For the past 18 months, Natalie Gumede has been at the centre of one of Coronation Street's most gripping and shocking storylines. The talented actress plays Kirsty Soames, a former policewoman who subjected her partner Tyrone Dobbs (Alan Halsall) to a campaign of domestic violence and abuse, before telling police that she was the victim.
"It has been a really challenging and exhausting time," she said of the role. This week, as Tyrone's court case gets underway, Natalie sat down with This Morning hosts Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford to discuss the role.
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"Alan is a joy to work with - he makes it so easy for me. We are very well looked after and the (fighting) scenes are really tightly choreographed so of course Alan is never ever hurt. But they are very intense."
The star, 29, also spoke about her departure from the much-loved long-running soap. "It was really tough, but I was ready to leave," she said. "I think it was a healthy time to go after such an intense storyline, but it's surprising how a place kind of creeps under your skin, and I don't think I could have wished to work with a better team so it did surprise me how emotional I was at leaving."
"But they haven't killed her off so, you never know, she could be creeping down a dark alleyway any day!"
Fans needn't worry about Natalie disappearing from our screens. The star - named Best Newcomer at the British Soap Awards last year - is reportedly being lined up for the next series of Strictly Come Dancing.
She has previously revealed her desire to join the show, saying, "I'm a huge fan and would love to get the sequins out and be partnered with Brendan Cole. I know he's a hard taskmaster but I like a challenge."