The period drama show 'Downton Abbey' has been renewed for a 5th season. ITV and Carnival Films, who make the TV series, made the announcement today (No 10th).

Downton Abbey
Hugh Bonneville (Center) leads the cast of 'Downton Abbey'

ITV reports, The 4th season, which also ended today, produced average viewing figures of 11.8 million people, making it the highest rated drama of 2013.

The show has also been a hit stateside as season 3, which aired on PBS, was watched by an average of 24 million Americans, making it the network's most watched drama to date.

Jim Carter
Jim Carter plays 'Charles Carson', who is the Butler

Gareth Neame, the managing director of Carnival Films, said "Audiences have enjoyed their regular Sunday evening visits back to Downton once again this autumn and we are thrilled to produce a new series of the show next year. we promise all the usual highs and lows, romance, drama and comedy."

He added, "All the actors and makers of the show continue to be humbled by the extraordinary audience response and want to take the show from strength to strength next year".

Julian Fellowes will return to pen the upcoming 5th season, who will also act as the show's executive producer along with Liz Trubridge and Gareth Neame.

Lily James
Lily James play 'Lady Rose MacClare

ITV's Director of Drama Commissioning, Steve November, also commented on the renewal announcement, "we know it will be as warm, witty, romantic and dramatic as previous series and we can't wait to catch up with our favourite characters again."

The show first hit the small screen on ITV in 2010 and to this date it has been sold in 220 territories with estimated viewing figures from around the globe to be at 120 million people.

Season 5 of 'Downton Abbey' is set to air on ITV in 2014 and on PBS' Masterpiece in the US.

Daisy Mason
Sophie McShera portrays Daisy Mason