EastEnders’ new girl Lisa Hammond: ‘People will hate me!’

EastEnders’ newcomer Lisa Hammond has admitted her first time in the Queen Vic was a nerve-wracking experience.

The wheelchair-bound actress – who has previously appeared in Bleak House and Psychoville – plays feisty stall holder Donna Yates, who clashes with Kat Moon and Bianca Jackson on the market.

“My first time in the Queen Vic was a big moment,” says Lisa. “There’s something about the Vic set that makes you feel like you’re not really acting, and then it dawns on you that what you’re saying will be seen by millions of people!”

She added: “My first scene was Donna looking at all the stalls on Bridge Street market, before going on to encounter Kat and Bianca.

“As I got closer, I remember feeling nervous, but it wasn’t as bad as I thought it’d be.”

Lisa, who has been acting since she was 13 and was also in Grange Hill, revealed she had to get to grips with playing such a stroppy character.

She said: “It was hard to launch into being such a fiery person.

“Once I settled in I thought, ‘This is fun, people will hate me!’.

“Initially, Donna is very opinionated. But there is a humorous side to her. I don’t want her to just be a hard-faced cow. There needs to be a glint in her eye, tinged with a bit of sarcasm.”

Opinionated? Hard-faced? Donna’s going to fit right in…

Donna first appears in EastEnders on Monday, April 14

– Press Association