Stead­man stroke role heartache

The People - - NEWS FEATURES - By Karen Rockett

VET­ERAN ac­tress Al­i­son Stead­man has told of her own heart­break be­hind the BBC1 drama Care.

She plays stroke vic­tim Mary, with her Gavin & Stacey co-star Sher­dian Smith as daugh­ter Jenny.

One of Al­i­son’s old­est friends had a stroke as they started mak­ing Care, air­ing at 9pm tonight.

Award-win­ning Al­i­son, 72, said: “I vis­ited her in a stroke ward, not for re­search, but be­cause she was my friend. I talked to her but she couldn’t speak.

“When you’ve known some­one who’s chatty and full of opin­ions, then sud­denly they can’t say yes or no, that’s hard.

“She’d bow her head be­cause she was about to cry, then she’d pull her­self to­gether and sit up again. It was so painful to see.”

In the 90-minute drama, Mary can’t care for her­self af­ter the stroke and sin­gle mum Jenny is un­able to rely on her for child­care.

Al­i­son told a mag­a­zine: “Over the past 12 months I’ve got a lit­tle creakier.

“But do­ing this job makes me ap­pre­ci­ate that at the end of the day I can get dressed, put on my lip­stick and go and have a gin and tonic. Some peo­ple aren’t so lucky.”

DRAMA: Stead­man in Care

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