PREVIEW: The Surrogates, BBC Three

Filmed over 18 months, this three-part documentary series produced in partnership with The Open University delves into the subject of surrogacy, by following the experiences of five young British women, all embarking on complex journeys by trying to have babies for other people.



The number of children born through surrogacy in the UK has tripled in the last three years. With demand for fertile young women higher than ever, this series looks at the reality of choosing to have someone else’s baby and what it’s like for those competing for surrogates.


Episode one In this episode we meet Caitlin and her boss Kate. Caitlin is 26, a single mum, and in a new relationship with her boyfriend Jordan. Kate and her partner Matt have lost three pregnancies, including one at 32 weeks. Kate has been told that medically she could carry her own baby, but after such difficult experiences, she doesn’t feel able to. After talking about surrogacy in the office, Caitlin offered to help Kate and Matt have a baby.


Meanwhile, 23 year-old Emma is pregnant with the baby of a gay couple she met on a fertility matching app just a few months earlier. As her bump grows and she discovers the gender of the child, it begs the question, will she become more attached, and will letting go of the baby be more difficult than she first thought?


We also meet David, 40, a single gay man hoping to have a child through surrogacy. David wants to use an anonymous donor egg and joins a surrogacy organisation in the hopes of meeting a woman who will carry his child. But in most surrogacy agencies, intended parents aren’t allowed to ask a woman to be their surrogate, so David hopes he will be picked by someone. How will he navigate this, and will he successfully attract the right woman?


The Surrogates is available from Sunday 14th March on BBC Three and is due to be repeated on BBC One.