HISTORY was made last night as Jodie Whittaker was announced as the latest incarnation of television’s favourite time traveller Doctor Who.

The Broadchurch star is the first woman to take on the title role in Doctor Who since its creation in 1963, and for most fans it was a welcome change.

Accrington actress Julie Hesmondhalgh, who co-starred with Ms Whittaker this year in Broadchurch. took to twitter to share her delight at the ground breaking casting decision.

She said: “Jodie Whittaker is one of the acest, most funny people I’ve ever worked with. Over the moon.”

Ms Hesmondhalgh, who is no stranger to controversial roles herself, is best known for playing Hayley Cropper in Coronation Street.

Hayley came to the show as the first transgender character on a British soap and left in a controversial right to die story line, following a battle with pancreatic cancer.

Ms Hesmondhalgh then went on to star in Cucumber, an original series exploring the passions and pit falls of 21st century gay life, created by Russel T Davis, the man behind the Doctor Who revival in 2005.

Colin Baker, who played the sixth doctor also Tweeted his support saying: “Well I never the BBC really did do the right thing and let the Doctor be in touch with her feminine side. As a father of daughters - result!”

Tracy-Ann Oberman, who has previously starred in Doctor Who, posted: “A generation of young Whovians who will now know that as a female in the Universe you don’t have to be the assistant.”

However not all fans have been so supportive of the ground breaking casting decision, refusing to believe that the time travelling alien with two hearts could be successfully portrayed by a woman.

Long time Dr Who fan, Wendy Roberts, posted on Twitter: “My time lord hero was always a lord not a lady! No disrespect to the actress chosen but the producers have brought my Dr Who histories and memories to an abrupt end.”

Some commenters believed the decision was merely an act of political correctness, Twitter user Nicki Murphy wrote: “I like Jodi, I think she is a terrific actor but I’m sorry, this is an exercise in pleasing the PC brigade. How about writing some new, quality roles for females... this is an attempt to meet some quota.”

Jodie Whittaker will take over from current Tardis occupant Peter Capaldi in the Christmas special this December.