Gemma Atkinson talks to TV Times magazine about her very different role in Casualty

How is paramedic Tamzin different to your Hollyoaks character Lisa Hunter?
“I think Tamzin’s a lot more clued up in life than Lisa. She’s a lot older and wiser, but she’s still got the girl-next-door charm that Lisa had, which is great.”

How did the role come about?
“I did a workshop with the BBC, where I sat down with producers and directors and they asked me if I were to join Casualty, what sort of character I would like to play. I thought the obvious choice would have been a nurse, so I suggested a paramedic as I thought that it would be something a bit different. They kind of built the character around what we’d discussed in the workshop. They went away and then they called me a few weeks later and said that they’d like to write me into the series!”

Are you a fan of the show?
“Ever since childhood. My mum and dad would watch Casualty, and I used to stay up and watch it with them, so it was quite surreal walking on the set. And I was quite star-struck when I saw Charlie because obviously he is the show. But everyone was really nice, and it was really great because half of the crew used to work on Hollyoaks. It was nice to see a few old faces.”

Is Tamzin made as welcome?
“I think at first everyone really likes her. She’s very caring, but she also wants to do her best by everyone. Well everyone except fellow paramedic Jeff. He has an A-Team mug. It’s his favourite mug – a family heirloom – and Tamzin accidentally breaks it. But later in the episode, she kind of redeems herself.”

Have you had any problems on set?
“Only with the trolleys. It doesn’t sound hard to walk and talk with a trolley, but it is! I caught a few people’s ankles on my first trolley dash.”

What about all the blood?
“Do you know what? Weirdly, I’m fine with all of that – it doesn’t really bother me. And in a real emergency, I think I’d be all right.”