The Huntman: Winter’s War star Sheridan Smith, Abigail’s Party star Alison Steadman and Sinead Keenan (Little Boy Blue) are to star in Care, a BBC One drama created by Broken and The Accused creator Jimmy McGovern.

Care, a 90-minute drama, will be produced by Colin McKeown’s LA Productions for BBC. It will tell the story of Smith’s Jenny, a mother-of-two raising her girls alone after the departure of her husband Dave. Her one lifeline is Mary, played by Steadman, Jenny’s widowed mother whose help with childcare allows Jenny to hold down her full-time job at the supermarket. When Mary suffers a devastating stroke and develops dementia, Jenny’s world comes crashing down and everything changes for her and her sister Claire, played by Keenan. Finding herself torn between her own life and the well-being of her mother, Jenny soon discovers that another way could be possible.

McGovern, who also created Robbie Coltrane crime drama Cracker, will write alongside Gillian Juckes, whose real-life experiences formed the inspiration for the story.

Care was commissioned by Piers Wenger, Controller of BBC Drama. It will be directed by David Blair (Reg) and will be produced by Colin McKeown and Donna Molloy (Broken). Executive Producers are Colin McKeown and Jimmy McGovern for LA Productions and Lucy Richer for the BBC. Filming will begin shortly in and around Liverpool.

McGovern said it had a “great cast, a wonderful director and a superb co-writer.” Wenger added, “It’s always an honor to work with Jimmy McGovern, here joining forces with Gillian Juckes on her first script for a television drama. Together they tell a truly remarkable story of one woman’s battle to get the best care for her mother. The cast, led by the wonderful Sheridan Smith, will portray this poignant story with the warmth and gravitas it deserves.”