Page last updated at 15:35 GMT, Monday, 14 December 2009

Hollyoaks pull 'James Bulger storyline'

Hollyoaks' Melissa Walton
Melissa Walton plays Loretta Jones in the Chester-set soap

The makers of Channel 4 soap Hollyoaks have agreed to change upcoming scenes following a complaint that they bore similarities to the James Bulger case.

A future plot was to have revealed two characters had been living under false names after bullying a child to death.

But when the mother of murdered toddler James Bulger complained, production company Lime Pictures "agreed to amend certain aspects of the storyline."

Denise Fergus said she was "grateful that they are respecting my wishes".

"I made it clear that I did not want those scenes broadcast and I'm pleased to say they clearly understood my feelings," she told independent news website Click Liverpool.

'Good track record'

The scenes were to have involved the Loretta Jones character, played by Melissa Walton, and an old friend named Chrissy.

"Hollyoaks has a very good track record of tackling difficult subject matter for a younger audience and the producers take seriously their duty to deal with sensitive issues in an appropriate way," said a Lime Pictures spokesman.

"This particular storyline was not based on any real-life case and was not intended to recreate actual events."

Two-year-old James Bulger was killed by two 10-year-old schoolboys after being abducted in a Merseyside shopping centre in 1993.

His killers, Robert Thompson and Jon Venables, were released from detention in 2001 and given new identities and addresses.

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ITN Hollyoaks scraps 'Bulger' style storyline - 1 hr ago
Sky TV Hollyoaks Drops Child Killer Plot - 4 hrs ago
Sky News TV Soap Scenes Cut Over Bulger Case - 10 hrs ago
Ananova Hollyoaks Scenes Cut Over Bulger Killing - 16 hrs ago
The Independent Hollyoaks axes 'child killers' plot - 23 hrs ago

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