Coronation Street star Kimberly Hart-Simpson has revealed it was her 'dream' to land a role on the much-loved soap.
The 35-year-old actress auditioned for the ITV show for over a decade, before bagging the role of sex worker Nicky Wheatley.
The character first appeared in June 2020 when she met the recently widowed Daniel Osbourne (portrayed by Rob Mallard), but left four months later to start a new life with her daughter.
Now, Kimberly has opened up on her time on the cobbles in a new interview.
Speaking to The Sun, the soap star revealed it was her late father who inspired her to audition for the soap.
"The Corrie obsession came from my dad," Kimberly said. "Of all the memories that exist in my brain of my dad and me, Corrie is one of the most stand-out ones. He was a massive, massive fan, obsessed with it.
“You couldn’t ring the house phone when it was on and the kettle was full so he could have a brew during the breaks. He loved Jack and Vera. I loved Bet Lynch.”
Kimberly's dad Kevin sadly later died from bone marrow cancer in 2007 aged 63.
Before his death, Kevin encouraged his daughter to audition for the long-running soap whilst being treated at Oldham Hospital.
She added: "When he was passing he said, ‘Just do me a favour and get on Corrie for me’. I didn’t say anything — I knew he’d cursed me at that point. But if he hadn’t, I probably wouldn’t be sitting here today.
“It took nearly ten years of auditions."
After nearly a decade, Kimberly landed the role of Nicky - leaving her in floods of tears at the time.
Meanwhile, the star, who previously appeared on Celebs Go Dating, says she couldn't have been happier to portray the sex worker.
"I am thrilled that charities and sex workers have contacted me to say they like the way Nicky is portrayed because she is so realistic and the writers haven’t given her a drug or drink problem," Kimberly said.
“She is just a feisty mum, doing it for her daughter — for survival. I am so proud to play her."
In April this year, the actress reprised her role with Nicky working as a teaching assistant alongside Daniel at Weatherfield High.
However, it soon began to fall apart for Nicky when Max Turner (Harry McDermott) overheard Daniel and his new girlfriend rowing in the street about his past relationship with Nicky and her previous work.
Coronation Street airs Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 8pm on ITV and ITV Hub.