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Vicky McClure

May 2015

The last time we saw Vicky McClure on screen was a brief glimpse during the BBC’s live coverage of the British Academy Television Awards.
The 32-year-old from Wollaton was there to, we all hoped, pick up her second Bafta, after winning Best Leading Actress four years ago for her reprised role as Lol in This Is England ‘88.
The only person confident that she wasn’t going to win was Vicky.
“I didn’t expect the nomination in the first place,” says the actress, who has also been seen in ITV’s Broadchurch alongside David Tennant.
The nod was for her role as DC Kate Fleming in Line Of Duty, the police drama that she is currently filming a third series for in Belfast.
As it turned out, she lost out on a second Bafta, this time for Best Supporting Actress, to Gemma Jones for her role in Marvellous, based on the true story of Stoke City kit-man Neil Baldwin.
“Marvellous was my favourite piece of TV last year so losing to Gemma was more than fine by me,” says Vicky, who was papped on the red carpet wearing a full length white dress by London-based designer Osman Yousefzada.
So busy was she before the ceremony last month, that it wasn’t a dress she had time to pick herself.
“My publisher is a good friend and he knows what I like so he got everything arranged,” she laughs.
Vicky was there with other members of the Line of Duty cast as the show, BBC2’s biggest ratings winner in ten years, was also up for Best Drama, while co-star Keeley Hawes was nominated in the Best Leading Actress category.
“It’s going really well,” she says of the filming that started in April and runs until July.
“The scripts are stronger than ever and there’s a really nice vibe on set. The new additions to the cast are incredible.”
Among them is fellow Nottingham actor Arsher Ali, who starred in The Missing and Arthur and George.
“It’s been great to have a Notts lad on set,” she says, although the pair’s allegiances to football clubs are on opposite sides of the Trent.
Was Forest fan Arsher, who grew up in Sherwood, kind about Notts County’s relegation?
“Nothing was really said,” laughs the Magpies fan.
“I think everyone was kind enough not to mention it.”
Having another Nottinghamian on set has helped ease Vicky’s longings to be back in her city.
“We’ve been chatting a lot about Notts, which has been great. We’ve filmed scenes together and we did try and get an ‘ey up mi duck’ into one of them,” she laughs.
“But that’ll probably be cut.”
There are rare breaks from filming when she has been home. Soon after the Baftas she was at Notts County for Football Rocks, a charity event organised by the club with Jake Bugg. Vicky appeared in the Clifton chart-topper’s video Two Fingers and they have since become friends.
But the main reason she was there was because boyfriend Jonny Owen was playing.
The couple met three years ago during the making of the rock ‘n’ roll comedy film Svengali, written by and starring Jonny.
The Welshman and our Vicky, who appeared in the film as his girlfriend, first settled in London but the draw home was too much for Vicky and the couple now live in Toton.
“I love the city and I love the people – they remind me a lot of those in South Wales,” says Jonny, who has appeared in TV dramas Shameless and Monroe.
“Everyone is very friendly and open. I can’t speak highly enough of people in Nottingham. They have made me feel very welcome.”
Jonny, who produces shows for Notts TV, is currently making a major film about Nottingham Forest’s legendary European Cup wins.
On another swift visit home, Vicky and her man had a meal at La Rock in Sandiacre, a restaurant, which earned the very first five star review from the Nottingham Post’s long-serving restaurant critic, the Food Sleuth.
“It was some of the best service I’ve ever had. And the maître d’ was so lovely. There was nothing pretentious about it and the food was great.”
The former Fernwood Comprehensive School student is a graduate of Nottingham’s Television Workshop, along with Joe Dempsie, Jack O’Connell, Samantha Morton and many others.
It was the two-time Oscar nominee Samantha Morton who spotted her talent at the Workshop and brought her to the attention of director Ian Smith.
Her early screen roles included a spot in daytime soap Doctors, as well as Filth And Wisdom – the first feature film directed by Madonna.
But her big break came after she was cast as Lol in Shane Meadows’ feature film, This Is England, which won him a Bafta.
The third spin-off TV series, This Is England ‘90, has been shot and is due on Channel 4 in September.
Vicky was reunited with fellow “workshoppers” Joe Dempsie, Andrew Shim, Rosamund Hanson, Michael Socha and Chanel Cresswell.
And once again director Meadows insisted the cast improvise each scene.
Says Vicky: “It’s the most fun I’ve had on a set in a long time.”

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