Peter Capaldi is leaving his iconic role as Doctor Who after three series' as the Time Lord, with the actor's final episode set to be the 2017 Christmas Special.

Capaldi announced the news last night on Jo Whiley's BBC Radio 2 show, saying,"One of the greatest privileges of being Doctor Who is to see the world at its best. From our brilliant crew and creative team working for the best broadcaster on the planet, to the viewers and fans whose endless creativity, generosity and inclusiveness points to a brighter future ahead. I can’t thank everyone enough. It’s been cosmic."

The former Thick of It star played the twelfth Doctor, replacing Matt Smith, and received some of the best-reviewed performances and episodes of recent series'.

Capaldi's final season will also tie in with writer and executive producer Steven Moffat's last so no doubt they plan on going out with a bang.

Moffatt said, "For years before I ever imagined being involved in Doctor Who, or had ever met the man, I wanted to work with Peter Capaldi. I could not have imagined that one day we’d be standing on the TARDIS together. Like Peter, I’m facing up to leaving the best job I’ll ever have, but knowing I do so in the company of the best, and kindest and cleverest of men, makes the saddest of endings a little sweeter. But hey, it’s a long way from over. Peter’s amazing, fiery, turbulent Doctor is still fighting the good fight, and his greatest adventures are yet to come. Monsters of the universe, be on your guard - Capaldi’s not done with you yet!"

Charlotte Moore, Director of BBC Content said:

"Peter Capaldi will always be a very special Doctor to me; his adventures through time and space started just as I arrived on BBC One. He has been a tremendous Doctor who has brought his own unique wisdom and charisma to the role. But, it's not over yet - I know the next series is going to be spectacular. He's a fine actor who I hope we work with again when he leaves the TARDIS".

Capaldi will return in the next series for 12 episodes in April, followed by the Christmas Special later in the year.

Of course the next question is, who should replace him?