‘It’s astonishing how many people tell me [Grange Hill] was their favourite programme. Especially politicians,’ says Phil Redmond, the show’s creator. Photograph: Christopher Thomond/The Guardian

From Brookside’s bodies under the patio through the Emmerdale plane crash to Luke Morgan’s rape in Hollyoaks, Phil Redmond has always known how to fra(...)

‘There is a perception that if a person differs from the social norm they are going to suffer more,’ says Francesca Martinez. File photograph: Aidan Crawley

Accepting yourself as you are is “an act of civil disobedience” in a culture that “promotes self loathing”, actress, comedian and disability advocate (...)

Deirdre O’Kane: “Comedic acting is never rewarded the same way that dramatic acting is, but it’s harder to make work”

Current favourite book? I’m just finishing What the **** Is Normal? by a comedian called Francesca Martinez, who has cerebral palsy. It’s a biography(...)

Francesca Martinez: ‘Happiness lies in accepting who you are.’ Photograph: Aidan Crawley

After the hot chocolate that comedian Francesca Martinez has ordered is placed in front of her, she asks for a straw. The waiter can’t quite disgui(...)