Telly talk: Doc Martin’s Martin Clunes,

Woman's Own - - Woman’s Own Welcome -

Our favourite grumpy doc­tor is back as Martin Clunes re­turns in a new se­ries of Doc Martin. Here the ac­tor, 55, tells us more...

You cre­ate a big ap­petite for Doc Martin by re­turn­ing ev­ery other year. Is that in­ten­tional?

No, but it does seem to have that ef­fect. We did it ev­ery other year so that our daugh­ter, Emily, didn’t lose both her par­ents ev­ery sum­mer [Martin’s wife, Philippa, pro­duces

Doc Martin, and they shoot it in Corn­wall]. Plus, it takes a long time to get the script right. A lot of hard work goes into try­ing to keep it fresh, while tick­ing all the boxes that peo­ple seem to like – the lo­ca­tions, the char­ac­ters.

How do you get back into the char­ac­ter of grumpy, blood-pho­bic Dr Martin Elling­ham?

Hav­ing my trousers held up by braces and wear­ing a suit and tie have a big im­pact – I can’t slouch or re­lax, be­cause nei­ther does the doc. It helps me get into his body.

What’s up with the doc and his wife Louisa (Caro­line Catz), this time?

They’re try­ing to make their mar­riage work. Louisa starts hav­ing doubts about split­ting her time be­tween work and their child, and the doc tries to be un­der­stand­ing. He even al­lows them to get a dog for their son, al­though he hates it and spends a lot of time shout­ing at it.

But you’re a renowned an­i­mal lover! Wasn’t shout­ing at the dog hard for you?

With the dog trainer, we de­vel­oped a trick where I don’t ac­tu­ally shout – I mouth the words, and then tape the shout­ing later. That way, even if Buddy and the doc don’t have a good re­la­tion­ship, I have a great one with Dodger, who plays him.

How many an­i­mals do you have on your farm in Dorset?

We’ve got 10 dogs at the mo­ment, be­cause a month ago we had a litter of seven cocker spaniels. We have three cats and 51 cows and a large flock of sheep, so I do lamb­ing as well.

of Martin with one friends four-legged his The doc and his wife Louisa, played by Caro­line Catz

And here with his wife Philippa and daugh­ter Emily

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