Hollyoaks newcomer Alex Fletcher has said she has “complete confidence” in the show’s producer Paul Marquess.

The actress, who will appear in the soap from August as Diane O’Connor, is one of several new cast members signed by Paul, with whom she worked on Brookside.

Paul is an amazing producer, and I’m not just saying this to get brownie points,” Alex said.

“He is the guy who did the live episode of The Bill and was the chief exec on Footballers’ Wives – he just knows how it works.”

She added “In my Brookside days, I did some of my best stuff with him so I have complete confidence in anything he does really. I’m looking forward to the year ahead and seeing where the character goes.”

Paul is currently overseeing a major shake-up at the soap, which is seeing several regular characters leave as well as new ones arriving.

“It’s nice to come in now as there are three new families so there’s a really good buzz about the place and it’s getting the show back to being a drama and storyline-led,” Alex said.

“I’m dead excited about it and I think it’s going to be an exciting year.”

Other newcomers to the show include Over The Rainbow finalist Stephanie Davis, who will star alongside Alex as Sinead O’Connor.