Hollyoaks actress Bronagh Waugh has landed a role in new BBC thriller The Fall.

The soap star – who plays feisty student Cheryl Brady in the Channel 4 show – will be showing her serious side in the drama playing Sally-Ann Spector, the unsuspecting wife of serial killer Paul Spector (played by Jamie Dornan).

Gillian Anderson, of The X Files fame, will star as murder investigator DSI Gibson.

Bronagh said: “I am so thrilled and honoured to have been given this opportunity by the BBC. It is such a challenging and demanding role that I feel will really stretch me and explore my range.

“Allan Cubitt’s script is the kind that actors can only dream of and to be involved with such an esteemed cast and creative team is a definite career high for me.”

The 29-year-old actress will continue to play happy-go-lucky Cheryl in Hollyoaks, and will juggle filming the five-part TV crime series in Belfast with shooting the soap.

She said: “I’m so lucky to have such an understanding boss at Hollyoaks. Emma Smithwick, our executive producer, was so supportive and did everything in her power to enable me to do both.

“She knew what an amazing opportunity it was for me. It’s been tough – working seven days a week and flying back and forth between Belfast and Liverpool – but I absolutely love it!”