What made you want to be involved in Sandylands?
I loved the script. It's so beautifully detailed. All the characters are brilliantly drawn. It was also very different to everything else I was reading and Tina seemed like a legend, so it was an instant massive yes from me.
What was your reaction when you saw the cast-list?
I walked into the read-through and I nearly fell over! It's such an incredible cast - they're all people I've admired for a long time. I was utterly astonished that I had the opportunity to work with them. It was a lovely gang. There was lots of laughing on and off set. I made some great friends.
What was it like acting with this stellar cast?
Amazing! Sometimes I'd be doing a scene and thinking, "Sorry, is this actually real?" It was a total masterclass. It was a joy to learn from them and to socialise with them. A great thing about working away from home is that you bond with each other very quickly.
What defines Tina?
She's the best friend everyone needs, but doesn't necessarily want! When I read the first script, I thought she needed to be warm, fearless and not very self-aware. She gets up to some outrageous things, but in my opinion, just the right amount.
Would you enjoy being like Tina in real life?
Yes, I think she's a little bit of who I wish I were! I'll save some of the good bits for me and discard some of the crude bits!
How does Tina get on with Emily?
She's a great stooge for Emily. They work brilliantly together. It's a bit of a Saffy and Eddy situation. Over the episodes it's a joy to see Emily loosening up, but also to see Tina's heart and her genuine love for Emily.
Can you enlighten us about your off-screen friendship with Natalie?
I adore Natalie, and I think it probably translates onto the screen. That relationship is key to the story. You need that heart and the warmth as well as the outrageous stuff. Nat's the actual best. We were so lucky that we instantly became obsessed with each other. She's become a great friend. I hope we get to do more together because it's a very happy marriage.
How do Brits view the seaside?
We love it, don't we? I've just been to Scarborough and had a great time. There is something very nostalgic about the seaside - we all holidayed there as kids. Being there now takes you back to that place of wholesome fun. The beaches are beautiful spots, and it's great that they're currently having a resurgence. Putting those places on TV can only be a good thing. I reckon we all have a place in our hearts for the seaside.
Do you think the signs are positive for a second series of Sandylands?
Everybody has their fingers crossed. Sandylands is a little jewel. The characters have massive potential. The writers have so much more to offer and are an absolute joy to work with. I hope we get to see more of what's in their brains.
Do you think people will relate to the show?
I hope it'll give people a warm, fuzzy feeling. That close-knit feeling is something we could all do with more of right now. I come from a village in the Lake District, and I love the intricacies of that sort of community. Everyone knows everyone, but they're protective of each other as well. That's very special and should be celebrated.
What do you hope the audience response will be to Sandylands?
If viewers have half as good a time watching it as we did making it, we're on to a belter.