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Wednesday 24 Sep 2014

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Land Girls: Jo Woodcock is Bea

Jo Woodcock in Land Girls

Jo Woodcock (Tess Of The D'Urbervilles, All The Small Things) plays bright-eyed Bea – a 17-year-old innocent who lies about her age to join the WLA, discovering a world of adventure as a result.

Inquisitive and fun-loving, Bea is headstrong with a desire to change the world. Sometimes irritating due to her constant energy, Bea will happily launch campaigns for justice, albeit ill-considered ones.

Bea fluctuates between being a child and a woman and struggles to navigate a course between the two states. Her older sister Annie has always looked after her and it's no different now they're both land girls.

However, being away from the constraints of home with all the wonders of the country, meeting boys and living with other girls, Annie has her work cut out keeping her sister on the straight and narrow.

When Annie isn't there to keep her in line, things go seriously awry for Bea.

Bea is cheeky and mischievous, and, although she's been taught to respect authority, it doesn't stop her sometimes asking questions and trying to find a different way to tackle an issue.

Jo enjoyed portraying Bea's enthusiasm and sense of fairness.

"She doesn't know it's not the done thing to speak her mind sometimes, for example, she speaks up about the bad treatment of black troops. When she sees injustice she goes for it."

Adds Jo: "It's always a joy to do a period piece because it takes you out of yourself, although some of the personal issues they faced are just like normal life today.

"Bea goes on a journey from childhood into womanhood. She starts off as very wide-eyed and we see her grow up so quickly. It was exciting to take her on that adventure. It was also quite good to play being pregnant as I've never done that before – but it was a bit hot. I was sweating under my bump!"

Filming in the Warwickshire countryside was another bonus for Jo.

"I'm London-based and have been for 10 years but I was born in Pembury in Kent and for the first 11 years of my life I lived in a village. I've also had country 'work experience' on Tess Of The D'Urbervilles. Bea is almost the opposite of that, she comes from a built-up area, so everything is new and exciting for her."

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