When is Happy Valley rumoured to be coming back, where is it set and how can you watch it?

Here's all you need to know ahead of Happy Valley season 3. 

Sarah Lancashire as Catherine Cawood on Happy Valley
(Image credit: BBC)

Filming has wrapped on the third and final season of Sally Wainwright’s smash hit, multi-BAFTA award-winning BBC drama Happy Valley and new images have revealed much more about the much-anticipated final instalment.

Sarah Lancashire returns to her iconic role of Sergeant Catherine Cawood for six new episodes, long discussed by both Sally Wainwright and lead actress Sarah as the final chapter of the Happy Valley story.

The news of Happy Valley's return comes as BBC drama Rules of the Game (opens in new tab) had viewers hooked, while new ITV police drama Trigger Point (opens in new tab), starring Line of Duty's Vicky McClure, is set to spark the same reaction.

Happy Valley last aired on BBC One back in 2016 and reached an audience of 9.3 million. And it was so good that both series one and two won the BAFTA Television Awards for both Drama Series and Writing: Drama for Sally Wainwright, with Sarah Lancashire winning the BAFTA Television Award for Leading Actress for series two.

So fans will be delighted that filming is complete after almost a six-year break...

When is Happy Valley rumoured to be coming back?

Happy Valley series three will premiere on BBC One and BBC iPlayer but it is not yet known when Happy Valley series 3 will be aired but it's expected to be out later this year or early 2023. But as with the previous seasons, it's had a two-year gap between series one and two so you could say that it's more likely to air later than sooner.

Happy Valley creator and writer Sally Wainwright said, “I'm delighted to find myself back in the world of Catherine Cawood and her family and colleagues for the final installment of the Happy Valley trilogy. It’s been wonderful to see the lasting impact this series has had on audiences all over the world. I’m thrilled that Sarah, James, and Siobhan are back on board for what I hope will be the best season yet, and thrilled once again to be working with the wonderful team at Lookout Point, the BBC, and our new colleagues at AMC.”

The BBC made the announcement ahead of its production and fans cannot wait.

One fan wrote, 'Goosebumps at the sheer thought of how incredible this will be. #HappyValley'

Another fan put, 'Brilliant can’t wait.'

And a third fan added, 'My favourite show'.

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Where is Happy Valley set?

Happy Valley is set in set in the Calder Valley, West Yorkshire. It covers the towns of Todmorden, Hebden Bridge, Mytholmroyd, Luddendenfoot, and Sowerby Bridge, as well as a number of smaller settlements such as Portsmouth, Cornholme, Walsden, and Eastwood.

The valley is the upper valley of the River Calder.

Where is Happy Valley filmed?

Happy Valley is filmed in the Calder Valley and around West Yorkshire. Sergeant Catherine's family home is an Edwardian terraced called Ivy Villas and it sits on picturesque Hanging Royd Lane, in the pretty town of Hebden Bridge, West Yorks.

Just a short train journey from Manchester and Leeds, the peaceful spot is a favourite for tourists soaking up the historic mill town’s peace and quiet.

Hebden Bridge is described as "a very vibrant town with an array of artisan shops, bars and restaurants, a cinema and regular markets and is an excellent place for commuters."

Happy Valley series three is made by Lookout Point for BBC One and iPlayer, in co-production with AMC Networks, the exclusive home for series three in the U.S. and Canada. BBC Studios is distributing the series internationally.

If you haven't seen the series, then you can watch the trailer for season one here...

How many seasons of Happy Valley are there?

There are currently three seasons of Happy Valley. The first two seasons are available to watch on iPlayer, and the third season has finished filming.

Season three will pick up on elements of the previous seasons, and the action starts when Catherine discovers the remains of a gangland murder victim in a drained reservoir it sparks a chain of events that unwittingly leads her straight back to Tommy Lee Royce.

Her grandson Ryan is now sixteen and still living with Catherine, but he has ideas of his own about what kind of relationship he wants to have with the man Catherine refuses to acknowledge as his father.

But still battling the seemingly never-ending problem of drugs in the valley and those who supply them, Catherine is on the cusp of retirement.

But Catherine has since been pictured with a bloodied nose in the aftermath of a police raid, while Tommy Lee Royce (James Norton) – with a radically different look – is seen in his prison cell, alongside first-look glimpses of Catherine’s sister Clare (Siobhan Finneran) and teenage grandson Ryan (Rhys Connah).

Siobhan Finneran as Claire Cartwright in Happy Valley Season 3

(Image credit: BBC)

How to watch Happy Valley

Happy Valley series three will premiere on BBC One and BBC iPlayer, and the first two series of Happy Valley are available to watch in full on BBC iPlayer now. In the U.S. and Canada, AMC Networks will be the exclusive home for series three which will be available on the AMC+ premium streaming bundle where series one and two are also now available to binge.

Who stars in Happy Valley?

Aside from Sarah Lancashire, also returning for season 3 is James Norton as Catherine’s nemesis, the murderer and sex offender Tommy Lee Royce, and Siobhan Finneran, Catherine’s sister, the recovering addict Clare Cartwright.

It has just been announced that the final series will also see the return of Happy Valley favourites Ishia Bennison as Joyce, Shane Zaza as Shaf, Chord Melodic as Sledge, and Mete Dursun as Gorkem. The join the previously announced new and returning cast members, Con O’Neill will reprise his role as Clare’s recovering alcoholic boyfriend Neil AckroydGeorge Costigan will return as Nevison Gallagher, with Charlie Murphy as his daughter and Catherine’s police colleague Ann. They will be joined by other Happy Valley returning favourites including Derek Riddell as Richard Cawood, Karl Davies as Daniel Cawood, Susan Lynch as Alison Garrs, Rick Warden as Mike Taylor, Vincent Franklin as Andy Shepherd, and Rhys Connah as Catherine’s grandson Ryan Cawood.

James Norton as Tommy Lee Royce in Happy Valley Season 3

(Image credit: BBC)

Meanwhile,  Amit Shah (The Other One, The Long Call), Mark Stanley (The Girl Before, White House Farm) and Mollie Winnard (All Creatures Great and Small, Four Lives) join the cast for series three, and will play pivotal roles in Happy Valley’s final chapter.

Happy Valley newcomers Oliver Huntingdon (The Rising), Jack Bandeira (Sex Education), Alec Secareanu (God’s Own Country), and Anthony Flanagan (Gentleman Jack) will also appear in series three.

Rhys Connah as Ryan Cawood in Happy Valley Season 3

(Image credit: BBC)

Speaking about her return, Sarah Lancashire said, “It’s time to let the dog see the rabbit.”

Meanwhile, James Norton said, “To take on Tommy one final time is a wonderful and daunting privilege, and something I’ve been looking forward to since we wrapped the last series, six years ago. I’m so excited to be working with the insanely talented Sally and Sarah again. Thinking we should all go on one last barge holiday, for old times’ sake.”

And actress Siobhan Finneran added, “I’m so thrilled to be returning to Happy Valley as Clare, and delighted to now be able to answer the question: “Please tell me there’s going to be another Happy Valley???” with a resounding “Yes there is.””

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Happy Valley season three will premiere on BBC One and BBC iPlayer, and the first two series of Happy Valley are available to watch in full on BBC iPlayer now.

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