Casualty favourite Amanda Mealing reveals the hidden truth about Connie’s ordeal… PLUS plans for Connie's future!
In Saturday’s Casualty viewers will see tough talking clinical lead Connie Beauchamp reduced to a shadow of her former self.
While Connie (Casualty favourite Amanda Mealing) projects strong leadership qualities at work, privately she’s haunted by the brutal attack by an unknown assailant earlier this year.
When a familiar face turns up in the ED, Connie’s convinced he’s her attacker. Will she finally get the peace of mind she deserves?
Here Amanda Mealing explains more about the explosive reveals in this week’s Casualty….
What will viewers learn this week about the aftermath of the assault on Connie?
AM: “We find out that it’s the catalyst for completely reducing Connie to having these massive anxiety attacks. She has post-traumatic stress and has become agoraphobic and, of course, working in an emergency department… She hides it well, but eventually it gets noticed.”
How has she kept it to herself for so long?
AM: “In her inimitable way Connie has said everything is fine, there’s nothing to see here, and tried to carry on until now, down the line, when we find out who it was [that attacked her]… It’s very surprising!”
Bill Danes, the husband of a former patient is in the frame – what can you reveal?
AM: “Well, Connie always rubs people up the wrong way! This brings her into conflict with patients and their families, and maybe someone in particular…”
Can you remind us of Bill’s last appearance in the ED?
AM: “Before this the ED staff had a patient [Bill’s wife Naomi, played by EastEnders’ Anita Dobson] who was end-stage cancer. Bill had been striving for Naomi to keep fighting but her desire, backed by Connie’s defence of her wishes, was to let her go to sleep and not revive her.”
Whether Bill is or isn’t Connie’s attacker, will her anxiety issues continue?
AM: “Yes, and to see someone who is so strong struggle with anxiety, it’s an interesting aspect of her we’ve not really seen.”
Will Connie have any support at this difficult time?
AM: “She’ll keep it to herself – she always does! But Elle picks up on it and attempts to reach out to her. I think the idea of someone knowing about her vulnerability causes quite an adverse reaction for Connie, so even that has a knock on effect. The attack happens once, but Connie ends up living it much, much longer.”
And it’s sadly something that happens in real life…
AM: “Yes, it’s a really important story to highlight because there are physical attacks, there are emotional attacks, there are verbal, and cyber attacks now. We’re just highlighting the fact that the event may happen once but it can stay with you much longer. We have to start looking for care for people after these things, not just immediately after the event.”
Were you pleased to take Connie in this direction?
AM: “Yes, I was pleased to go with this. My whole thing is I want to get Connie back to the feisty, fiery character that she was. So we are going to use this to as an opportunity to reset her. It keeps it interesting. We’ve seen the softer, underside of Connie and that things do actually deeply affect her, but I’m worried that we have gone too far from the original Connie that everyone knew and loved. So we’ll use this to bring her back!”
Casualty continues on BBC1 this Saturday