Belfast Telegraph

Ashley Walters: Men can cry too

Ashley Walters has said he's not so tough - he's scared of wasps and spiders.

The star of new BBC One drama Inside Men has turned his life around since being jailed for gun crime.

The former member of So Solid Crew said: "I grew up having to be hard and trying to fit in with everyone else."

But the father-of-four added: "I've taught my boys that being a man is not about being hard.

"Men can cry, men can feel emotions just like women do."

Ashley, 29, who ended up in a young offenders' institute in 2002 after being found in possession of a firearm, said: "I'm not trying to say I'm hard as nails, I'm not. I'm scared of spiders and wasps, and I am quite a sensitive guy to be honest."

Ashley's credits have included 50 Cent's biopic Get Rich Or Die Tryin', the gangland-set film Sket and last year's critically acclaimed TV drama Top Boy, as well as his breakthrough role in Bullet Boy.

His epiphany came while serving the sentence for firearm possession.

"I came out believing the thing I had to focus on most was being a father and breaking the cycle," he said.

:: Inside Men starts on BBC One on Thursday, February 2.

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