Doctor says goodbye to Amy and Rory

Doctor Who has said a tearful farewell to sidekicks Amy and Rory as they were finally killed off at the hands of the terrifying weeping angels.

Viewers had known for months that the married duo (played by Karen Gillan and Arthur Darvill) were to leave the series but the manner of their exit had been a closely guarded secret until the BBC1 show was screened.

Amy went to her death in a bid to be reunited with her husband who had unexpectedly been bumped off by killer statues which had plagued New York.

It had looked as though the story would have a happy ending when the pair survived a fall from a skyscraper. They aimed to sacrifice themselves to save the city from the weeping angels - and an attack by the Statue of Liberty.

The couple's selfless act thwarted the attack and they found themselves coming round in a graveyard within sight of the city. However one of the statues survived, catching Rory unaware and killing him and, despite the efforts of the Doctor to intervene, heartbroken Amy opted to end her life to join her partner.

Their names were then seen etched on a granite headstone as the Doctor headed into the Tardis alongside Amy's daughter, River Song (Alex Kingston).

The Doctor went on to read a page written by Amy in which she says her farewell, telling him: "By the time you read these words, Rory and I will be long gone, so know that we lived well and were very happy. And above all else, know that we will love you always.

"Sometimes I do worry about you though. I think once we're gone you won't be coming back here for a while and you will be alone, which you should never be. Don't be alone, Doctor."

The programme was the last in a five-part series. A new assistant - played by Jenna-Louise Coleman - will join the Doctor when the show returns.

Gillan said she had been "emotional for about two weeks" after filming her final scenes. She said of her exit: "All I wanted was for her to go out in flames of blazing glory and she definitely does that. I couldn't have wished for a better way to go."