Sarah Lancashire to star in BBC costume drama

Sarah Lancashire will star in a new BBC department store drama expected to rival ITV series Mr Selfridge.

The 47-year-old, who played Coronation Street favourite Raquel Watts, will star in BBC1’s The Paradise, a love story set in the 1890s around the opening of the first department store in the North East, reports the Mirror.

The show could apparently be screening early next year on Sunday nights, as will Mr Selfridge, which stars another ex-Corrie star, Katherine Kelly.

The Paradise, based on the Emile Zola novel Au Bonheur Des Dames, is described as an eight-part, rags-to-riches tale. It will also star newcomer Joanna Vanderham, Trial And Retribution’s David Hayman and Fingersmith’s Elaine Cassidy.

Sarah will play Miss Audrey, a firm-but-fair character who oversees ladieswear.

In Mr Selfridge, Entourage actor Jeremy Piven will play Harry Gordon Selfridge, the flamboyant and visionary US entrepreneur known as the Earl of Oxford Street.

Katherine, who starred as Becky McDonald in Coronation Street until earlier this year, has been cast as the alluring socialite Lady Mae.