Katherine Parkinson has signed up to star in new BBC comedy The Kennedys, based on the memoirs of writer and TV presenter Emma Kennedy.

The IT Crowd actress will play mother Brenda Kennedy in the new six-part sitcom, with Shooting Stars funnyman Dan Skinner playing her husband Tony.

Loosely based on Emma’s memoirs The Tent, The Bucket And Me, the show will be set in the 1970s when the Kennedy family move to a new estate in Stevenage and start organising activities to get in with the local community.

Emma won Celebrity MasterChef in 2012 (Emilie Fjola Sandy/Shine TV/BBC)



Emma Kennedy won Celebrity MasterChef in 2012 (Emilie Fjola Sandy/Shine TV/BBC)

 

Former Celebrity MasterChef winner and regular TV show panellist Emma said of the comedy: “I grew up on a council estate when they were places of aspirational wonder.

“Social housing was simply the greatest start in life a young family could have, and in The Kennedys I hope I have delivered a series that reflects that hope and joy. It’s been a sharp thrill from start to finish.”

 

Each episode will be introduced by a young Emma Kennedy (Lucy Hutchison), a 10-year-old Star Wars obsessed tomboy.

The Kennedys also features the family’s best friends, unmarried couple Tim, played by Toast Of London’s Harry Peacock, and Jenny (Up the Women’s Emma Pierson).

Shola Adewusi and Clive Rowe will play the Kennedys’ unassuming neighbours, Dee and David.

The show has begun filming and will screen on BBC One later this year.