North East UK news What happened to 'forgotten' but iconic Geordie TV stars PremierLeague-News.Com
PremierLeague-News.Com - The North East has spawned some fantastic acting talent over the years, some who don't always get the credit they deserve
PremierLeague-News.Com - Breaking Sport Transfer News ! From Byker Grove to Auf, Wiedersehen Pet and Our Friends in the North to Spender, there have been some classic TV shows full of North East actors over the years. We know that Geordie is obviously the best accent anywhere in the world and millions of viewers would tend to agree as any TV drama, soap or talent show knows, you just have to have a Geordie on board somewhere. The region has also had a great track record on TV talent shows as well, with X Factor wins for the likes of Little Mix and Joe McElderry, I'm A Celebrity victories for Vicky Pattison and Scarlett Moffatt, Anthony Hutton on Big Brother and, of course, Cheryl bagging a spot in Girls Aloud on Popstars: The Rivals. The best bank holiday deals and discounts B&Q - Get £10 off when you spend £10 online at B&Q over bank holiday weekend. Currys PC World - Epic Bank Holiday sale featuring 40% off laptops, coffee machines, vacuum cleaners and more. Argos - £50 off TVs as part of the bank holiday weekend sale Amazon - Bank holiday sale on Fitbits, toys, trainers and smart home devices This article contains affiliate links, we may receive a commission on any sales we generate from it.Learn more The likes of Ant & Dec, Denise Welch, Robson Green, Jill Halfpenny and Jimmy Nail have gone onto be household names thanks to their small screen fame, but for the purposes of this article, we're going to turn the spotlight onto some of the people and characters you don't always get the credit they deserve. Spuggy from Byker Grove - Lyndyann Barrass Lyndyann Barras aka Spuggy in her Byker Grove days 'Not a Geordie' we hear you cry! And you'd be right but when it comes to iconic TV characters from Tyneside-set shows, you can't ignore Spuggy from Byker Grove. One of the stars of Byker Grove's early series, young Sunderland actress Lyndyann became an instant teatime TV star. Since leaving her Grove days behind after six series, the now 44-year-old appeared on stage in local amateur productions of Annie Get Your Gun and High Society. Lyndyann Barrass at Byker Groves 25 year anniversary. She still lists herself as an actress as well as a businesswoman on Twitter and Instagram. She’s also a mam-of-two and her recent appearance on a child star special of BBC quiz show Pointless delighted viewers. Brenda from Auf, Wiedersehen Pet - Julia Tobin Kevin Whately, Julia Tobin and Brendan Healy on stage performing a hilarious Colditz take on Auf Wiedersehen Pet After Brenda's name was first mentioned in the very first episode of the classic show in 1983, Julia went on to appear in each subsequent series of the show, right up to its final farewell in 2004. Her acting credits also include The Bill and Spender and the now 66-year-old is one of the Sunday for Sammy stalwarts, regularly making an appearance in the two yearly Geordie entertainment extravaganza. Chronicle Live Newcastle Loves awards night at the Riverside, Newcastle, Actress Julia Tobin with the best pub winner The Bridge tavern She also presented the Best Pub Award at the Chronicle Newcastle Loves awards in 2019. Aaron 'The Train Driver' Bayley, Pop Idol Yes, while, when asked about the first series of Pop Idol in 2002, most people will remember the battle between Will Young and Gareth Gates for victory, the North East had two singers in the .live shows. Zoe Birkett was the highest finishing female contestant after placing 4th and then there was singing train driver Aaron. Aaron Bayley has toured with a band performing Glee songs The show's very own 'cheeky chappy', Aaron was most famous for his well received cover of Walking in Memphis and was voted out far too early in the live shows. Aaron released debut single I Didn't Plan to Love You in the summer of 2005 and then in 2011, nine years after his TV fame, released album Guardian Angel, with its cover shot at the Angel of the North. He joined fellow singers Andy Scott-Lee, Stacey McClean, Rikki Loney and Kavana in supergroup G*Mania, who went on tour performing Glee songs and is now the frontman of The Aaron Bayley Band, one of the North East's most sought after wedding acts. Donna from Soldier, Soldier - Rosie Rowell The Heaton-raised actress played Robson Green's on-screen other half in Soldier, Soldier, the ITV drama that spawned Robson & Jerome's music career. (Image: Carlton) The former Heaton Manor pupil played Donna Tucker in the show in the mid-90s, before going onto land parts in The Bill, Where The Heart Is and Dalziel & Pascoe Rosie also starred as Eileen Callan in Channel 5 soap Family Affairs, while most recent acting credits include The Bill, Casualty and narrating documentary series Dispatches. Geoff from Byker Grove - Billy Fane Nothing could go on at the Grove, without it being under the watchful eye of youth leader Geoff.
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. Billy, now 74, appeared in countless pantomimes across the region as well as in Heartbeat. He is perhaps best known for appearing in North East films Billy Elliot and Purely Belter.
Jamie Bell and Billy Fane in Billy Elliot
(Image: BBC Films/Tiger Aspect)
In other news. he graduated with a postgraduate course in Education and Educational Special Needs from Hull University. Rodney from Auf, Wiedersehen Pet - Barry Hollinshead
Rod, played by Barry Hollinshead, and screen dad, Oz, in a scene from Auf Wiedershen, Pet filmed in North Shields, 1986
Young Walker actor Barry made his Auf, Wiedersehen Pet back in the show's second series in 1986 a s Oz's estranged 10-year-old son, Rodney. The now married father-of-two went onto do some theatre work, before going into the Armed Forces.
Barry Hollinshead, from Whitley Bay, today. In 1986, he appeared as Rod, Oz's son in Auf Wiedereshen, Pet
(Image: Barry Hollinshead)
He now lives in Whitley Bay and works in quality control. Donna from Footballers' Wives - Katherine Monoghan Back in the early 00s, the UK basically got its own version of Dallas when ITV launched Footballers' Wives, which centered on the on and off field antics of the players of fictional Premiership team Earls Park.
Katharine Monaghan with on screen husband Nathan Constance
One of its stars players was Ian Walmsley and Newcastle-born actress Katherine played his wife and mother-of-two Donna. Dubbed 'plain jane' more glamorous WAG rivals like Tanya Turner, Donna shocked everyone by having an affair with Ian's team mate Salvatori Biagi, before she decided she was still in love with Ian and walked off into the sunset with him as he quit the team. Katherine has also appeared in Judge John Deed and short-lived BBC Tyneside-shot drama 55 Degrees North. As well as doing voice over, she has also appeared on stage at the Live Theatre in Newcastle. Sewell from Purely Belter - Greg McLane While not strictly a TV show, Purely Belter is a film that has been on many Geordies' TV sets many a time.
A scene from the film Purely Belter
(Image: Film Four)
Released in 2000, it followed two lads' quest to be the owners of Newcastle United season tickets. Best mate of Gerry, played by Chris Beattie, Sewell was played by a then 17-year-old Greg, with the role landing him a British Independent Film Award nomination for Best Newcomer. While the film became an instant cult hit, Greg went straight back to his job selling electrical goods in Comet. The Purely Belter cast got back together for a reunion a few years ago but Greg didn't take part in the filming of it. Debbie from Byker Grove - Nicola Bell
Nicola (second left) with Jill and other castmates at the 10th anniversary
Nicola's character Debbie Dobson broke both PJ and Duncan’s hearts on various occasions, not to mention unintentionally blinding PJ during a paintball match - altogether now "HE CAN'T SEE MAN!" After starring in an episode of Kavanagh QC in 1995, the acting dried up and Nicola got work as a flight attendant for Virgin Atlantic.
She is now a very happy mum, make up artist and qualified personal trainer. Michelle Bass, Big Brother
After causing no end of entertainment and drama in the Big Brother house in 2004, particularly when she tried to woo her 'Chicken Stu' and belt out a very unique version of Pie Jesu, the former Gosforth High student dabbled with singing outside of the house, recording dance track Must Be The Music in 2006. She appeared on Celebrity Weakest Link, contributed Big Brother columns to OK! magazine and News of the World and played a small role in the film I Want Candy.
In 2010, Michelle was a contestant on Ultimate Big Brother being eliminated from the house at the semi final stage. That same year Michelle married hypnotist Steve McKeown and in July 2013 they welcomed a baby girl.
He was Oz's son in Auf Wiedersehen, Pet - but what happened to the lad who played Rod?
Our Friends In The North: It's 25 years since the TV classic set on Tyneside first aired
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