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Cathy Shipton: ‘The Casualty door is wonderfully wide open!’

(Image credit: BBC)

Cathy Shipton is best known for her role as nurse Duffy in BBC1’s Casualty. She starred in the medical drama’s very first episode on September 6, 1986 and hasn't ruled out a permanent return after this weekend's guest appearance.

Duffy has returned to the Holby ED and her old pal Charlie Fairhead’s rescue tonight and tomorrow. It’s an exciting two-part special that not only reunites the two popular original characters, but also marks the start of the 30th series…

Talking to What’s on TV, Cathy said: “I’m like the penny that rolls back! Quite a few jaws will drop when Duffy turns up in that blue frock!

“We discover Duffy’s left her family in New Zealand, hopped on a plane and signed up in Holby as an agency nurse, who happens to be working that night in A&E!”

If you’ve seen the trailer advertising this weekend’s explosive episode you know popular nurse Charlie – who has been with the long-running medical drama for its full 30 years – is at death’s door.

Would Casualty's bosses really retire Derek Thompson once and for all? And could this signal the return of Cathy Shipton in a more permanent role?

Cathy revealed Duffy’s in a take-charge mood when she returns: “We see Duffy with more authority. At one point she’s running everything and challenges the doctors, even though they don’t know her from Adam!”

She adds: “When they asked me to come back for the 30th series, I didn’t realise they’d have her bang in there nursing in quite a crucial role and making a lot of really salient decisions.”

As for Duffy sticking round long-term, Cathy is keeping her cards close to her chest (she sounds keen to us!): “These things aren’t in my hands, but the door is wonderfully wide open, so we’ll just see how it goes!”