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Page last updated at 18:26 GMT, Thursday, 18 February 2010

Albert Square comes to Bradford

Interviewing EastEnders stars to mark the soap's 25th anniversary

School Reporters in West Yorkshire got the chance to meet and ask questions of two members of the EastEnders cast.

The schools involved included Dixons Allerton Academy, Grange Technology College, Immanuel College and Buttershaw College, all in Bradford.

Students from Spen Valley Sports College in Kirklees also attended, and here describe their day.

By Josh, Lily, Shannon, Shauna and Danny
School Reporters from Spen Valley Sports College, Kirklees

We all arrived at school at the unearthly hour of 0745. Some were giggly, some were quiet but one thing we all had in common was the excitement and butterflies in our stomachs.

The taxi arrived just as Miss had got her coffee. Good timing.

Spen Valley students with EastEnders actors Charlie and Himesh
Each student got the chance to ask the actors questions

We arrived at the Media Museum in Bradford at 0928 and were called into a waiting area, and from there we could see the BBC camera.

We were called to the cinema where we were introduced to the format of the day, and watched the first episode of EastEnders.

It was interesting to see how it had changed through the years - different hair cuts, different clothes - many of which are now starting to come back into fashion!

Danny went to film with the BBC for the day. We later found out he had been the producer, and we were all so proud of him.

We then climbed the stairs, more stairs and even more stairs, until we reached what was to be our base for the day.

BBC Radio Leeds gave us some tips on how to do a press conference, which we found really useful and made us think about the questions we would want to ask Charlie Hawkins and Himesh Patel, who play Darren and Tamwar.

By this point, we were getting excited and had started to relax a little bit.

Photos and autographs

We got some really useful hints from BBC Radio Leeds presenter Steve Bailey, and were able to use these to come up with some questions we wanted to ask Charlie and Himesh.

We had done a lot of work in school on questions, and so adapted the questions we had prepared.

We quickly decided on the questions and who was going to ask them. Lily unfortunately got too many butterflies and so Josh agreed to ask her question too.

We then had a working lunch. The area we ate in was fantastic and very futuristic - maybe school dining rooms should look like this.

Students from Spen Valley Sports College in Kirklees
The students put in plenty of preparation for the interviews

During lunch, we saw Danny again. He was busy producing.

Josh was then interviewed for the BBC. Unfortunately, he didn't know all of the answers to the EastEnders quiz, but we did think the "dum dums" from Spen Valley were second to none.

Then the time had come, and we went back to the Cubby Broccoli theatre where Charlie and Himesh were waiting.

As we were one of the first schools in there, we were able to listen in to their conversation. They were funny.

We then had to wait for our names to be called out. When our name was called out we stood up, waited for the microphone and then asked our question.

Josh asked Charlie: "Do you feel a lot of pressure when acting? How do you cope with the pressure?"

Charlie said this was a good question and that he did feel pressure sometimes, especially when he had to do scenes with Barbara Windsor.

After a few other students, Shauna asked Himesh: "One of your interests is creative writing, particularly scripts. If you could write a script for any TV programme, what would it be?" We found out that he had already written a script for Dr Who.

Shannon asked: "How much creative control can you put into the script?" This question was for Himesh, and he said that he could put some of his own character into Tamwar.

Josh got the last question - and he asked Charlie: "If you could be any character in EastEnders who would you be?"

Then came the photo opportunities. Each school had the opportunity to get up, close and personal with Charlie and Himesh.

Many photos and autographs later, and Shauna and Shannon still wanted another photo. Charlie and Himesh were happy to do this.

We had the most amazing day and learnt so much.


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