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Meet the cast of ITV's Sheridan Smith drama Cleaning Up

Who’s who in the new insider trading drama also featuring Neil Maskell and Matthew McNulty

Published: Tuesday, 9th April 2019 at 1:04 pm

Sheridan Smith leads the cast of Cleaning Up – a brand new drama on ITV.


Created by screenwriting newcomer Mark Marlow, the series lifts the lid on the dangerous world of insider trading.

A family drama at heart, it follows one woman’s struggle to make ends meet and explores the risks she will take to provide for her children.

Get to know the cast and characters below…

Sheridan Smith as Sam

Who is Sam? An office cleaner and working class mother, Sam is strapped for cash and has an online gambling addiction, but when she discovers she has access to valuable stock market information, she sees a way out of her money troubles.

What else has Sheridan Smith starred in? The Bafta-winning actress began her career starring in sitcoms Two Pints of Lager and a Packet of Crisps, The Royle Family and Gavin and Stacey, and has since gone on to win critical acclaim – and plenty of awards – for her roles in Cilla, Mrs Biggs, The C Word and The Moorside, to name a few. She recently starred in BBC drama Care and is set to appear in the forthcoming drama Adult Material.

Jade Anouka as Jess

Who is Jess? Sam’s best friend and colleague Jess is in some ways her moral compass. Generally more level-headed, she is also struggling for money.

What else has Jade Anouka starred in? Anouka is best known for starring in Trauma, but has also been seen in Chewing Gum and is set to appear in the forthcoming movies The Rhythm Section, Fisherman’s Friends and The Dark Channel. She's appeared in a number of stage productions, including The Old Vic's Cover My Tracks.

READ MORE: Cleaning Up – what does "insider trading" mean?

Matthew McNulty as Dave

Who is Dave? Sam is separated from her husband Dave, a split caused by her gambling addiction and his infidelity. He loves his daughters and wants what’s best for them.

What else has Matthew McNulty starred in? McNulty recently played Guillaume in Versailles, and has also starred in The Terror, The Musketeers, The Mill, The Paradise, Jamaica Inn and Misfits. He’s set to appear in forthcoming ITV drama The Bay starring Morven Christie.

Ben Bailey Smith as Blake

Ben Bailey Smith in Cleaning Up, ITV Pictures

Who is Blake? Blake works in the office where Sam and Jess clean. He's often there late and is dismissive and rude to those cleaning – but it isn't long before they figure out there's a reason he's choosing to stay behind his desk long after everyone else has left.

What else has Ben Bailey Smith starred in? Also known by his stage name Doc Brown, Bailey Smith works as a rapper comedian, actor and screenwriter. He played DS Joe Hawkins in Law & Order: UK and Nathan in CBBC's 4 O'Clock Club. He appeared in the David Brent film Life on the Road and appeared in last year's Doctor Who episode The Tsuranga Conundrum. His sister is novelist Zadie Smith.

Robert Emms as Glynn

Robert Emms in Cleaning Up, ITV Pictures

Who is Glynn? In an attempt to get her hands on some extra cash, Sam rents out a room to Glynn – a PhD student who fixes appliances in his spare time.

What else has Robert Emms starred in? Emms is probably best known for playing Pythagoras in BBC fantasy drama Atlantis. He played the lead character – Albert – in War Horse on stage and went on to appear as David Lyons in Steven Spielberg's film adaptation. Other movie credits include Mirror Mirror and Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, while on TV he is also known for roles in Happy Valley, Gunpowder, The Living and the Dead and Capital.

Branka Katic as Mina

Who is Mina? Mina is one of Sam's cleaning colleagues at the office in the city. She is in real need of cash and is willing to help Sam with her dodgy dealings in order to earn money.

What else has Branka Katic starred in? Serbian actress Katic has been seen in the English-language series American Odyssey, Silent Witness, The Paradise, The Jury and Big Love.

Rosie Cavaliero as Frances

Who is Rosie? She is the compliance officer at the company Sam and Jess are stealing information from.

What else has Rosie Cavaliero starred in? Cavaliero is known for starring in Hold the Sunset, Unforgotten and Hunderby. She is also set to appear in the forthcoming BBC drama Gentleman Jack alongside Suranne Jones.

Kristy Philipps as Alice

Who is Alice? Alice is Sam’s 14-year-old daughter who is frustrated with her mother and blames everything on her.

What else has Kristy Philipps starred in? Philipps played Apelina in Will and has had small roles in Vera and Informer. She also appeared in Channel 4 documentary-drama Married to a Paedophile.

Anya McKenna Bruce as Lily

Who is Lily? Lily is Sam’s eight-year-old daughter and younger sister of Alice.

What else has Anya McKenna Bruce starred in? The young actress has appeared in Pls Like, Sense8 (playing Chelsea) and Kingdom.

Neil Maskell as Warren

Who is Warren? Warren is on Sam’s tail as she owes the man he works for a lot of money.

What else has Neil Maskell starred in? The prolific TV actor is known for No Offence, Humans, The Mimic and Utopia, to name a few, and led BBC2 film Happy New Year, Colin Burstead. He is also set to appear in the forthcoming movie Instruments of Darkness alongside Rupert Grint.

Lloyd Owen as Swanny

Who is Swanny? An insider trader who Sam tricks into thinking she works with Blake and starts doing business with.

What else has Lloyd Owen starred in? Owen played the US President in You, Me and the Apocalypse and has had brief appearances in Silent Witness and Death in Paradise.

Con O'Neill as Graham

Who is Graham? Graham is an insider trader who works with Swanny.

What else has Con O'Neill starred in? The actor has a prolific TV career and is known for his roles in Uncle, Ordinary Lies, The Tunnel, Happy Valley and Cucumber. He is also due to appear in the forthcoming Sky drama Chernobyl.

Clare Higgins as Mary

Who is Mary? Dave's mother is still very fond of Sam despite the fact that she is separated from her son.

What else has Clare Higgins starred in? Higgins is known for The Worst Witch, and for playing head of the Sisterhood Ohila in Doctor Who and Hazel Warren in EastEnders. She has also appeared in Rogue, Holby City and Parade's End.

Naomi Ackie as Beth

Who is Beth? Dave's new girlfriend who is keen to bond with Sam's daughters.

What else has Naomi Ackie starred in? Ackie was most recently seen in Channel 4's The Bisexual, and has also starred in Damilola, Our Loved Boy as well as Lady Macbeth and Yardie. She is set to appear on our screens a lot more, having secured roles in Star Wars: Episode IX and the Game of Thrones prequel.

Hero Fiennes Tiffin as Jake

Who is Jake? He is the older boyfriend of Sam's daughter Alice.

What else has Hero Fiennes Tiffin starred in? The young actor, who is the nephew of Ralph Fiennes, played 11-year-old Tom Riddle, the young version of his uncle's character Lord Voldemort in Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince. He also had a recurring role as Ioan Fuller in Safe.

Theo Barklem-Biggs as Chris

Who is Chris? Jess's feckless boyfriend Chris is not supportive of her dreams.

What else has Theo Barklem-Biggs starred in? The actor is known for starring in Crims and The Inbetweeners Movie, and he has also appeared as the junior clerk alongside Maxine Peake and Rupert Penry-Jones in the legal drama Silk and as one of the lead characters in the BBC drama Tatau.

Uriel Emil as Viktor

Who is Viktor? Sam’s boss Viktor is a cruel man who takes advantage of his army of cleaners working on zero-hours contracts.

What else has Uriel Emil starred in? The Israeli actor has been seen in The Great Fire, Homeland and The Honourable Woman. He has also written and directed a number of shorts and is set to appear in the new series of Silent Witness.

Sheridan Smith

This article was originally published in December 2018


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