A release date has been confirmed for a new film adaptation of Ian McEwan novella On Chesil Beach, which is set on the Dorset coast.

The book, which appeared on the shortlist for the Man Booker Prize in 2007, tells the story of a newlywed couple - Florence and Edward - who find their relationship irrevocably altered whilst honeymooning in a Dorset hotel in the 1960s.

Irish actress Saoirse Ronan will take the lead role of Florence Ponting, a violinist who is the leader of an amateur string quarter.

She is paired with Billy Howle as Edward, grad student in history.

On Chesil Beach will mark Ronan's second appearance in a McEwan adaptation, following her supporting turn in Atonement at the age of 12, for which she was Oscar nominated.

Filming took taking place on Chesil beach near Chickerell, opposite the Bagwell Farm Touring Park, in autumn 2016.

The movie has also been shot in London and at Pinewood Studios.

The film is being directed by Dominic Cooke, a 51-year-old theatre veteran. This is his first film. It is produced by Elizabeth Karlsen and Stephen Woolley.

Dorset has proved a popular spot for television and film in recent years with Dunkirk, Two For Joy and Philip K Dick's Electric Dreams.

Howle also starred in Dunkirk, which was part filmed in Weymouth and released earlier this year.

On Chesil Beach received glowing reviews after it premiered on the opening day of the Toronto Film Festival.

Critics say that Ronan is ‘remarkable’ in this ‘entrancing adaptation’ of Ian McEwan’s novel.

Variety magazine has compared the film to David Lean’s 1945 Brief Encounter in its elevation of ‘two painfully civilized and polite British lovers into an image of the purest romantic ardour’.

Variety writes: “It also has a quality all its own, a vision of love that’s shockingly old-fashioned and tinglingly audacious. It should succeed in connecting with audiences eager to experience that all-too-rare thing: a romantic drama that gets so far into the mystique of its era that it takes you somewhere you’ve never been.”

Speaking about director Cooke, Variety says: “Working from McEwan’s screenplay, Cooke has fashioned the material into a visually captivating romantic puzzle that reverberates with hope and tenderness and wistful loss.”

The film will be released in the UK on Friday, January 19 2018.