'Doc Martin' last ever episode: When is it on? Why is it ending? What happens?

The final season of Doc Martin is here. (ITV)
The final season of Doc Martin is here. (ITV)

It's an emotional evening for Doc Martin fans as they prepare to say goodbye to the long-running medical drama.

The ITV series has run for 10 seasons and gained fans from all over the world, but the time has come for it to bow out.

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When is the Doc Martin final episode on TV?

Doc Martin's last ever episode, the eighth instalment of season 10, will air on Wednesday, 26 October, at 9pm on ITV.

However, there is still a festive special to look forward to later this year.

What happens in the Doc Martin finale?

Will Doc Martin really leave? (ITV)
Will Doc Martin really leave? (ITV)

Fans of the show will know that Martin Clunes' lead character Dr Martin Ellingham has been grappling with a blood phobia that has hampered his career and seen him pulled up before the GMC.

However, his career now looks to be firmly back on track, and in last week's penultimate episode viewers were shocked to see the Doc faced with the decision of whether to turn his back on the idyllic Cornish town of Portwenn after being offered a prestigious new job at Imperial College in London.

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In the finale, it appears that Martin, his wife Louisa (Caroline Catz) and their two children are preparing for city life, with the locals getting together to throw them a goodbye party.

The locals prepare to say goodbye. (ITV)
The locals prepare to say goodbye. (ITV)

But it seems that the family aren't going to make their own party as someone has spotted their lost dog, which they go in search of.

Martin is also facing down danger in a cow stampede that will hopefully have less of a dramatic outcome than Emmerdale's, but will events conspire to make him reconsider his future?

The episode will see final performances from beloved cast members including Ian McNeice, Joe Absolom, Jessica Ransom and Eileen Atkins.

Why is Doc Martin ending?

Caroline Catz and Martin Clunes star as Louisa and Martin. (ITV/Shutterstock)
Caroline Catz and Martin Clunes star as Louisa and Martin. (ITV/Shutterstock)

Series bosses simply decided that the popular series had run its course after 10 seasons.

After its cancellation was announced, Clunes made it very clear that fans of the show were not part of the decision-making process when it came to the end.

He told Radio Times: "We didn’t make [fans] part of any decision-making process at any other point, so mind your own business.

"One of my wife’s riding teachers says never let the horse make the decision, horses make terrible decisions. So maybe never let a viewer make a decision."

Joe Absolom and Martin Clunes in Doc Martin. (ITV)
Joe Absolom and Martin Clunes in Doc Martin. (ITV) (Neil Genower)

Meanwhile, Absolom who plays Al Large has made the opposite move to the Ellinghams in real life, relocating from London to Cornwall with his wife and three children.

He told The Mirror he was attracted by a slower pace of life and lower crime rate, saying: "I’m not saying London is awful and that there’s no crime in Cornwall, but the idea of going to the beach and jumping in the sea whenever I want, or going for a run along the coast path, really appealed.

"My children’s lives are in Cornwall now."

Doc Martin concludes tonight at 9pm on ITV.