Scotland

Blue star Simon Webbe to join River City drama

Simon Webbe Image copyright Alan Peebles
Image caption The first episodes featuring Simon Webbe will air in November

Singer and actor Simon Webbe, from the boy band Blue, is joining River City, BBC Scotland has confirmed.

Webbe will be arriving in Shieldinch this autumn, among other new faces that are set to join the weekly drama.

The BBC said Webbe had filmed his first River City scenes this week as the new character Andy - a former army man and friend of the Roth family.

Blue is an English R&B group that formed in 2000, releasing their first hit All Rise in May 2001.

Other new actors joining BBC Scotland's flagship drama soon are Rebecca Atkinson (Shameless), Alana Hood (Bridget Jones's Baby, Field Of Blood, Lip Service), Juliet Cadzow (Balamory, Skins) and TV newcomers Louise McMenemy and Libby Dye.

Webbe's first episodes will air in November.

Loud fans

He said: "It's an amazing feeling getting a role on River City. Getting into acting and being taken seriously is something that I've always wanted to do.

"Going from being a TV extra into being in a boy band, it's an absolute dream come true. River City is full of feisty characters and I can't wait to get my teeth into Andy's storylines."

It is the first time Webbe, who is from Manchester, has acted in Scotland, but the singer-songwriter has toured with Blue and Strictly Come Dancing.

Image caption Simon rose to fame with the band Blue

He added: "My experience has always been, the further north you go, the louder the fans get - and that's the vibe I always get in Scotland.

"People recognise you in the street and are always welcoming. I can't wait to get started on River City."

The executive producer of River City, Kieran Hannigan, said: "We're delighted to welcome our new cast members to the River City family. I'm sure Simon will be a huge hit with our fans and will turn heads as Andy when he hits the screen in November.

"Rebecca Atkinson is a fantastic addition to the cast and her character, Belinda, will send sinister shockwaves through the Murdoch clan.

"And we are really thrilled to bring on board some brilliant Scottish actors in Alana Hood, Juliet Cadzow and Louise McMenemy."

River City is on BBC One Scotland every Tuesday at 20:00.

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