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Friday, 23 March, 2001, 12:41 GMT
Sweeney 'offered ITV show'
Clare Sweeney
Clare Sweeney was runner-up of celebrity Big Brother
Brookside star Claire Sweeney has been offered a deal with ITV after impressing TV chiefs with her Celebrity Big Brother performance, according to reports.

The actress has been offered a 250,000 deal to host a primetime show on ITV, according to The Mirror.

Actress Claire Sweeney leaving the Big Brother house
Sweeney: All smiles after Big Brother
The newspaper says she will front Challenge of a Lifetime, a spin off from Don't Try This at Home, which will not return after its current run.

A London Weekend Television spokeswoman told BBC News Online: "We cannot confirm Claire Sweeney will be the presenter of our new programme Challenge of a Lifetime."

But the spokeswoman said the channel was looking for a new presenter and the soap actress was thought to have been approached to join the show when her contract on Brookside runs out in October.

Don't Try This At Home will not return after the current series because presenter Davina McCall is pregnant.

Ironically, McCall was the host of the final episode of Celebrity Big Brother, as well as the original series on Channel 4.

Dangerous stunts

The spokeswoman added: "We cannot ask Davina to front Challenge of a Lifetime when she is four months pregnant.

"I don't think she would want to be dangling out of a helicopter."

Don't Try This At Home, screened on Saturdays, shows viewers attempting to perform dangerous stunts, as well confronting their fears.

Sweeney is believed to have been lined up present the new format, which will concentrate on viewers' challenges, which in the past have included wing walking and stunt car driving.

Davina McCall
Davina McCall: Her pregnancy forced ITV to drop her show
"This is a completely new show, based around one element from Don't Try This At Home," said the spokeswoman, adding that the way was still open for Davina to return..

Sweeney impressed viewers with her singing on Big Brother.

The former cabaret singer has made no secret of her desire to perform in musicals on the West End stage.

Celebrity Big Brother generated a huge amount of publicity for Sweeney and her fellow housemates.

She was the runner-up in the Comic Relief special edition of the programme, losing out to comedian Jack Dee.

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See also:

16 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Big Brother's Craig still in spotlight
08 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Big Brother scores hat-trick
15 Feb 01 | Entertainment
Celebrity Big Brother launched
12 Nov 00 | Entertainment
Mel's Big Brother anger
15 Mar 01 | Entertainment
Turner next to leave Big Brother
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