Sue Johnston and Robson Green cast in new BBC1 Manchester salon drama Age Before Beauty

sue johnston

Sue Johnston, Downton Abbey's Denker, has been cast for a new BBC drama Age Before Beauty created by Poldark writer Debbie Horsfield

The BBC has announced an exciting cast for the new BBC1 drama Age Before Beauty.

Downton Abbey's Sue Johnston will be joined by Robson Green from Granchester and Lisa Riley from Three Girls in Age Before Beauty. The drama reunites the team behind hit show Cutting It in a family saga set in a Manchester salon.

Filming starts next week on the six-part drama written by Debbie Horsfield, who also wrote Poldark. Age Before Beauty explores a fear of ageing, instant gratification and the long-term relationships which are built within the beauty industry.

At the heart of the drama is an unconventional family with rife running throughout it. Will secrets and lies destroy the family or liberate it?

polly walker

Polly Walker plays Bel in Age Before Beauty


Bel, played by Polly Walker, has been a homemaker for the past 18 years. Now that her twins have left for university, her brother-in-law Teddy, played by Robson, begs Bel to help save the failing family business.

The salon would benefit from a staff reshuffle as it employs most of Bel's unconventional family. Lisa Riley from Three Girls plays one of Bel's sister, a tattooist. Fellow sisters Leanne, played by Kelly Harrison, and Heidi, a cosmetic surgery addict played by Vicki Myers, also work in the salon.

Bel struggles with the demands of the salon and faces marital trouble when a new personal trainer catches her husband's eye. Will she be able to handle it all?

Age Before Beauty is made by Mainstreet Pictures. Laura Mackie, executive producer and joint MD at Mainstreet Pictures, said: "We can't wait to start filming Debbie's wonderful multi-generational drama with such a fantastic mix of new and familiar faces".

She has previously said: "Debbie is writing at the top of her game and in Age Before Beauty she has created a colourful and memorable set of characters and a story that examines our obsession with the ageing process in an emotional, entertaining and surprising way."