A TEENAGER from Nelson with cerebral palsy has landed a role in a popular children’s TV programme.

Nicki Shepherd, 13, will appear in the third series of the BAFTA-nominated ‘The 4 O’Clock Club’, on CBBC.

The Blessed Trinity School pupil auditioned for a role as an extra on the show, but the casting director was so impressed she asked Nicki to go for an actual role, and he will now appear in the show next year.

Nicki, from Nelson, has always had an interest in acting and joined his local youth theatre in Burnley. He then signed up for the Carol Godby Theatre Workshop drama school in Bury whose former pupils have includedSam Aston (Chesney in Coronation Street) and Lucien Laviscount (Jonah Kirby in Waterloo Road) .

Nicki said: “I go to the theatre group every Friday evening. When you have been there for six months and have developed your acting to a certain standard, you can enlist with an acting agency so you can audition for acting jobs.”

That is how the chance to audition for ‘The 4 O’Clock Club’ came about.

The programme is filmed on location in and around Stockport and the plot centres on Josh Carter, a pupil at Elmsbury High, and older brother Nathan who works as a teacher there.

Sarah Webb, Nicki’s English teacher at Blessed Trinity, said: “The casting director said she was so impressed with how well he remembered his lines and his acting ability. Now I want to see where it takes him.”

Richard Varey, head at Blessed Trinity, said the whole school was looking forward to Nicki’s TV debut.

He said: “We have a large number of talented students at Blessed Trinity and Nicki is one of them. We look forward to seeing him on television.”