Hollyoaks star Nick Pickard has admitted he always expects to be axed from the show.

The 37-year-old, who plays entrepreneur Tony Hutchinson on the Channel 4 soap, revealed he feels ‘lucky’ to be the longest serving member of the cast, having appeared in the first episode in 1995.

“I first joined Hollyoaks when I was 19 years old and I’m now 37. Every year I expect it to end – hope it doesn’t – but expect that it could, and every year they keep asking me to stay for another year, so I’m very lucky,” he told K9 magazine.

“It’s a great buzz. I don’t know when I became one of the older cast members – I’m now on the over 25’s cast list section!”

As the only original cast member on the show, Nick has enjoyed his reunions with former co-stars such as Sarah Jayne Dunn (Mandy Richardson) and Gemma Bissix (Clare Devine).

“When the older characters come back – Sarah Jayne Dunn was back fairly recently and Gemma Bissix is here for a short time just now – it’s a lot of fun,” he said.

Nick said he still likes portraying his alter-ego: “Tony’s had some interesting times over the years. They do say they sometimes try to pick parts of your personality out to put into the character, but I think we’re so different, I don’t think there’s any similarities between us. He’s great to play.”

And he teased: “Tony’s got some really exciting times ahead but I can’t tell you about them yet.”