Sarah Lancashire couldn't be a police officer

Sarah Lancashire

Sarah Lancashire

Sarah Lancashire says shadowing officers for her role in 'Happy Valley' made her realise she could never join the police force in real life.

Sarah Lancashire could never be a police officer.

The 49-year-old actress portrays Sgt. Catherine Cawood in new drama 'Happy Valley' and, though she found life "interesting" when she worked with some real-life officers to research the role, she doesn't think it's a job she would be willing to take on.

She said: "One of the most interesting things I learnt when I went out with them was how undermanned they are and also that their life can change within five minutes.

"We had this incident where we were called out to a house where the bailiffs had turned up and needed to take some belongings away. It turned into the filthiest fight and that's when I stayed in the van. The whole day changed. It's interesting, but it's not for me."

Former 'Coronation Street' star Sarah worked hard to ensure she was convincing in her role, and felt a "huge relief" when told she was allowed to show compassion to victims.

She explained: "Lisa [the police advisor] was always on set to help with the procedural stuff, she had a very keen eye on making sure everything was accurate.

"I really did need her there all the time, just for tiny things like putting handcuffs on or in one scene I deliver bad news to somebody and she said, 'Look, it's OK to cry and hug them.'

"That was a huge relief because it's human nature and your instinct, but it tends not to be how we see that world portrayed."

'Happy Valley' - which also stars Steve Pemberton, James Norton and Siobhan Finneran - begins on BBC One on Tuesday night (29.04.14).


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