Brenda Blethyn – the esteemed actress who brought DCI Vera Stanhope to life in the popular series “Vera” – is set to bid farewell to the role after 14 series.

The announcements of her departure came with an emotive statement from Brenda as she concluded her stint of filming for the summer series. The actress began playing Vera’s character in 2011 and expressed her feelings about this significant conclusion, reports The Mirror.

Blethyn, 78, voiced: “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.”

Furthermore, she praised the team behind the show saying: “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.”

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Kate Bartlett, the Creative Director of the show, paid tribute to Brenda stating: “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.”

Earlier this year, with the 13th series of Vera gracing our screens and David Leon reprising his role as DS Joe Ashworth, Brenda disclosed that her return to the series was contingent on David’s comeback. The star divulged: “After we filmed The Rising Tide at the end of 2022 I didn’t want to do any more without Kenny Doughty, who had decided to leave.”

“But I said, ‘I’ll think about it if you can see if David Leon is available to return as Joe Ashworth,'” she continued. “And so they did and here I am. I was broken-hearted when David left after Series Four and equally overjoyed when I heard he was coming back as the relationship between Vera and Joe worked so well.”

She further highlighted their shared past by noting: “They have all of that early history together. I wouldn’t have continued if David had not agreed to come back. I just didn’t want to start another board game with somebody else when I know I’m not going to do many more. And who would want to do it anyway?”

Brenda Blethyn
David Leon as DI Joe Ashworth and Brenda Blethyn as DCI Vera Stanhope
(Image: ITV)

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