Bolton's award winning actress  spoke of her pride to be filming in her hometown.

Sophie Willan has been spotted in and around Bolton as filming for the new series of Alma's Not Normal gets underway.

The Bolton News caught up with Sophie, a talented writer and performer who won a BAFTA for her series pilot show, while she was filming in Horwich.

She was spotted in the Green Machine bike shop in Horwich.

Earlier in the week she had been filming in Bolton town centre.

Sophie said it was “always a treat to come home” and “lovely” to be in her hometown.

Taking a break from filming, Sophie told The Bolton News: “I only live 15 minutes away, but it’s always a treat to come home, and it’s lovely to be working here, and employing lots of Boltonians as well.

“It’s fabulous.”


The Bolton News:

Owner of Green Machine Neal Taylor, says that the production crew needed a bike shop to film in and chose his, which he said was “quite exciting”.

He also said that he was looking forward to being able to spot some places he will be able to recognise.

Neal said: “They needed a scene with a bike shop, and they visited us and checked it out and the art people came to move things around to fit things in.

“It should be quite exciting.

“We have seen some of the show so it’s quite nice to see bits we recognise.”

Created, written by, starring and Executive Produced by Sophie, Alma’s Not Normal centres on a Boltonian wild-child, Alma Nuthall and her family of eccentric, unruly women and was the creation of Sophie in 2018 when she was an inaugural winner of the BBC’s Caroline Aherne Bursary Award.

Sophie was also spotted filing in Bolton in 2021 during the filming of season 1 in Le Mans Crescent inside Bolton Library and Museum ­— with "Alma Unit" signs posted on lampposts in the crescent.

The series, produced by Expectation, offers a bitingly funny and unflinching take on class, sexuality, mental health, and substance abuse.

It celebrates women dealing with the hands they’ve been dealt while doggedly pursing their dreams.

Nerys Evans, Executive Producer and Expectation’s Creative Director, Scripted, says: “Sophie Willan is one of the most naturally gifted comedy writers I’ve had the pleasure of working with.

“It’s been so wonderful seeing the response to Almas not Normal.

“Viewers have connected so instantly to Sophie’s characters.

“Like everyone else, I can’t wait to see what Alma and her brilliant family do next.”

Broadcast details will be confirmed in due course.

The first series of Alma’s Not Normal is available on BBC iPlayer and can also be seen on Britbox in Australia and CBC Gem in Canada.

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