Cast Interview

Sarah and Gary

Sarah and Gary kissed but the course of true love never did run smooth - especially for these two!

We asked Tina O’Brien whether this could be the start of a beautiful relationship?

Why does Sarah ask Gary to go for a drink? Is it a date? How does Bethany react to this?

Sarah is grateful for Gary’s help so she invites him out for a drink as friends but when Gary arrives dressed up, looking smart, she is like ohhh hello. So there is a little something there, a spark.

Sarah doesn’t assume for one second that Bethany would be bothered that she is seeing Gary.

What is it about Gary that Sarah has fallen for?

Gary has clearly been in and out of trouble in the past but he has got his head screwed on. He’s a really sweet guy, he seems very kind and Sarah thinks he is quite fit!

Is she ready for a new romance - is the grisly past behind her now?

Sarah is very fragile so no, I don’t think she is ready. It will be interesting to see, if she does take the plunge, how any issues from the past colour a new relationship.

How does she feel when she finds out that Gary knew about Bethany’s diet pills?

Sarah is devastated because she feels that Gary should have told her. Bethany is her daughter - she feels that he has kept something really, really important from her. But Sarah also feels guilty and when she does confront Gary a lot of it is to do with that she feels that Bethany should have been confiding in her, not him. She feels a bit of a failure.

Did she have any idea that Bethany was taking them?

No idea at all, no. Sarah obviously knew that Bethany has been having issues with exercise and she had asked her if she had been making herself sick - something that Bethany denied. So this fresh blow for Sarah comes as a massive shock.

Doe she confront Gary? If so, how does he react?

Sarah goes absolutely mad at him and quite overreacts in a way. She knows she could have thought things through a little bit more but she does not handle the situation very well and it is clear that things are not good for them anymore.

What does she make of Izzy’s suggestion that she should give him a second chance?

At first Sarah is confused about why Izzy is getting involved because obviously Izzy and Gary have a past and they have a child together. Sarah is very wary of her motives but Izzy tries to reassure her that she just wants to see Gary happy.

Can she forgive him?

I think Sarah can forgive Gary but I just don't know at this point whether there is a future for them... The talk with Izzy makes Sarah realise that she has handled the situation badly but it also sparks Sarah to conclude that she needs to focus more on her children. Sarah resolves to put any idea of romance on the shelf because this situation with Bethany has upset her so much that she just wants to be a better mum.

What advice would you give Sarah? Do you reckon she should forgive him?

I would say that she could take more time to listen to her daughter and to work on communicating better with Bethany. But at the same time I would say don't rule something out that could potentially blossom with Gary because he could be a really good guy and Sarah needs a good guy in her life.

Would you like her to have a boyfriend?

At first I was like nooo! I thought Sarah was better on her own because there is always complications. But now I think she does need to feel safe and it would be lovely for her to have someone to confide in. It would be better for her in the long run.

Would she worry about his ex living on the doorstep?

Maybe, because Sarah got the impression that there was more than meets the eye there with Izzy, that there might be some feelings that are still there. But Sarah is pretty ruthless so she probably would still go there anyway!

Would she worry about how close Bethany’s been with Gary?

I think Sarah feels that Bethany should have her head screwed on. If Gary maybe gave Bethany the wrong idea, particularly as she is at an age where she might mistake kindness for more, Sarah is confident that Bethany would realise that there is nothing more to it...

Are you looking forward to a fresh start for Sarah now?

Yes, it is great to see Sarah building herself back up, getting on with life and being involved with her family.

There is still plenty of drama in store for the Platts, can she take it in her stride?

Sarah is in a much stronger place now than she has ever been but whether or not she can handle the drama that is in store is a different matter. Anything could send her back down the wrong path to that dark place in her mind so she really does have to keep herself reigned in and her head screwed on.

David's On The Edge

Everyone thinks that David has been holding it together remarkably well since Kylie's death but scratch below the surface and he's anything but okay.

Jack P Shepard hints at the danger to come!

How is David coping at the moment with everything that has gone on?

On the surface it looks like David is fine. He is still taking the kids to school, getting them breakfast, family things like that. But underneath he is hiding a lot of the pain from Kylie’s death.

Why does he agree to go to counselling?

To shut Gail up!

Gail is always on at him to do something. She knows he doesn’t want to speak to her but maybe it is best for him to speak to a stranger. But David thinks it’s ridiculous, why is he going to pour his heart out to a stranger?

What happens at the session?
It is quite funny, David goes in to speak to the therapist while Gail waits outside but he actually does not say a word for half an hour. The therapist is trying to get him to connect but all David wants to do is scour Macca’s social media page to find out what he’s doing.

When he leaves the session, Gail asks how it was and David lies that it was uplifting, that he got loads off his chest, that he cried...he tells her a pack of lies basically! And of course Gail is oblivious, it just goes over her head.

Why is he on Macca's social media page? Is he checking up on him at this point?

Because Clayton is away in prison and awaiting trial, David cannot get to him to carry out his revenge plot so the only thing he can do is get to Macca, Clayton’s brother. David wants to cause Macca pain to make him suffer for his own loss.

What makes David storm over to the Dog and Gun? What happens when he gets there?

The Dog and the Gun is the mothership for Calum’s old gang and, sure enough, Macca is there but before David can get to him he runs into even more trouble. As David is peering through the window, there is a dark shadow behind him. He turns and next thing he knows he is pinned up against a wall by this menacing character who wants to cause him harm.

Does he fight back when he is viciously attacked?

Well David tries to get away however, more so he is very accepting that he will be beaten to a pulp - but the timing for him is all wrong.

David says, “Fine, do what you want, I don’t care, but right now I need to get into that pub.”

The guy is confused so David says, “I can’t explain right now…” and that's when he gets attacked.

This shows David’s fragile mindset at the moment. He is so hellbent on getting to Macca that he is not bothered about getting a few punches, as long as this doesn’t interfere with his revenge plan because that is his priority.

How was that scene to film?

Really, really good! When we were about to film the attack it started to pour it down, I mean torrential rain, so the director said we may have to be rained off but I was keen to do the fight scenes in the wet weather. It looks great on screen that David is getting beaten up in the downpour; it reminded me of the final battle in the Matrix when they are up in the sky with all the rain, it felt like that for me.

Is David worried when the police turn up and arrest him for perverting the course of justice?

At first David is confident that the police don’t have anything on him. But it dawns on him that this may put Clayton’s trial in jeopardy. David is anxious when the police accuse him of perverting the course of justice especially as he has been guilty of doing this before. It riles David that Clayton might even have his trial moved well away from Weatherfield.

How does he feel when he finds out about Macca’s head injury?

David laughs which makes him look even more guilty and when the police ask him about his own violent injuries, his best excuse is that he fell over a dog! David has no real alibi and it looks as though Macca is in a critical condition.

David knows exactly where Macca is in the hospital so he heads off there next. I liked the scenes when David goes with flowers, chocolates and grapes, even telling the ward staff he is here to see his cousin Macca - but it’s clear he is up to something sinister. David waits all day for Macca to come out of theatre and there’s a great shot when Macca is wheeled out. The trolley pauses and there is a frame of David staring over an unconscious, oblivious Macca for a few seconds before the trolley is wheeled away again. David is there to kill.

Does he feel guilty about his promise to Kylie to be a good guy?

No, because David made two promises. He made a promise that he would look after the kids and bring them up well but he also made a promise to Kylie that he would get revenge on the people who murdered her. David believes he is not breaking either promise because once he has killed Macca, his children will be looked after by Gail and Nick. So for David, his revenge plot is win-win.

What do you think it will take to snap David out of this road to revenge?

I don’t think anything will! Obviously Kylie meant everything to him and this is now his goal. When David gets an idea in his head, he will not stop at anything until he has accomplished whatever he needs to or until the point where he is physically unable to do any more...

  • Cast Interview

Don't Mess With Alya!

Alya has been through a lot over the past couple of years but Sharif's betrayal has made her see the world in a different light.

We spoke to Sair Khan about Alya's harder edge - Sharif better watch out!

How does Ayla feel when she finds out about Sharif’s affair?

Alya feels completely dumbfounded when she finds out about Sharif’s affair. She had suspicions that something was going on between him and Sonia but she never thought she was going to be proved right.

She only ever thought it was flirting and in her head that was the worst case scenario, it wasn’t on and she was going to tell him off. She never even contemplated the reality of what he’s been up to and she’s so shocked. Alya’s always looked up to her grandparents and held them in such high regard so this causes her to lose all respect for Sharif.

Initially she doesn’t find out the duration of the affair, she thinks it was a one time thing years ago so for her to have such a strong reaction without knowing the full truth says something about how disturbed she is by it all.

Is she tempted to tell Yasmeen?

The only thing that’s stopping her from telling Yasmeen the truth is that Sharif plays it down so much and tells her it happened a long time ago and he has massive regrets. She wants to tell Yasmeen the truth but she doesn’t know what good it’s going to do, she’s scared of breaking up the family, she doesn’t want to be the one who has to tear the family apart.

What’s her motivation for blackmailing him? What do you make of this ruthless side of Alya?

I think there are a few aspects to the blackmail. One is that she’s furious with Sharif, he’s got the cash at his disposal because he’s about to buy Sonia a flat but yet he won’t invest in her, also she wants to punish him, she doesn’t want him to have his cake and eat it.

Alya’s trying to make the best of a bad situation for herself. Her main motivation isn’t to get herself ahead though, it’s to punish Sharif, it’s not as selfish as it seems.

Why does Alya need the money she asks him for?

Alya is trying to set up a new business with Aidan, running alongside Underworld. Last year she made some bespoke basques with Sinead and when Aidan finds the designs he thinks he has clients who’d be interested. But they realise they’re going to need some new machinery to recreate the embroidery on the designs so she needs the money to buy this expensive machine.

She wants to become 50/50 business partners with Aidan on this side strand of the factory, she wants a bit more power.

Alya seems to be turning into a hard-nosed businesswoman - she even tells Sinead she’s no longer required. Is Alya very ambitious?

I think Alya is very ambitious, when she came onto the street having finished university she had grand plans to start her own business, that’s always been her goal. But over the last two years she’s had so many setbacks in her personal life that it’s been really difficult for her to achieve her dream.

When she blamed Carla for her dad Kal’s death that really set her back in the factory so she’s been doing her best to get back up the ladder ever since and when this opportunity arises she’s determined to make the most of it. Everything else is falling to pieces around her after the discovery of Sharif’s affair and it’s only her work, her drive and her ambition that are holding her together at the moment.

In terms of Sinead, it’s nothing personal, it’s just that she knows to focus on the business and make any money out of it she can’t have any spare parts and Sinead’s collateral damage, sorry!

Are you enjoying playing this edgier side of her? Would you like her to go a bit darker?

Yes I’d definitely like to see her go darker, reflecting on everything that’s happened to her over the last few years I don’t think you would just be bright and bubbly. She’s been orphaned, lost what she thought was the love of her life through a stupid mistake which nearly ripped her family apart, and now she’s realised she’s on her own.

She’s got to look out for herself.

– Sair Khan

Is she worried that Yasmeen will find out about her involvement, that she knew about the affair and blackmailed Sharif?
She is really worried about Yasmeen finding out, she makes the decision not to tell Yasmeen because she thinks it was only a one off and maybe they can bury it as it happened so long ago.

How did you all react as a group when you learned about Sharif’s affair twist?

We all reacted very positively because as a family it gives us all so much to play out, it sticks us bang in the middle of all the conflict. It was set up so perfectly after seeing Sharif’s strong reaction towards Alya when he found out about her fling with Jason, now we find out he’s had an affair, the hypocrisy of the situation is great to play.

What is your dream storyline for Ayla? Underworld’s new boss, perhaps?

My dream for Alya wouldn’t be to own Underworld but to own her own business on the street that would rival Underworld and be better, to see her become a bit of a business mogul, she’s got dreams that are bigger than just knicker factories.

Is it about time she found a new man?

It’s absolutely time that Alya found a new man, Gary’s moved on and she’s genuinely happy for him, she’s put to bed what happened even though she’ll always love him and it’s great to see him looking to the future and she wants the same for herself.

She needs someone to test her, so we can see a different side to her. I think she needs an older man, who’s strong, who’s got their life sorted and who’s got focus and drive like she has.

  • Cast Interview

Will Todd Team Up With Phelan?

Pat has played a masterstroke by offering Todd in on his scam.

Will Todd make a deal with the devil, or is Phelan about to get his fingers burnt? Bruno Langley teases what's to come!

When does Todd first find out about Phelan’s building scam?

Todd has known that Phelan is not a good guy for a long time. He overhears conversations and because he is quick and quite a clever guy, he can put two and two together.

He is constantly confronting Pat and vows to find proof of the building scam to give to the police.

Why can’t he report Phelan to the police?

Todd’s frustrated because he feels that the police won’t take him seriously. Phelan has also stated there would be bad implications on Eileen and Jason’s finances so Todd decides the best thing to do is keep his mouth shut.

How does Todd react when Phelan calls him to the building site for a chat?

Todd is pleased. He thinks he finally has Phelan on the back foot but, unbeknown to him, things are about to go from bad to worse after he leaves his phone in the Rovers...

Sean gets a call on Todd's phone from the Bishop!

Billy finds out that Todd has reported them to the Bishop. Can you tell us why he did that?

Todd is testing Billy’s morals and whether he is more important to him than his congregation. Todd does care a lot about himself so when Billy first mentions that he might leave the church, in the back of Todd’s mind he just focuses on: ‘Wow, Billy really does like me because he is willing to give all that up.’

So that is what spurs Todd on. He thinks that Billy just needs that extra push and he later tells Billy that he did it for him so he could be free to be himself.

I don’t believe Todd though. I think Todd did it for himself and maybe like 5% he did it for Billy!

– Bruno Langley

How does Billy react when Todd explains himself?

Billy is furious and says it is over, that’s it, clean cut for him. He says ‘I don’t understand you Todd, you can be nice when you want to be.’ He is baffled by Todd’s behaviour and Todd feels so bad when Billy dumps him, he’s upset.

Why does Todd go to the building site?

Firstly, Phelan keeps giving Todd little digs about working in a flower shop with all his pansies. He goads Todd with the promise of working with the big boys, making some money and doing something with his life. Phelan is telling the truth from his point of view and Todd takes it onboard. So when Billy says it’s over, that is the catalyst for Todd.

He looks at what he has got and decides he might as well step up to what Billy thinks of him, put his morals on the back burner and just get on with it.

How does Phelan react to Todd’s change of heart?

Phelan is suspicious but like most things in life you know when someone is telling you the truth. Todd tells Phelan it is because he is twisted and that’s who he is… and Phelan buys it!

I think Phelan sees a lot of himself in Todd.

Can Vinny, Phelan and Todd play nice?

Do you think Todd is a match for Phelan? Or do you think they could be a dangerous team together?

Yes, they are a match for each other but that is a hard one because I really like Connor (who plays Phelan) and I really like working with him. So if that means that I prefer the two of them in some dastardly plan together, then so be it. We work well together because he is a very serious actor and I take it very seriously too so we both really care about the work.

What reaction do you get from viewers - are they ‘Team Todd’ or ‘Team Phelan’?

Connor knows more about this than me because I try not to think about it. People in the street ask me, ‘When is Phelan going to get his comeuppance,’ as they would do because that’s what happens with a villain. People want that and villains have to get their just deserts...

Would you personally like Todd to be the one to bring Phelan down?

Yes, of course because I love the drama!

He seems a bit nicer these days - do you prefer good Todd or bad Todd?

I don’t think they both have to be mutually exclusive. I like both sides to him and I like that you can’t pin him down which makes interesting viewing because you don’t know what he is going to do next.

He is very unpredictable and that’s great to act. I don’t want to be the nice guy in the pub! It is harder for me to get where he is coming from when he is doing these bad things because that’s not me, I consider myself quite a nice guy, but either way it is fun!

Will Todd join Phelan in ripping off Alex?

What else is coming up for Todd?

We will see Todd using his effortless charm to fleece his neighbours but, realising he is playing with fire, it’s a ticking time-bomb before Todd and Phelan lock horns again.

Although Todd and Phelan are both similar characters in their twisted ways, Todd has one weakness and Phelan knows exactly how to use this to his advantage.

Todd is in real danger if he doesn’t act smart and quick.

  • Cast Interview

Craig's Dad

Craig goes to visit Darryl in prison. We spoke to Colson Smith about what this means to Craig and the fallout for Beth and the rest of the family.

How does Craig feel now he knows about his dad’s criminal history?

Craig has always been in the dark about his dad. His mum has told him many things; she has said he’s a stuntman, she has said he was a drunk so one of the hardest things for Craig is that he still doesn’t know what his dad is in jail for.

At first, he is relieved to find out more about his dad but he is worried about what his criminal record actually entails.

What’s his relationship with Beth like at this point?

Craig and Beth are not speaking because he feels betrayed by his mum. The situation with his dad has always been a grey area and Craig feels that he should have known the truth a long time ago. This causes friction between the two characters and Craig rules Beth out of his life for this moment in time.

How does he feel when he learns that Faye has written to his dad?

Craig feels like there is a breakdown of trust between him and Faye because she has been his best friend for a long time but she has gone behind his back. He struggles to come to terms with the fact that she has made the decision for him.

But I think that actually Craig is relieved too. He would never have had the courage to write to his dad. With Faye taking that action into her own hands, she has pushed Craig towards a step that he wouldn’t have dared to take himself.

What are his first thoughts when he finds out his dad wants to see him?

There is a bit of a moment because Craig really isn’t sure about any of this. His real dad has not been there for the big moments and that is a big thing to Craig because, with Beth being down the pub a lot, at times he has been quite solo and he has been his own best friend in many ways.

Craig looks back and thinks his dad would add a lot to his life.

– Colson Smith

Why is he so torn about whether to visit or not?

In Craig’s head, he is probably listening to his mum even though he doesn’t want to. He doesn’t know what to expect from the visit because Beth has always painted Darryl in such a bad light, even naming Craig’s pet rat after him, but he would love that father/son bond. The closest thing he has got to a father figure is Tim.

How does he feel going behind Beth’s back?

Craig doesn’t care about Beth at all this week because there is so much emotion, so much adrenaline after all the lies. He is disgusted with Beth so it doesn’t even cross his mind how she will feel. Craig is worried about Kirk though, so he has a chat with him and says he still loves him even though he is going to meet his real dad. But, as far as Craig is concerned, Beth doesn’t mean anything to him right now.

What is Darryl like and how does the meeting between him and Craig go?

To begin with, Craig and Darryl get on really well and there is a clear father/son bond. However, as the meeting goes on, Darryl asks Craig to bring drugs into the prison and Craig actually realises that his mum was right all along.

Craig stands up to his dad and this is the turning point. In that beat Craig starts to cut Beth some slack. But Darryl’s next breath ruins that relationship between Craig and Beth...

How does Craig react to Darryl’s bombshell and how bad could the implications be for the family?

Craig finds it shocking and he doesn’t know what to do. When he gets home, he is nasty but it is because he is so affected by the news that Darryl has given him. Beth has done something that goes totally against everything that Craig believes in.

This could cause turmoil in the family; this could break Kirk and Beth up, it could break Beth and Sinead up - anything could happen. It could tear the whole family apart.

Has it been fun having Craig move in with Tim and Sally?

We had some great laughs! The scenes where Craig was drunk were actually hard to film as they were both at the end of a long day but we still had a great time because working with Joe and Sally is brilliant. We all get on really well so it was nice to “move in” with them - I’m their adopted son!

Do you think Craig would make a good police officer and would you like the opportunity to play one yourself?

I think Craig has got what it takes to be a police officer and I would enjoy playing one. If Craig did become a police officer then we would see a lot more sides to him - would he be the good cop?Would he be the bad cop? Would he be a point of authority on the street or would the pressure get to him?

There is loads to explore in terms of the character if Craig was to become a police officer...

  • Cast Interview

Nick Knows The Truth!

Nick is devastated by the revelation that Steve is the father of Leanne's baby but what will he do next?

Ben Price hints at what's coming up...

Why does Nick want everyone to think that the baby is his?

Nick’s partly protecting Leanne and maybe a bit of it is pride as he just doesn’t want the ear ache from his mum. He doesn’t want questions.

Nick wants to feel like he and Leanne could be a family and as he’s going to be right there from when the baby is very young, he does think that they could grow to be a family. So he sees this as the only step to making it work. Not to mention he’s only just come out of a failed marriage to Carla so it’s not great timing as he’s got to be a bit careful to make his and Leanne’s relationship look smooth.

Does he really think he will be able to raise the child as his own even though it isn’t?

I don’t know, I think Nick loves Leanne and he will love the child but it is a big question that I think he’s going to struggle with. I don’t think he’s got it completely set in his mind, all he knows is that he does loves Leanne and wants to look after her.

However Nick does have a relationship with Simon. That is Peter Barlow’s child and he hates Peter Barlow, so he has got it in him but it may always be a sticking point.

You just don’t know until the baby comes but he is honest and true about his feelings for Leanne.

– Ben Price

Does Nick have any idea who the dad maybe?

No, I think he just thinks it is a random bloke, I don't think he does at all.

Why doesn’t he push Leanne to tell him?

Nick is absolutely happy to know that it is just some random, someone he will never meet. What worries him the most is that he does all this and then five, ten years time, someone pops up and goes, “I am the dad.”

Nick doesn’t want those complications so I don’t think he's that bothered to press Leanne about who the father is.

Is Leanne the love of Nick’s life? Does Nick see this as a new beginning for them?

Nick and Leanne always have been first loves but in soap it never runs smooth. This is a new beginning for them because after he realised the amount of deceit that was in his relationship with Carla, he realised that Leanne has always been there for him.

What is Nick’s reaction when Leanne tells Nick who the baby’s biological father is? Why do you think she tells him?

I think Leanne is annoyed with Steve so it’s almost to get back at Steve, a bit like, “Right, you didn’t want anyone to know, you just wanted to brush it under the carpet, so I am going to tell Nick.”

Nick can't believe it’s Steve for a start. But then he thinks this is very complicated now; Nick’s known Steve his whole of his life and he lives across the street. This is difficult now. This changes things.

Is Nick especially upset to learn that Leanne slept with Steve on the night Nick declared his love for her?

No, I don’t think so. Nick has got to be a bit careful of suddenly becoming incredibly moralistic when he just nearly got married! Leanne is a single girl and regardless of whether Nick says he loves her or not, he doesn’t own her.

I think he is a bit more incredulous that the father is Steve. Why would you pick Steve?

Why does Nick go and see Steve? What is his plan?

Nick’s plan is to scare Steve. He wants to find out what Steve’s intentions are and when he discovers that Steve has no interest in Leanne or the baby, Nick has to make sure that Steve has no interest for the rest of his life. He wants Steve to almost forget, go away and be scared about ever bringing up the child. Perfect.

Doesn’t he believe Steve when Steve say she wants nothing to do with Leanne’s baby?

Nick says that he does believe Steve, but who knows where you go to in a few years time? Nick has to find a bit of a lever to make sure that Steve won’t change his mind in the future because he only has to see the baby and suddenly it all changes…

Nick want’s Steve and Michelle to move away and says if they won’t, then he’ll text Michelle and tell her the truth about Leanne’s baby - is this an empty threat?

No, I don’t think it is an empty threat, Nick is quite happy to tell Michelle.

This is the difference in Nick now: He’s gone through so much with his brain injury and his brother, he’s changed so much as a character that he hasn't got that much to lose. Nick hasn’t got his business as Robert has taken a bit of it off him, Carla wrecked his life and so I think he’s a bit like, “Well Steve, if you want to push me to the edge then you’ll get it, of course I will say this to Michelle.”

This change in Nick has been happening for a while. After the Carla stuff he doesn’t really trust anyone, a bit like his brother.

Will he ever be able to get over the fact that Steve is the baby’s birth dad? Is Nick tempted to walk away from Leanne because of it?

Nick may be able to get over this fact just because of what has happened with Simon with Simon being Peter’s kid. If Steve is going to keep out of the way then he will have no problems and he will be the child’s dad but it is more a case of whether Steve will be keeping out of the way…

Might this news cause Nick’s brain problems to erupt again?

It’s a stressful situation but it's not like the wedding or the business, this is something that Nick is in and he is choosing to be in. He could walk away from Leanne, he could walk away from the baby.

The stress of when he feels he can’t walk away, when he’s trapped by it, that’s when it edges into his brain injury and continual stress. But he is happy with Leanne, much happier that he was with Carla. He’s aware of what a lot of stress does to him, when it overwhelms him, that’s when it all goes a bit pear-shaped.

  • Cast Interview

Sally's Deal With The Devil

We asked Sally Dynevor whether Sally will be taken in by Phelan's silver tongue?

What does Sally make of Phelan?

She likes the fact that Phelan talks to her like a councillor and takes her very seriously, she thinks. She thinks he is quite intelligent and knows what he is talking about and seems to like her as a councillor so he must be ok. Some of the other residents are a bit sniffy about her but he massages her ego.

What do his development plans involve?

He has been telling her that he is going to develop an old building to build the apartments and sell them on but Todd has said that she needs to be careful as people won’t want the building to be developed as they will want it to stay as a meeting place.

Sally knows she has to be careful that there are stipulations in the contract that he has to adhere. But then he says he is going to build some of the apartments for people with learning difficulties.

Why does she with draw her support from his development project?

Basically the council veto it and say they are important meeting places and she is going to upset her constituents. She was elected in by them and she can’t just go ahead with supporting something they may disagree on. She is worried she may lose her seat so she is a bit thrown by that. She is a bit naive really.

How does Phelan try to win her over?

Very cleverly he brings Alex round to Sally’s house and uses him as an example of someone who could benefit from the housing. She thinks if she goes back to the committee and explains this then she may get brownie points.

What makes her consider changing her mind?

She really does want to be looked up to and be a good councillor, she has principles and she really wants to do the right thing she just doesn’t have the experience. She has a good heart and a conscience and she wants to be liked, she thinks this might help with that.

Why does Tim not trust Phelan?

He can see through him, I’m not quite sure why but he is a bit more savvy than Sally and she thinks she is cleverer than Tim because he is ‘only a window cleaner ‘ and she has been in lots of meetings and read up on it all.

She is very disparaging about him! He is probably ten times cleverer than she will ever be and far more worldly wise. He knows people like Phelan.

Why does Sally not share his suspicions?

Basically because Phelan is very clever and knows how to play people. He has her wrapped around his little finger. Sally is completely taken in and thinks he takes her seriously. She thinks he really believes she will be able to do something for him

Are you surprised that Sally trusts him?

Not at all I think that is exactly how she would react, I like the fact that she trusts him.

Are you enjoying playing Councillor Sally?

I love it, it’s great it is another side to her. It goes with all the snobbery and it is so different from what Tim does. I like the fact that she is still working in Underworld as well as being a councillor.

She also has a new councillor wardrobe that can be a bit over the top but she thinks she should have a certain look as a councillor.

Has it been nice working with Connor McIntyre?

Fantastic. I am really enjoying working with him. He thinks about things a lot and works them out. He is a brilliant villain, he is the sort of villain who could be around for a while, he is very clever and I hope he stays around.

I was surprised but pleased that Sally got involved with him because of course he would use her position for his own gain.

Have you enjoyed the relationship between Sally and Yasmeen?

I love working with Shelley, we are good friends and I think Yasmeen is great. I do hope with have more stuff together. They have more in common than they realise. There is a scene coming up where they open up a bit to each other and there is a kind of coming together of these two characters so I hope that develops.

They are at loggerheads but they can recognise something in each other. Playing the councillor means that I get to work with lots of different people which is great!

  • Cast Interview

Bethany's Diet Pill Danger

Bethany's bully pushes her to do something drastic. We asked Lucy Fallon if anyone can help Bethany in her hour of need?

Why has Bethany become concerned about her weight?

It’s because of the bullies, she’s receiving texts from several girls at her school saying that she’s fat, so it’s made her really self-conscious and this is what’s made her determined to lose weight.

How does Bethany feel when the garden swing collapses with her in it?

She feels horrible, especially because Craig takes a picture of her while she’s on the swing when it breaks, he puts it on a social media website so everybody sees it, so Bethany is absolutely mortified because she already feels really self conscious anyway because of the bullying, so that just makes it worse and heightens it.

Why has she ordered the diet pills? And how much does she know about them?

I don’t think she really knows a lot about them, she knows that they are illegal and that she shouldn’t be taking them, and because she’s not eating either, she knows that it’s really not good for her.

I think she ordered them just to sort of make the process faster and lose the weight quicker, because she’s going to the gym quite a lot, so I think she just thinks that it’ll really help her to shed weight quickly.

Why is she being so secretive about the pills?

It’s because she knows how bad they are, so she doesn’t want her mum to find out because of everything that she’s gone through already. Aswell as everything the whole family is going through with Kylie’s death, she thinks that if they know she’s taking diet pills they’ll think there’s something really wrong with her, so she wants to keep it to herself.

Is she worried after she passes out at the gym?

Yes, I think it does worry her a little bit because she obviously knows that she’s not eating and she’s taking these pills, on top of really pushing herself at the gym, so it’s obvious to her that something is wrong. But I don’t think it worries her enough for her to want to stop doing it, because she’s quite young, she’s so fixated on the fact that she’s over weight, so it doesn’t worry her too much.

How does she feel when Gary finds the pills?

She’s going to be really worried that Gary’s found the pills because she doesn’t want him to tell anybody. She doesn’t want him to tell her mum or any of her family, so that they don’t worry.

What is she thinking when Gary suggests they report the bullies to the school?

She doesn’t want to do that at all, because she doesn’t want to make it worse, she doesn’t want to report the bullies and then for Lauren to keep bullying her because of it, she thinks it’s just going to make it even worse, so she really tries to persuade him not to do that, but he does it anyway.

Does she think by losing the weight that the bullying will stop?

Well at first, it wasn’t really about her weight, it was because she was new at the school and she didn’t really have any friends. They were bullying her for different reasons and then they started to fixate on her weight. I don’t think she thinks that the bullying will stop, but she will feel better about herself if she doesn’t feel like she’s fat.

Why is she so keen to keep the bullying hidden from Sarah?

Well, Sarah’s just come out of hospital and if she tells her that she’s still getting bullied and that it’s got even worse, that it’s got physical,she’s worried her mum will just lose the plot again and end up back in hospital, so she just wants to keep it from her while her mum get’s better.

I hope that girls watching realise that just because someone bullies you about something, doesn’t make it true.

– Lucy Fallon

What are you hoping that teenage girl viewers will take from Bethany’s body issues?

I hope that girls watching realise that just because someone bullies you about something, doesn’t make it true, I know that really I’m not overweight, and I hope that they see that bullies just say cruel things to bait people and to be nasty.

They’ll probably realise that what Bethany is doing is stupid, and it will show them how serious taking diet pills and not eating can be.

Have you had many fans get in touch with you about the bullying story?

Yes, I’ve had quite a lot of tweets about it, people telling me they have been in similar situations and that the storyline has helped them want to tell somebody so that’s really nice to hear. And there was a girl who came into work yesterday to look around the set and she was telling me about how she had been bullied in the past and that watching the storyline develop made her upset, but she was glad that we’re highlighting just how bad bullying can be, and luckily she told her parents what was happening and she doesn’t get bullied anymore.

Are you glad to see Bethany stand up for herself and punch Lauren?

Yes, definitely. And I think that Lauren deserves it,although it doesn’t really make things better for her, in fact if anything it makes it worse.

Do you think that Bethany regrets doing it?

Yes, as soon as she does it she regrets it, but it was just her instinct, it was her initial reaction to just punch her, and then as soon as she did it she felt so guilty and she was really worried about what the consequences would be because of that.

Do you get on well with Shannon who plays Lauren?

Yes, I get on really well with her. She’s really lovely and because she’s the same age as me as well, we’ve got quite a lot in common, and she’s really easy to get on with.

What about the rest of the cast?

I am really good friends with Colson, if we are free in between scenes we will often go for a drive somewhere and get some food, he’s like my brother.

  • Cast Interview