THE writer behind the show that made the West Bay cliffs a global icon is hoping its final chapter will be a 'compelling and emotional farewell.'

Series three of Broadchurch is thought to be coming to our screens in January; as ever, the perfect antidote to the post-Christmas blues.

This series promises to be the best yet, with a star-studded line up including Sir Lenny Henry, Sarah Parish, Georgina Campbell and Julie Hesmondhalgh.

And, of course, show stalwarts David Tennant and Olivia Colman will be reprising their roles as detectives Alec Hardy and Ellie Miller.

This time around they are investigating a serious sexual assault; the research for which was carried out with the help of Dorset Police.

Also returning to the show are Jodie Whittaker and Andrew Buchan as Beth and Mark Latimer, Arthur Darvill as local Vicar Paul Coates, Carolyn Pickles as newspaper editor Maggie Radcliffe, Charlotte Beaumont as Mark and Beth’s daughter Chloe, and Adam Wilson as Ellie’s son Tom.

Talking to Digital Spy last week, actor Arthur Darvill, who will be reprising his role as Paul Coates, said series three is 'going to be brilliant' with 'really heavy' subject matter.

"I loved the second series of Broadchurch - I think it was really necessary to tell that part of the story - but I think this series has more of the feel of the first series," he said.

This series has once again been written by Dorset's Chris Chibnall, who uses the backdrop of the Jurassic Coast to tell the story– and in doing so has made the area famous with fans across the world.

But Chibnall will be journeying far away from Dorset and in to another galaxy for his next role– Chibnall will take over the reigns of Doctor Who after Steven Moffat leaves at the end of series 10.

Of Broadchurch, Chris said: "This is the final chapter of Broadchurch. I hope it's a compelling and emotional farewell to a world and show that means so much to me."

An ITV spokesman said: “Based on a year of research with Dorset-based organisations who specialise in dealing with victims of sexual assault, and police advisors who specialise in investigating crimes of sexual violence, Broadchurch’s final chapter looks at the emotional cost to all of those involved and the irreparable damage to friendships and relationships.”