, who plays head nun Sister Julienne, agreed: "The door is always open."

MORE: Call the Midwife: here’s how fans can visit filming locations

MORE: Meet the Call the Midwife cast and their real-life children

HELLO! has reached out to the BBC for comment.

Megan Cusack and Ella Bruccoleri
Megan Cusack and Ella Bruccoleri

Sister Frances will fall off her bike in the Christmas special

The sad news comes just days after filming for the upcoming twelfth series wrapped. The show announced the news via its official Instagram account, sharing a snap of Stephen McGann and Laura Main with their on-screen children, Max Macmillan, April Rae Hoang, Alice Brown, and Ned Shaw.

The caption read: "It's a wrap! We've just completed our last scene for our twelfth season. And this year's traditional clapperboard shot belongs to...the Turners!!

Fenella Woolgar as Sister Hilda
Fenella Woolgar as Sister Hilda

Fenella Woolgar plays Sister Hilda in the drama

"We ended our season filming in the Turner house set, so our Turner children were rather keen to hold the iconic clapperboard for themselves!

"Next stop....the CHRISTMAS SPECIAL!!"

Fans took to the comments section to express their excitement for the new series, which will arrive next year. One person wrote: "I cannot wait! I absolutely love Call the Midwife!!!! Roll on Christmas," while another added: "This is the best news, can't wait. Please keep it rolling forever."

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