What do you have planned for Christmas 2011?
“This time I’m at my parents’ house in the Lakes – we take it in turns each year either at my house or my parents – this year it’s at my parents’ house. It’s going to mean loads of lying on the sofa, lots of eating chocolate, loads of booze and eating turkey – that’s free range organic turkey of course!”
Is there any one Christmas that stands out in your memory? Why?
“No, because luckily all my Christmases have been so lovely. I love Christmas and I really go to town on it, especially now I’ve got Otis it’s even better, you get extra pleasure from watching them enjoy it.”
What’s a typical Christmas day for you?
“The same as hundreds and thousands of people; waking up in the morning opening presents, then lying around drinking and eating, having a laugh and maybe playing some Christmas games like What’s on the Tray, which we always play. You put things on a tray, you have a minute to remember what’s there then a towel goes on and you have to write down what can you remember. Just silly games like that.”
What kind of Christmas celebration do you have with your co-stars?
“We basically start filming in Christmas in October, so by the time it comes you’ve already had Christmas day with your soap family where you sit round the table at the Barlows eating your dinner. Then we have a big cast and crew part which is always a laugh.”
Do you have to work over the Christmas/New Year period?
“No, we have two weeks off over Christmas which means the weeks before Christmas are really busy because we pack more work in in order to have those two weeks off. But it is lovely once you get to the day when your holiday starts and you can totally relax for two weeks.”
What TV do you enjoy most over Christmas?
“I love the Royle Family Christmas special, but apparently that’s not in this year sadly. Otis will be watching The Snowman no doubt and numerous Disney DVDs, which I’m sure he’s going to get for his Christmas presents. I love all the comedy and all the classics, It’s a Wonderful Life is always good to put on in the week leading up to Christmas.”