Hollyoaks star Denise Welch: ‘Passive-aggressive character is based on someone I worked with’

Trish Minniver played by Denise Welch
(Image credit: C4)

Trish Minniver is fast becoming the village’s mum from hell...

Denise Welch has revealed that her new Hollyoaks character - dance mum from hell Trish Minniver - is based on someone she worked with.

Trish, the mother of long-term character Maxine (Nikki Sanderson), pitched up in the village last month, hot on the heels of toyboy lover, Brad King (Tom Benedict Knight).

Trish Minniver in Hollyoaks

Next week will see Trish trying to launch her own dance school (Picture: Lime Pictures)

Maxine had previously shared a passionate kiss with Brad, unaware he was dating her mother.

A rocky relationship

As Trish and Maxine chatted, it was clear their relationship was strained, with Maxine referring to her time as a child, attending Trish’s lessons, when her mum would put her at the back of the class and cruelly refer to her as 'Maxi moo cow' and 'a heffer with two left feet.'

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Talking of the difficult mother-daughter dynamic, Welch tells us: "It’s not a healthy relationship, but it’s also not uncommon. There are a lot of pushy mums out there.

Trish Minniver and Maxine in Hollyoaks

Maxine thinks she's found the perfect venue at Salon De Thé (Picture: Lime Pictures)

"I did a role years ago in TV, and a person, who shall remain nameless, told me that her mother said to her, 'You want to watch your weight, because Denise is really showing you up; she’s a lot slimmer than you.'"

The 62 year old star adds: "I also worked with someone a few years ago in theatre.

"I’ve been very lucky in theatre, and done it for 40 years, and I’m not someone who ever has fall outs - I tend to get on with most people.

"But I did a show, and there was someone who really had it in for me, who was incredibly passive aggressive, and it made me really ill.

Week 3 Trish Minniver played by Denise Welch in Hollyoaks

Trish arrived in Hollyoaks in January (Picture: Lime Pictures)

"But it was all done through a very wide smile. So Trish has that aspect to her, which I brought in, basing it on that person."

Trish takes on Cher

Trish will be back on screens next week, when she is encouraged by Maxine to open a dance school so that she can start paying her way.

Maxine thinks she has found the perfect venue when she discovers that Marnie (Lysette Anthony) has space to rent at Salon De Thé.

But Cher (Bethannie Hare) has her eye on the space to open a pop-up hair salon, prompting Marnie to pit the women against each other.

Week 3 Trish Minniver played by Denise Welch in Hollyoaks

Trish and Maxine have always had a strained relationship (Picture: Lime Pictures)

Reveals Welch: "Marnie is going to decide whether Trish can have it as a dance school or Cher has it as a hair academy. I’m not going to say who wins, but it makes for some very good comedy moments.

"Trish and Marnie together are very funny. It takes off with Trish’s darker side, and Brad is up to all sorts of dealings, much of which Trish is turning a blind eye to. And poor old Maxi moo is slap bang in the middle."

Hollyoaks airs weeknights at 6.30pm on Channel 4, with first look screenings at 7pm on E4.

Alison Slade
Soaps Editor

Alison Slade has over 20 years of experience as a TV journalist and has spent the vast majority of that time as Soap Editor of TV Times magazine. 

She is passionate about the ability of soaps to change the world by presenting important, issue-based stories about real people in a relatable way.

There are few soap actors that she hasn’t interviewed over the years, and her expertise in the genre means she has been called upon as a judge numerous times for The British Soap Awards and the BAFTA TV Awards.

When she is not writing about soaps, watching soaps, or interviewing people who are in soaps, she loves going to the theatre, taking a long walk or pottering about at home, obsessing over Farrow and Ball paint.