Jodie Whittaker will be stepping down as the first female Time Lord by the end of 2022, along with Doctor Who’s current showrunner, Chris Chibnall. In an official post from the BBC, Whittaker said she would “carry the Doctor and the lessons I’ve learnt forever.”

According to a post from the official Doctor Who Twitter page, both Whittaker and Chibnall will “leave Doctor Who in a trio of Specials, culminating in an epic blockbuster Special to air in autumn 2022 as part of the BBC’s Centenary celebrations.”

With six episodes due in the Autumn, another two specials and a “final feature length adventure” to wrap up a trilogy are planned for 2022 before Whittaker hands over the TARDIS keys.

“In 2017 I opened my glorious gift box of size 13 shoes,” Whittaker continues in her statement. “I could not have guessed the brilliant adventures, worlds and wonders I was to see in them.”

“My heart is so full of love for this show, for the team who make it, for the fans who watch it and for what it has brought to my life.” 

Following Peter Capaldi’s exit from Doctor Who in 2017’s Christmas Special “Twice Upon A Time”, Whittaker, also known for her work on Broadchurch, (also penned by Chibnall), became the first female Doctor in the show’s history.

Chibnall, who’d contributed scripts for Doctor Who since its revival in 2005,  praised his team as “exceptional”, describing the experience as showrunner as “unrivalled creative fun, and one of the great joys of my career.”

Chibnall described Whittaker as a “magnificent, iconic Doctor”, further calling her “the gold standard leading actor, shouldering the responsibility of being the first female Doctor with style, strength, warmth, generosity and humour.”

“I wish our successors – whoever the BBC and BBC Studios choose – as much fun as we’ve had. They’re in for a treat!”

Doctor Who will return in the Autumn, with Mandip Gill reprising her role as Yaz alongside Whittaker. Comedian John Bishop will be joining Whittaker and Gill as Dan.