The Royal is a British period medical drama produced by ITV and aired normally on Sundays in the early evening slot; episodes after 21 June 2009, were also broadcast on ITV HD. The show consisted of eight series of one-hour episodes and was broadcast on ITV from 2003 until the show was cancelled in 2011, with repeats continuing on ITV3. The show is set in the 1960s and focuses on the fictional "St Aidan's Royal Free Hospital", an NHS hospital serving the fictional rural seaside town of Elsinby and its surrounding area. The show began as a spin-off of ITV's period police drama series, Heartbeat, featuring characters from Heartbeat during the first three series, before becoming its own entity.
The show itself was shot within Whitby, Scarborough, and the North Riding of Yorkshire, and stars of The Royal included Ian Carmichael, Wendy Craig, Robert Daws, and Amy Robbins. The show itself generated its own spin-off, entitled The Royal Today, which used the same settings but in the present day.