From page 6 get caught in unrealistic nonsense. The reason she’s so good at her job is because she’s clear, thoughtful and smart.”
For all her professionalism, however, Paula is instantly attracted to Sophie.
Gallacher, who appeared opposite Ricky Gervais in his stand-up show Animals and as Jennifer Taylor-Clarke in two series of The Office, explains that, “Paula is aware of Sophie immediately.
“She is fascinated by her and she catches her eye. Then Sophie has a couple of wise words to say and Paula finds Sophie’s maturity and common sense very attractive.”
The actress assesses what Sophie makes of Paula’s declaration that she is interested.
“From Paula’s point of view, she’s aware that Sophie’s aware. There’s a nice little flirtation where they’re both toying with the idea of being involved with each other. Sophie makes the decision that this is going to happen.”
At that moment, Paula has to weigh up the professional risks of starting such a relationship.
According to Gallacher, who played the characters of the Prime Minister’s wife and Margaret, Roy’s wife, in Little Britain, “Paula has to think about whether or not she’s willing to risk her working relationship because it’s not a sensible move to get involved with someone’s daughter when you’re representing them in such a way.” For all that, Gallacher believes Paula is not concerned about Sally’s reaction to their relationship. “Paula thinks that she can handle most things. She pretty much talks her way around things and isn’t scared of consequences. But it’s Sally’s emotional response which would have to be dealt with. But nothing bad has happened – it’s just a poorly timed relationship.” Nor does Gallacher imagine that if Sally got wind of the relationship it would cause a major falling-out between her and Paula. The actress, who has two children, reflects that, “If and when Sally finds out about the relationship, there might be a bit of a frisson there. “But I’d imagine Paula would be able to work it so that they remained friends. I’d love it if Sally and Paula would hang out a bit more.” Finally, does Gallacher reckon that Paula and Sophie could live happily ever after? “That’s the fascinating thing. I would very much enjoy seeing how that could work because the age gap obviously is at least 20 years. But I think they could if they could both embrace each other’s choices and age. “There are lots of avenues for them to overcome if they properly love each other.” Watch this space.
Sophie Webster (Brooke Vincent)