TO say there wasn’t a dry eye in the house may sound like a cliche.

But it certainly wasn’t far from the truth when up-and-coming writer/director Nick Connor premiered his film, Cotton Wool, at Oldham’s Odeon Cinema on Sunday.

The first screening in front of a full house of family, friends, film fans and the cast and crew themselves was particularly special for Nick, from Royton, who adores his roots and has an unstoppable ambition to give the north more of a cinematic platform.

Hard-hitting and emotive, 18-year-old Nick’s third short film features a perfect blend of established and admired TV and film actors alongside some exciting young talent including eight-year-old Max Vento - currently starring as “Joe” in BBC1’s The A Word - and 19-year-old Katie Quinn, who appeared in Nick’s previous films “Think of Me” and “Northern Lights”.

Dedicated to stroke survivors and the 243,000 young carers currently looking after family in England and Wales with 22,000 under the age of nine, Cotton Wool was inspired by the grandmother he never knew who died following a stroke when his mum, Geraldine, was just 10 years old.

Set in Barkisland, West Yorkshire, the story follows hardworking, single mum, Rachel (Leanne Best) who is struggling to cope with stroppy teenage daughter, Jennifer (Katie) and seven-year-old son, Sam (Max).

Their world is turned upside when Rachel is left wheelchair-bound following a devastating stroke and and young Sam ends up looking after her after Jennifer seemingly turns her back on the family.

Leanne - best known for her roles in Cold Feet, Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Line of Duty and Ripper Street - comes across brilliantly as a young woman locked inside an incapable body, ashamedly having to rely on her children to help cope. After the screening she spoke of how her involvement was “one of those really funny life things” saying she was on the way to hospital visit a friend who had suffered a stroke when her agent called her about the film.

She spoke of her admiration for Nick and how the whole crew pulled together for the five-day, low budget shoot.

“When they told me the writer is very young I was imagining he was 24 or something but when I found out Nick was 17, as he was at the time, I was amazed,” said Leanne.

“I said “yes” straight away. That was a plus for me.

“When I met Nick I was struck by how passionate and intelligent he is.

“There was something glorious about meeting someone so passionate and inspired by the work he is doing.

“There is a wonderful quality to Nick’s writing and that comes across beautifully in this film.”

Max is adorable as Sam who witnesses his mum’s stroke in the brutal opening minutes of the film and is then, terrifyingly, often left alone to care for her as his sister forsakes them for her friends.

Katie plays the complicated, sulky, selfish teen role to a tee but it’s such a relief when she sees the error of her ways - thanks to the wise and kind words of Marion (actress Kate Rutter) - and the scenes when she reunites with her mum and brother are both teary and heart-warming.

Nick said: “The premiere ran brilliantly. It was great to finally share the film with a public audience and also the cast and crew - especially in my home town, Oldham.

“It was an incredible feeling to have the film on the big screen as that’s always where it was always intended to be seen. The Oldham Town Hall Odeon was the perfect setting for me to share a very personal film with a local audience.”

The film, made by Oldham-born producer Mark Quinn’s Cherwell Productions, is now heading for the festival circuit and has already attracted real critical acclaim, citing Nick as a Ken Loach in the making.