AN actor from Hartlepool is appearing on a television programme that will be beamed across the country to millions of viewers tonight.
Dan Westwood is to star as a contestant on Channel 4 reality TV show The Intern, which airs at 9pm.
The show, starring Dragon’s Den entrepreneur Hilary Devey, sees 27-year-old Dan battle it out against two other contestants for their dream job as a journalist.
And the town star, who recently appeared in Coronation Street as Kylie Platt’s pal Ralph, went on to land himself a proper job as a journalist at the Sunday Sport newspaper.
Dan, who grew up in Cornwall Street, off Oxford Road, said: “I was really happy to do the show and work alongside Hilary Devey.
“She basically acts as a mentor to get the contestants into their dream jobs that they wouldn’t normally get to do because of their qualifications or whatever.
“There are certain things I can and can’t say but I can say that I’m working for the paper now so take from that what you want. There is a twist as well.”
He added: “Hilary is really nice and when she appears on the telly she’s basically a caricature of herself.
“She’s become a good friend actually and I still keep in touch with her. She’s such a strong businesswoman and an inspiration really.”
Dan, who had already done some work as a freelance writer alongside his acting, said he was approached to do the show and agreed.
He told the Mail that on the first day of filming he had no idea on which paper he would be working and only found out when a car picked him up and drove him to the Sunday Sport headquarters, in Manchester.
As soon as he arrived he said it was “all systems go”.
Dan, a former pupil of St Aidan’s CE Primary, and Brierton Comprehensive schools in Hartlepool, said he was thrown in at the deep end and given a number of scenarios to tackle.
He said: “It was brilliant, a really good experience and another string to add to my bow.
“The support I’ve had off people back at home in Hartlepool has been brilliant.
“The people at home are always really supportive, they love their own, so I expected nothing less really.”
Dan, who also stars in CBeebies programme Justin’s House with kids’ favourite Mr Tumble, said he hopes his appearance on the show, and other shows, inspires other people from the town.
He said: “Without sounding cheesy or like a politician or something, it’s just nice to be able to give something back to the people of the town where I grew up.
“You never know other people may think that there wouldn’t be a chance of them doing anything like this, but hopefully this could inspire someone to follow in my footsteps. If you want to do something you can.”.