Laurence Fox (Lewis) and Kate Fleetwood (Harlots) are joining the third season of ITV’s hit royals drama Victoria (first look pictured), with filming now underway in the UK.

Produced by Mammoth Screen as a co-production with Masterpiece, and created by writer and producer Daisy Goodwin, the new series sees Jenna Coleman (Doctor Who) reprise her role as the eponymous young Queen, alongside Tom Hughes (Paula) as Prince Albert. Fox will play charismatic and wayward Foreign Secretary Lord Palmerston, whilst Fleetwood will play Victoria’s mysterious sister Feodora.

Also joining the cast are actor and comedian John Sessions (The Loch) as Prime Minister John Russell, Lily Travers (Kingsman) as the Duchess of Monmouth, Nicholas Audsley (The White Princess), David Burnett (The Mummy) and Emily Forbes (Endeavour).

Starting in 1848, the third installment of the period drama will depict a turbulent and uncertain time for Europe and the monarchy. With revolutions on the continent and the Chartist movement reaching its peak in London, Victoria is under pressure from the government to leave London for her own safety.

The eight-part third season has been commissioned by ITV’s Head of Drama, Polly Hill, and production is being overseen by Senior Drama Commissioner Victoria Fea for ITV. It is being executive produced by Damien Timmer, Kate McKerrell and Daisy Goodwin for Mammoth Screen, and Rebecca Eaton for Masterpiece. The series will be produced by David Boulter (Dickensian) and Geoff Sax (Tipping The Velvet) will direct the first block.

Victoria was ITV’s highest-rated drama of 2016 and the second season attracted a consolidated average of 6.4m viewers and a 25% share. In the U.S., the second season scored an average audience of 5.2m viewers on PBS.