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Former X Factor finalist Diana Vickers says she always wanted to be an actress rather than a singer.

She appeared on X Factor in 2008, but is about to star in Comedy Central show Give Out Girls.

Diana explained: “I always had a plan to do acting. I remember when I was at school before I went on The X Factor it was such an ambition of mine. I was always in the career advisor’s office going, ‘I want to go to drama school. I don’t want to do my A-levels any more, I want to leave now!’

“And that was kind of my plan. And then I did The X Factor instead and it took me off track.”

Diana – who has appeared on the West End stage in Little Voice and had a few small film roles – has revealed how filming on her new TV show kept getting interrupted by members of the public asking for freebies.

The 23-year-old’s new comedy Give Out Girls is based on a team of promo girls who give out free samples to the public at stations, airports and shopping centres.

Diana revealed filming the show on location in the north west did not prove straightforward.

She laughed: “The characters we met in Bolton, they were absolutely hilarious. They literally had no fear. It was obviously a big set and everyone just thought we were actually promo girls and kept coming up and going ‘Eh, can I try some of that?’ and just wandering into the set.

“And I’m like ‘No! It’s not real, get out!’ Which was really funny.”

But the Lancashire-born star – who is now based in London – admitted she loved working close to home.

She said: “I am really proud. I feel like it’s kind of home, being able to see my mum a lot which is nice.”

Give Out Girls – which also stars Tracy-Ann Oberman, Kerry Howard, Cariad Lloyd, Ben Bailey Smith, aka comedian and rapper Doc Brown, Miranda Hennessy and Alex Carter – begins on Tuesday  October 14 on Comedy Central.