Essex girl wins role in Neighbours

A TEENAGER from Essex has beaten off more than 1,500 other hopefuls to win a role in the popular Aussie soap Neighbours.

Gabriella Darlington, from Chelmsford, will guest star as Poppy Rogers during a four-week stint on the show.

The 18-year-old was whittled down to the final two in Channel Five’s Be A Star On Neighbours competition.

She will begin filming her part in the iconic soap on Monday.

Gabriella used to do her homework while watching Neighbours and her earliest acting experiences include roles in schools nativity play.

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She said: “I can’t believe how lucky I am. I never expected to be shortlisted, let alone get to Australia and win.

“I have had an amazing week and am really excited to start on Monday.”

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The character Poppy is described as a “free-spirited” young woman who has encouraged her cousin, Ruby, to accompany her on a backpacking trip around Ruby’s native Australia.

Poppy’s adventurous nature takes them to a bar - arousing interest from some of Erinsborough’s most eligible bachelors.

Gabriella will appear on UK screens from November 10 and fans will be able to see what happened when the two finalists went to Melbourne in a special programme airing in the same week on Five.

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