Sheridan Smith's drama 'Four Lives' is set to air next month.

Sheridan Smith in Four Lives

Sheridan Smith in Four Lives

The upcoming three-part series - which is based on a true crime story - is set to air almost three years after it was filmed, because the inquest into the victims had been delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The show - which stars 'Gavin & Stacey' actress Sheridan alongside Stephen Merchant - will air on three consecutive nights on BBC One from January 3, 2022.

Each episode will start at 9pm, and all three will be available on iPlayer after the first has aired.

Written by Neil McKay, the series sees Merchant play Stephen Port, who killed four men - Anthony Walgate, Gabriel Kovari, Daniel Whitworth and Jack Taylor - after luring each to his East London flat.

He was jailed for life back in 2016, and the families of the victims hope that the show will explore how the police handled the investigation.

Meanwhile, Sheridan will play Anthony's mother Sarah Sak, with the cast also featuring the likes of Jaime Winstone, Samuel Barnett, Robert Emms, Rufus Jones, Leanne Best, Daniel Ryan and Stephanie Hyman.

In a press release confirming the programme's launch date, the BBC said: "'Four Lives' focuses on the fight to uncover the truth about what had happened to their lost sons, brothers and loved ones in the face of a now widely condemned police investigation."

The series is directed by David Blair and produced by Serena Cullen, while Jeff Pope - who collaborated with McKay on 'Appropriate Adult' and 'The Moorside' - will serve as executive producer for ITV Studios, with McKay and Lucy Richer noted as executive producers for the BBC.