It’s been a difficult few months for Coronation Street’s onscreen couple Sinead Tinker and Daniel Osborne as we’ve watched the couple struggle with Sinead’s cervical cancer diagnosis after discovering that she was also pregnant.
After months of turmoil – and some very emotional scenes where Sinead saw her new born baby Bertie for the first time over Facetime as she was too unwell to leave her bed – Corrie fans were delighted when Sinead completed her treatment in last week’s episodes.
In the build up to the shocking storyline, the Corrie pair have been working alongside Manchester-based charity Mummy’s Star, who offer support and advice to women and families diagnosed with cancer in or around pregnancy.
We spoke to actress Katie McGlynn ahead of the run next month.
Tell us about your involvement with Mummy’s Star
Me and Rob met Pete Wallroth, the founder of Mummy’s Star, via our research team at Corrie for our pregnancy and cancer storyline. We quickly become patrons for the charity as it was something close to our hearts after working on these tragic circumstances. We’re just actors, so we really wanted to try and make a difference to the people really going through it. We want to create as much awareness as possible to help women and their families going through it.
Who’s idea was it to sign up to the Simplyhealth Great Manchester Run?
It was Pete Wallroth, the founder of Mummy’s Star, who actually suggested it. The 10K is a great way of raising money/awareness as it is a challenge for anyone in that heat – and believe me, I know. I did it last year and wasn’t sure if I was going to make it!
How have you and Rob been preparing?
Neither of us are runners. I run like Phoebe from Friends, so I’ve not been going very far in case I get an injury. I’m quite clumsy. And last time I went for a run I lost my house keys in the process and had to run all the way back again to find them – lucky nobody had picked them up. I am, however, quite into my fitness and I go weight training and do stints of cardio – but I’m certainly not a runner. And Rob’s been swimming and doing some short fast runs to prepare.
Have you done anything like this before?
I did the 10K run last year for the first time and actually really enjoyed training. The day was fun but really hard because it gets so hot! I swore to myself I’d never do it again, but here I am!
How long did it take you last year and what did you run it for?
It took me over an hour. I ran it for Spring Hill Hospice who looked after my Grandad who passed away from prostate cancer – and they also looked after my friend’s Dad too while he had prostate cancer, so it was another really important charity for me.
Why is it important that people donate?
Mummy’s Star is only a small charity and they have a limited number of staff. They need as many donations and as much funding as possible to continue the amazing work they do. The amount of women that are going through cancer while pregnant or around pregnancy has doubled from last year, with two women a day getting diagnosed – which is just a terrifying figure.
How difficult has it been playing a character who has cancer while pregnant and how has it affected you personally?
It has been a real challenge I’m not going to lie, you do get wrapped up in it all whilst filming. However I just think I get to go home and be Katie again knowing that it’s not real, I’m just an actress. Whereas real women out there are going through it every day. It’s heartbreaking but it’s the reason why I became a patron for the charity, to try and help any way that I can.
What advice would you give to someone who may be going through this?
I would say certainly ask for help and advice from charities like Mummy’s Star – and of course seek help and support from your loved ones. Also if you were in a predicament like sinead having to decide between treatment or having a baby, there’s no right or wrong answer to that, it’s entirely your decision as a person/mother. And whatever your choice, it’s not something you should feel ashamed of.
What would you say to someone who’s thinking of signing up for the run?
I’d say, woohoo! Definitely do it. Yes, it’s a challenge, but it is doable, even if you walk it. Rob doesn’t go to the gym regularly, but he’s taking part this year and has just been doing bits of training on his own. So many people sign up who aren’t deemed as runners – it’s an amazing day with a great atmosphere and all for a good cause. Sign the heck up and help support amazing charities like Mummy’s Star in the process!