Sharon Hor­gan, 47, who co-wrote the very ex­cel­lent Mother­land on BBC2, which is back for a full se­ries fol­low­ing last year’s pi­lot suc­cess…

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Mother­land is a M (brilliant) sit­com all about nav­i­gat­ing the tri­als and trau­mas of mid­dle-class par­ent­hood… The BBC told us it was OK to show bad moth­er­ing on screen, and that it would be funny! I’ve been asked, “What about Father­land?” but, gen­er­ally, un­for­tu­nately it’s still an area pop­u­lated by women. Al­though we all moan about the fact that there aren’t enough dads on the school run, and when they do show up we’re like, “What the f*** do you want?!” The com­edy sur­rounds the “tribe” of Ju­lia [played by Anna Maxwell Martin], Liz [Diane Mor­gan] and Kevin [Paul Ready], ver­sus the “al­pha mums”… It’s kind of like a school sit­u­a­tion where you’ve got the “cool gang” and you need to find your tribe. Our tribe have found each other, and they can’t get in with the more suc­cess­ful mums. It’s nerds ver­sus jocks. You have two daugh­ters; did you find your “tribe” with the mums at school? I was as ner­vous turn­ing up for my kids’ first day as I was for my own first day at school. But then you find your “tribe”, and two of the best friends I have are the mums that I found. How is the school drop-off for you? I’m scared to drop off! The day af­ter the [Mother­land] pi­lot came out [in Septem­ber 2016] I went scur­ry­ing in un­der a cloak of dark­ness, and then I re­mem­bered I wasn’t in it and no one was go­ing to as­so­ciate me with it any way. Since then – be­cause I told them that I’d co-writ­ten it – some mums specif­i­cally think some sto­ry­lines are about them. They all want to be Liz. I’d love to be a Liz, but I’m def­i­nitely a Ju­lia… Is Mother­land quite close to your own life? Well, re­cently it was the au­tumn party at my daugh­ter’s school and a mum texted me go­ing, “I’m on the door, so if you want I can drop your kid back at your house after­wards.” I was go­ing, “Could you go one bet­ter? Can they stay over?” I think, just push your luck. But al­ways pay back. Keep it in the bank and then it will work out.

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