The casting directors for Waterloo Road clearly had a knack for spotting future stars. The long-running BBC series, which was originally set in a Manchester secondary school and is set to return later this year after a seven year hiatus, kickstarted the careers of a handful of talented young British actors — including Bridgerton’s Phoebe Dynevor.


Before she found fame as the eldest Bridgerton daughter, Daphne, in Netflix’s wildly successful Regency romance, Dynevor got her start in the industry with a debut acting gig as well-off Waterloo Road student Siobhan Mailey, appearing alongside Doctor Who and Victoria star Jenna Coleman (see what we mean about the cast’s star power?).

She’s not the only Bridgerton star to have featured on the show either: her future on-screen husband Regé-Jean Page also had a short stint on the drama, as many viewers who have re-watched the show since it was brought back to BBC iPlayer have been quick to notice.

Though some of the show’s fan favourite characters are set to return for the upcoming revival — including art teacher Kim Campbell, played by Angela Griffin, and Donte and Chlo Charles, played by Adam Thomas and Katie Griffiths — it seems unlikely that Siobhan will be among them (as well as a third season of Bridgerton, Dynevor has a string of high-profile film and TV roles lined up).

For nostalgia’s sake, though, here’s what you need to know about Dynevor’s time in the classrooms of British TV’s most dramatic secondary school.

Who did Phoebe Dynevor play in Waterloo Road?

Dynevor’s character Siobhan joined the show after Waterloo Road, a state comprehensive, merged with private school John Fosters, a move that caused tensions between old and new pupils (and staff too).

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Her storylines were pretty tame by Waterloo Road standards— by which we mean there were no dubious elopements to Gretna Green (that was reserved for future Emily In Paris star Lucien Laviscount’s Jonah Kirby, who crossed the Scottish border to marry his Spanish teacher in one memorable episode), murder confessions or explosions.

Towards the start of the school year, Siobhan, who came from a privileged background and was rarely seen without one of those narrow stretchy headbands that were all the rage in the late ‘00s, seemed to turn her nose up at her new classmates. Instead of making new pals, she stuck closely to her best friend Amy (Nisa Cole), who ended up dragging her into clashes with the original Waterloo Road pupils (as well as peer-pressuring her to get a matching tattoo).

She started up a relationship with fellow student Luke Pendle (Richie Jeeves), much to her old friends’ disapproval, but like so many teenage romances, it didn’t last for very long. She later transferred her affections to Finn Sharkey (played by Jack McMullen, who’d later go on to star alongside Stephen Graham in BBC drama Time) which caused friction between her and Amy, who also had a crush on him. Things got heated when Amy used the time-honoured conflict resolution method of cracking an egg on her former bestie’s head, resulting in a school-wide food fight that put one pupil in hospital.

Eventually, Dynevor’s character started to find her own feet, breaking out of Amy’s shadow and befriending some of the other Waterloo Road girls, including the memorably named Sambuca Kelly (Holly Kenny).

How long was Phoebe Dynevor in Waterloo Road?

Compared to other cast members, Dynevor’s stint on the show was relatively short, appearing in just 20 episodes. Her character didn’t get much of a send off either — she appeared at the school prom in the final instalment of that season, but wasn’t featured again, so it was assumed that Siobhan had left the school.

Which year and series did Phoebe Dynevor appear in Waterloo Road?

Dynevor joined the show for its fifth season in 2009, when she was aged just 14, with her final episode airing in 2010. Waterloo Road marked her first ever screen role, and as well as Coleman, her fellow season 5 co-stars included Downton Abbey’s Sophie McShera (as fellow student Ros McCain) and Boiling Point’s Vinette Robinson (as struggling teacher Helen Hopewell), along with show stalwarts like Denise Welch, Tom Chambers and Elizabeth Berrington.

She followed up the part with a string of TV appearances in shows including Prisoners’ Wives on BBC One (2012) and period dramas The Village (2014) and Dickensian (2015).


Were Phoebe Dynevor and Regé-Jean Page in Waterloo Road together?

Dynevor and her future Bridgerton co-star Page (aka Simon Basset, the Duke of Hastings) never actually crossed paths on the school show’s set. Page joined Waterloo Road five years after Dynevor left the BBC drama, and appeared in its tenth season. By this time, the entire school community had upped sticks from Rochdale to a small town in Scotland, for reasons that were never entirely made clear on screen (the move was in fact the result of a BBC drive to increase Scottish programming).

Page played Guy Braxton, a newly qualified graphics and design teacher who was so skint after studying at university that he ended up sleeping in the school and pilfering food from the staff room, until he was discovered by headteacher Vaughan Fitzgerald (Neil Pearson). “He is a good teacher for the kids, but because he’s gone through the process so quickly, he needs support and it takes a while for people to work out how to support him to get the best out of him,” Page explained to Digital Spy shortly before his debut on the show in 2015.

Guy was also revealed to be the estranged brother of pupil Carrie Norton (Tahirah Sharif), after he was nearly suspended from work when one of her classmates spotted them hugging and jumped to conclusions, assuming they were having an inappropriate relationship.

Just like Dynevor, Page’s time on the show was relatively brief, as season 10 would be Waterloo Road’s final outing. He followed up the role with a part in the remake of the iconic ‘70s miniseries Roots (2016) alongside fellow Brit actor Malachi Kirby, and in the Shondaland legal drama For The People (2018), which was when he first caught the attention of Bridgerton’s executive producer Shonda Rhimes.

Bridgerton season 3 will stream on Netflix, while seasons 1 and 2 are available now. Sign up for Netflix from £6.99 a month. Netflix is also available on Sky Glass and Virgin Media Stream.


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