By Bridie Adams

TV ACTOR Poppy Lee Friar is opening a youth drama school in Ross-on-Wye after gaining the support of John Kyrle High School (JKHS).

Classes will be taught by industry professionals including performers from Ackley Bridge, Poppy Lee Friar and Adam Fielding, who played Missy Booth and Aaron Turner respectively in the Channel 4 drama.

As well as teaching acting skills to youngsters aged seven to 21, the academy will offer opportunities for students to take LAMDA examinations in the future or for filmed work to be used in seeking representation by professional industry agents if appropriate.

Workshops will also be available to everyone on a monthly basis teaching scene study, filmmaking, mind-body connection techniques such as Jiu-Jitsu, stage combat and lectures on the history of acting, philosophy of acting, purpose of theatre and more.


Friar herself began TV acting as a six-year-old, with a part in the show Wilhelmina. Now in her mid-20s, she has starred in Ackley Bridge, In My Skin, Eve and more.

Friar is opening the Herefordshire Academy of Dramatic Art (HADA) in September this year in Ross-on-Wye where she is now based. She said: “I’d really love to offer my experience to children that may be interested in developing acting skills, a career in the entertainment industry or simply improving confidence. I’ve received a lot of enthusiasm, support and advice from all involved here in Ross, Hereford and other local areas.”

Friar added: “I want to provide to the local community first and so want to give the students of JKHS the opportunity. There will be limited availability as I want to maintain an intimate class size of around 15 to 20 students. I am open to teaching various ages.”

The HADA will be based at John Kyrle High School from September. Email for information on free trial sessions.