Last night saw the end of an era with what is deemed to be the final Cornish premiere of Poldark at the Regal Theatre in Redruth, writes Rebecca Payne.

Nearly 9,000 people applied for tickets to wave a last goodbye to the stars of the show and get a sneak preview of what’s to come in series five.

The crowds filled the streets outside the theatre as stars of the show Luke Norris (Dr Dwight Enys), Jack Farthing (George Warleggan), Eleanor Tomlinson (Demelza Poldark), Ellise Chappell (Morwenna Chynoweth), and Tom York (Sam Carne), alongside executive producer Karen Thrussell and screen writer Debbie Horsfield, walked the red carpet. The stars took time chatting to fans, posing for photos and signing autographs before entering the cinema for the screening and Q and A session.

Winston Graham’s son Andrew was also in attendance.

The BBC’s Poldark adaptation achieved international popularity and has brought Cornwall’s mining history to the world’s attention, creating a huge surge in tourism in the County. Running since 2015, the popularity of the period drama was sustained throughout this time period, with 5.4 million viewers tuning in for the final episode of series four.

The last series ended on a cliffhanger, with George Warleggan’s wife Elizabeth dying following the birth of her daughter.

In Winston Graham’s books, the story skips a period of ten years following Elizabeth’s death. Series five of the TV series is based on writer Debbie Horsfield’s interpretation of what happened during this gap in the plot.

The BBC has released a plot summary for the series, which reads: “It is a new century and with it comes the promise of a hopeful future, but the past casts a long shadow over Cornwall.

“Following the death of Elizabeth, Ross Poldark resolves to put Westminster behind him and spend more time with the people he loves.

“However, when an old friend emerges with a plea for help, Ross is compelled to challenge the establishment again.

“As the Enyses rally to join the cause, Demelza must contend with dangers close to home, while George courts corrupt powers whose influence spans the Empire.”

In an interview with The Packet, Eleanor Tomlinson said: “It’s wonderful how many people have turned out. I’m so humbled by it. I’m so happy to be back in Cornwall.

“I love Bodmin Moor, that’s one of my favourites, and Charlestown is so beautiful. Having the fans watching us filming there was always so great. I will be coming back here on holiday.

“It’s wonderful to see what the series has done for Cornwall in terms of bringing people here and raising awareness about it.

“I’d never been here before filming Poldark and now I’ve spent so much time here that it will always hold a fond place in my heart.

“I’ve learnt so much from playing Demelza, and this series brings new challenges for her as a character and her and Ross’s relationship.

“Tonight will be the first time that I see episode one and I’m so excited.”

She said she hoped that the show would return one day to cover the rest of Winston Graham’s books.

Ellise Chappell said she was very emotional about the series coming to an end. She said: “Whenever I talk about it I feel tears well up behind my eyes.”

Ellise and Tom York both listed their favourite Cornish spots as St Ives and Penberth Cove, especially praising the food in St Ives, with Ellise referencing Porthminster Cafe as a particular favourite of hers.

Luke Norris hinted that the new series will present some challenges for Dwight and Ross’s relationship, and Jack Farthing revealed that we will see the more vulnerable elements of George’s character in this series.

Writer Debbie Horsfield said that the new series was based on hints that Winston Graham had made about what had happened in the time gap of the plot of his books, combined with style elements that he always used such as referencing historical events that were happening during that time period and introducing a few new characters along the way.

When quizzed on the subject, her and Executive Producer Karen Thrussell hinted that, although there are no plans in place for any further filming, this may not be the absolute end for Poldark.

Karen said: “A long time period would have to go by to reflect the changes in the plot in the books but it would certainly be something worth considering.”

When asked whether he would like to see the TV series return to cover the plot of the rest of his father’s books, Winston Graham’s son Andrew said “Yes. Absolutely. They’ll have to come back.”