ONE of the joys of this job is being able to talk to young actors and follow them as they become famous faces.
Marple-raised Kaye Wragg first came to notice in 1997 as Lucy in The Lakes and I’ve interviewed her many times since as her career has progressed.
The former Salford University student revealed early on how she had beaten a serious liver illness which, as a teenager, left her skin bright yellow and forced her to take two years off school.
She’s since gone on to compile an impressive TV CV, including In A Land Of Plenty, The Sins and No Angels. Earlier this summer she joined the regular cast of ITV1’s The Bill and appears on screen for the first time next week.
You can read today’s MEN TV feature here. But London-based Kaye had a lot more to say about her new job and her latest character, Pc Diane Noble. “She’s not Manc or Cheshire but general northern, from a working class family. You might think she’s a cold fish at first,” she told me.
Diane doesn’t have any time for Sergeant Nikki Wright, played by Gillian Taylforth. “We did our first scenes together last week and it was great fun,” Kaye explained. “To be horrible to each other and we just ended up laughing. It took a while to get used to just being nasty to someone straight away.
“Gillian is one of the first actresses that I remember taking note of when I was a child. I was 11 when EastEnders started and we moved from Manchester to Kent and I remember it being massive down here, whereas up north it was always Coronation Street.
“I ended up getting into EastEnders and I used to love watching Gillian play Kathy. I’d always wanted to act but I remember watching her and thinking, ‘She’s brilliant.’ I haven’t told her that yet, but I will. So I’ve never worked with her and yet I remember that from being 11.”
Kaye has already filmed action scenes in The Bill. “I love it but I wasn’t prepared for it. Every job you do, it’s not real, it’s always faked and it’s always done with a stunt person. And I’ve always tried to do my own stunts, unless the producer won’t let you for some reason.
“This time I had to jump out of a car, run, grab a guy, throw him on the floor and arrest him. It doesn’t sound much, but when you’re doing it again and again and again…
“I felt fine all day, but the next day I got to get out of bed and couldn’t move. My legs were so sore and I was covered in bruises. I’d literally been there about three days and I thought, ‘In two years I’m going to be a mess.’ I was a bit shocked. All the regulars look at you and they have this little smirk on their face, because they’ve all been through it.”