ITV has cancelled World War II drama Home Fires after two series, the broadcaster has confirmed.
A spokeswoman said: “We are incredibly proud of what Home Fires has achieved, but the ITV commissioning team continues to refresh the channel’s drama portfolio, hence the decision not to commission a further new series.”
The news has infuriated viewers who joined several of the actors on Twitter to express their disappointment.
Some have started a petition to appeal to ITV to change its mind and a campaign has been launched with the #SaveHomeFires hashtag.
The popular series, starring Downton Abbey’s Samantha Bond as Frances Barden and Cranford’s Francesca Annis as Joyce Cameron, rated solidly for ITV.
Although Sunday’s finale was up against BBC One’s broadcast of the Baftas, it still drew an average overnight rating of 4.4 million viewers.
But what is especially galling for fans is that series two ended on a cliffhanger: a Spitfire crashed onto the home of Dr Campbell (Ed Stoppard) and viewers had no indication as to who survived.
Meanwhile, Pat (Claire Rushbrook), a victim of domestic abuse, faced a big decision. But her story has no resolution.
Mount Pleasant’s Daniel Ryan, who played Bryn Brindsley, tweeted the news about the cancellation.
Fellow actor Mark Umbers, who appeared in the cast as Nick Lucas, thanked viewers for their support.
He also mentioned that at least half of the third series had been written.
Script editor Sophie Bicknell said “apparently 6m wonderful viewers not enough”.
Furious fans vented their anger on social media and left no one in any doubt about their feelings about the decision.