Budding Leeds actor talks of her challenging first TV role as serial killer Rose West

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An aspiring actor has told how she was cherry picked to audition for her maiden TV role because she “looks like a young Rose West”.

Cara Wilson, who lives in Chapel Allerton, had been working backstage for Opera North when an old drama group contact called her and asked her to audition for a new documentary drama based on notorious killers Fred and Rose West.

The 27-year-old attended the audition and got the part, acting in dramatic reconstructions for the three-part production ‘When Fred Met Rose’ that is currently being screened on Channel 5.

The documentary includes interviews with family members and those close to the couple to find out how their early lives might have played a part in their killing spree.

Cara, who plays Rose in the series, said: “An old friend got in touch and said ‘I hate to break it to you but you look like a young Rose West’. You have to take these things on the chin. To get into character I had to do quite a lot of reading, and reading some quite horrible, grim details.”

During six months of filming, Cara researched the history of their crimes, which left the nation in shock when they were uncovered in the mid 1990s.

Fred West was charged with 12 murders, but committed suicide at Winson Green jail in Birmingham before his trial. Rose West was convicted of 10 murders in November 1995 and is still serving life in prison.

At the Wests’ infamous 25 Cromwell Street home in Gloucester nine bodies were discovered following an inquiry into the disappearance of their eldest daughter.

“When you really know what they were actually capable of, the true depravity of the awful things they did to the girls they murdered, it makes you feel sick,” Cara added. “It’s important to remember the victims rather than the infamy of the two of them.”

The second instalment of When Fred Met Rose will screen on Channel 5 on Thursday at 10pm. Visit www.channel5.com.

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