Sarah started her career on stage at the early age of five in her native north-east. She continued to be involved in many theatre and independent productions until she left for London where she trained at the The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) for three years.
While there, Sarah developed another passion of hers: stage fighting and unarmed combat. She excelled in this, earning high qualifications and the coveted John Barton Prize. One of her first jobs after leaving RADA was in the feature film The House of Angelo, where she was stunt double for the leading lady and the only woman on the film’s fight team.
Sarah’s first major TV role was playing Sister Karen Newburn in the BBC’s flagship drama series, Holby City. She played the straight-talking, no-nonsense Ward Sister, and estranged wife to Nick Jordan, played by Michael French. They battled throughout the first two series and their tempestuous relationship became one of the leading story-lines.
All her TV and film roles have been both diverse and challenging, including a chain smoking pole dancer as the lead in the film Eva, a Chief Prison Officer in In Deep, a seductive burglar in Men Of The World and an alienated and tormented wife in the adaptation of Catherine Cookson’s period novel, Tilly Trotter.
Sarah also had the fantastic opportunity of working with Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant in the 2nd series of their award winning comedy, Extras, playing the recurring role of the on set make-up woman, whose name nobody can remember.
She was honoured to be asked recently to take part in the UK arm of After Orlando – an international, co-ordinated, theatre performance of seventy, new, short plays, by both new & established playwrights, written in response to the Orlando nightclub terrorist attack.
Over the last two years Sarah has also been developing and writing two different series for television: a period crime drama which she helped co-write, currently in early finance negotiations; and a solo piece: a modern psychological, naturalistic sci-fi thriller which is on course to be in pre-production by the end of the year.
BBC: Doctors (Yvonne Turnham) Dir: Paul Gibson BBC: Vera (Jeannie Long) Dir: Peter Hoar BBC: Doctors (Beth Wilde) Dir: Graham Moore BBC: Extras II (3 Episodes - Makeup Woman) Dir: Ricky Gervais/Stephen Merchant ITV: The Last Detective (Kitty Sullivan) Dir: Martyn Friend BBC: EastEnders (8 Episodes - Amanda Parry) Dir: Various BBC: Doctors (Karen Rees) Dir: Michael-Baig Clifford ITV: Steel River Blues (Series 1 - Belinda Moss) Dir: Graeme Harper/Tim Dowd Valentine for ITV: In Deep (2 Episodes - Katy Gannon) Dir: Colin Bucksey BBC: Murder In Mind (Sandra) Dir: Frank Smith Anglia for ITV: Where The Heart Is (Julia Joyce) Dir: Moira Armstrong BBC: Badger (Amanda) Dir: Paul Harrison BBC: Doctors (Celia Cobb) Dir: David Kerr BBC: Holby City (Series 2 - Sister Karen Newburn) Dir: Various BBC: Holby City (Series 1 - Sister Karen Newburn) Dir: Various Alamo for BBC: Men Of The World (Laura) Dir: Terry Kinane SelecTV for BBC: Pie In The Sky (Receptionist) Dir: Laurence Gordon Clark Action Time for BBC: Do The Right Thing (Emma) Dir: Bill Anderson
Eva (Rachel) for NTS FilmsDir: Laura Smith Out Done (Sarah) for Canyon Films Dir: Marios Hamboulides Tilly Trotter (Mary Brentwood) for Festival Films Dir: Alan Grint The Glass Virgin (Agnes Fairbairn) for Festival Films Dir: Sarah Hellings The House Of Angelo (Mary / Fight Team) for Tripal Productions Dir: Jim Goddard