LITTLE schoolgirl Isabella Hibbert has launched her TV acting career in prime-time Channel 4 soap Hollyoaks - aged just five.

Isabella, who attends East Crompton St James CE Primary School in Shaw and trains at weekends at the Pauline Quirk Academy of Performing Arts, based at Tottington High School, near Bury, appeared on screen for the first time on Monday (September 2).

She is playing Steph Cunningham, the daughter of the long-standing character Tom Cunningham, played by Ellis Hollins. Isabella started filming in July.

Isabella said: "I love being in Hollyoaks and have made lots of new friends there already. My 'mum' and 'Dad' there are the best ever!

"It is super exciting and I never want to leave when the day is over. I watch Hollyoaks every night with my mummy and when I pop up on the opening titles we both say 'there she is' and smile.

"I cannot wait to see more of my scenes on the telly and to get more filming done. There are a lot of people who have been waiting to watch me. I hope they will like it and can be proud and happy with me.”

Isabella’s mother, Chelsea Hibbert, said: “Isabella has always been a very confident and outgoing little girl with the most amazing quirky personality.

"She started at the Pauline Quirke Academy aged four and just loved it from day one. I pinch myself every single day that she has landed herself such a huge role at just five years old - she has no idea how truly amazing that really is.

"Watching her on set and seeing how much she enjoys it all just fills me with pride, she was born to be a star for sure!

"She absolutely loves being on the Hollyoaks set; everyone is so lovely with her and she just takes everything in her stride. I am so excited to watch her in action on the screen as she grows within her character, Steph, and to see what the future holds for her on Hollyoaks. I’m the proudest mummy on the planet.”

Isabella is represented by Quirky Kidz Creative Management, an agency that exclusively represents PQA students.

Kristie Sicolo, head of Quirky Kidz Creative Management, said: “When we found out that Isabella had landed the role, we were over the moon; we knew she’d be perfect for it and it’s been amazing to see her confidence flourish over the weeks of filming. We’re really proud of Isabella and thrilled that she’s having the experience of a lifetime.”