Belfast Telegraph

Bout ye, Chuck! Kerri Quinn's Belfast accent to cut across Coronation Street's famed cobbles

By Ivan Little

A Northern Ireland actress has vowed that her new role will see her character "kick up a storm" after landing her dream job on Coronation Street.

Kerri Quinn's move on to the famous cobbles of Britain's most popular soap comes only months after she starred in her first major TV role in the critically acclaimed Belfast-based drama Come Home.

She portrayed Brenna, the lover of married Greg, played by award-winning Doctor Who star Christopher Eccleston.

And it was after seeing her in that BBC mini-series, which featured some racy sex scenes, that ITV producers thought of Kerri for Corrie.

They flew the Belfast actress to Manchester for a series of meetings where she read for a role, but she didn't get the job.

However, the Corrie team clearly liked Kerri, and have now offered her the role of a character called Vicky Jeffries.

Single mum Kerri (35) has been sworn to secrecy about her involvement in the show.

All she has said is that her character's son is already in the soap and that Vicki comes in to resolve a "problem" with Peter Barlow, played by Chris Gascoyne.

The Queen's University graduate said that the soap's producers want her to keep her Belfast accent, and she will initially be working on 10 episodes of The Street.

Kerri, who will be flying home to Belfast at the weekends to see her six-year-old daughter Libby, said she has been nervous in the build-up to starting work this week on the long-running Manchester-based soap.

She tweeted earlier in the week: "Off to Manchester in the morning for a few months. Excited."

She also posted a picture of her hugging Libby with the message: "Think she's going to miss me when I'm away."

She laughed as she talked about how her mother came up with a storyline suggestion for her character in the soap.

Her idea is that Vicki goes to Weatherfield looking for her Belfast-born father Jim McDonald (played by Northern Ireland actor Charles Lawson). However, his son Steve falls in love with her, not realising that she's his half-sister.

"I sent that storyline to my agent and he sent it to Coronation Street, but I can't see it making it into the programme," added Kerri.

Her scenes in the soap won't be seen on screen until September.

Kerri has long been considered one of Northern Ireland's most versatile actresses.

Among her best remembered productions are Cabaret, Educating Rita and Dancing Shoes, the musical about football legend George Best.

She had been due to take part in the stage version of the Terri Hooley story Good Vibrations at the Lyric Theatre in September, but she will be returning to the Belfast stage for a one-off weekend reading at the Strand Arts Centre in August of a new drama about the Floral Hall in the north of the city.

Away from the theatre, however, Kerri revealed in newspaper interviews several years ago how she had encountered real life drama in north Belfast where her windows were smashed in a sectarian attack after loyalist flags disappeared from her street.

"Everything was ruined: sofas, bedding. That was it. I wasn't going back.

"I moved in with my mother and father," she told the Sunday Times.

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