Angela'scutting it out
A heavily pregnant Angela Griffin, the feisty star of the BBC’s smash-hit hairdressing drama, Cutting It, is worried that she is finally turning into a complete and utter girl.
"I’m such a bloke usually," she laughs, claiming that she can normally drive perfectly, read a map with her eyes shut and programme any video player at a hundred paces.
"The thing is that after about four weeks of being pregnant, all my usual logic started to slowly go away and now it’s disappeared completely.
"My parking is just hilarious these days and I end up on the curb every single time - there are obviously far more important things going on in my brain right now than programming videos."
The 27-year-old Leeds-born actress, one of Coronation Street’s most popular stars until she left in 1998 and ex-girlfriend of former Casualty star Will Mellor, confesses that she is absolutely over the moon about expecting her first baby, due in early June.
"I’m really enjoying it - I’m loving it in fact, because it’s such a massive life experience.
"Honestly, I’m obsessed - I’ve got all the magazines from the last six or seven months and if it’s been written about babies, believe me I’ve read it," she says, while attempting - and failing miserably - to put up a new pram at the same time.
"How I’m going to do this mothering thing I have no idea - I can’t even get a flipping pram up!"
Griffin, who plays bitchy beautician Darcey Henshall in Cutting It - back on BBC1 on Tuesday - got together with her partner Jason Milligan about 18 months ago.
Although she had known Jason, the brother of actor Max Beesley and old flame of Noel Gallagher’s ex-wife Meg Matthews, for years, there hadn’t been even a hint of romance before then.
"I’ve known Jason for five or six years, but about a year-and-a-half ago, when we were both single, at last I got very drunk and basically came on to him - and it worked, I think!"
Jason, Griffin admits, is by far the more laid-back half of the expectant couple and his reaction to her announcement that they were expecting a baby is a case in point. "We’re both very happy - Jason was really calm and chilled out about it and it was me who was like: ‘Oh my god, oh my god’. I suppose that’s me and Jason in a nutshell - I’m always the one who worries about this and that and he just always just says: ‘Baby, it will all be absolutely fine’. We’re great together."
With her perfect partner in tow and a new garden flat in north west London "with a proper upstairs and downstairs", Griffin says that she is sailing through her pregnancy, having managed to kick the cigarettes two months before the tell-tale blue line on the pregnancy test appeared to change her life.
"It’s been so easy that it’s almost worrying - I’ll probably end up with some horrific five-day labour with 546 stitches and a caesarian," she jokes.
But according to Griffin, giving up smoking seems to have been the most straightforward part of being pregnant and she admits that she is still getting used to watching her weight for the first time.
"In some ways it’s really hard work being pregnant as it doesn’t exactly mix with my two favourite things which are food and alcohol.
"I’ve never been a particularly thin person or anything like that and I’ve never cared about what I eat and all that, but now all of a sudden I need to watch my weight more than any other time in my life."
In fact Griffin admits that she is so concerned about piling on the post-baby pounds that she has already booked a strict personal trainer to come round and put her through her paces.
"It’s the only way that I will ever do it - apparently he comes round to the house, which is perfect as the baby can be upstairs having an afternoon nap and I can be downstairs being told to run around my living room with bags of icing sugar in my hands or whatever," she laughs, clearly excited about the fast-approaching changes to her life.
Another series of Cutting It is already provisionally planned for late autumn this year. And Griffin insists that she isn’t being vain about losing weight before filming in Manchester again, as it’s all part of the job.
"There might be another series, which won’t give me too long to get back into shape," she says. "God, I’ll only have four or five months to make myself look like I looked before - I mean my job is based on the way that I look, like it or not."
Griffin makes it perfectly clear that she would only consider going back to work on Cutting It after the baby arrives and wouldn’t even consider anything else at this stage.
"Starting a new project would be a nightmare as my head is going to be all over the place. I’ve read that you’re not designed to stop having baby brain until at least nine months after the baby is born - so you see, this whole losing your brain thing isn’t rubbish after all.
"Also it’s up north near my mum and Jason’s family as well, so it’s perfect."
But practicalities aside, the actress visibly brightens as she reveals that her family, especially her mother Sheila and her two brothers Stephen and Kenny, can hardly wait to meet the newest addition to the close-knit clan.
"My mum is so excited - it’s not her first grandchild, but apparently its different when it’s your daughter having a baby.
"I’m really gravitating towards her at the minute because I know how much experience she’s had and there’s one thing that I know my mum’s dead good at and that’s bringing up kids."
But when it comes to describing her older brothers’ initial reaction to her news, she can barely keep a straight face.
"They’ve finally realised that their baby sister has definitely had sex," she chuckles. "When I told them it felt like the first thing that went through their minds was: ‘Oh my God, she’s doing it’ - all those years they must have kidded themselves that I was this virginal girl who waited."
Cutting It, BBC 1, Tuesday, 9pm
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