Rachel Adedeji receives support from 'Hollyoaks' co-star after speaking out about on-set racism

Danny Thompson
·Contributor
·2-min read
Rachel Adedeji attending the British Soap Awards 2017 at The Lowry, Salford, Manchester. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Saturday 3 June, 2017. See PA Story SHOWBIZ Soap. Photo credit should read: Matt Crossick/PA Wire (Photo by Matt Crossick/PA Images via Getty Images)
Rachel Adedeji at the British Soap Awards 2017 in Salford, Greater Manchester. (Matt Crossick/PA Images via Getty Images)

A former co-star of Rachel Adedeji has supported the actress after she spoke out about racism on the set of Channel 4 soap Hollyoaks.

Amanda Clapham, who played character Holly Cunningham on the soap, has posted an open letter to senior Hollyoaks staff in support of Adedeji, who played Lisa Loveday.

Adedeji took exception when the show posted comments supporting the Black Lives Matter movement that she labelled “disingenuous”.

Read more: Hollyoaks says it is investigating actress’s racism claims

Posting on social media, the actress highlighted incidents of racism she had been subject and witness to while working on the show, including being told “you’re all the same” by a make-up artist, and claimed black cast members were referred to as “blackies” by a member of the production team.

She also pointed out that she worked with only one black director in four years on the show.

LONDON, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 06:  Amanda Clapham attends the Inside Soap Awards held at The Hippodrome on November 6, 2017 in London, England.  (Photo by Mike Marsland/Mike Marsland/WireImage)
Amanda Clapham at the Inside Soap Awards 2017 in London, England. (Mike Marsland/Mike Marsland/WireImage)

Posting on Sunday, Clapham addressed the issue, saying she had witnessed more than one incident.

She wrote: "I hope you respond by apologising to Rachel.

"I want you to say that you are going to improve by proactively making changes within the building in each department. It's a conversation that needs to be had.

"I was on set with Rachel not long after she joined the show and a makeup artists brought out a face powder for her. The powder had 'dark' written on it and was two shades darker than Rachel's skin complexion.

"When she asked if she could have the correct powder to match her skin tone, she was told no and that was all they had."

She added: "The future of Hollyoaks can and should be better for all people of colour. As a company you can all work on that together."

In a statement on Hollyoaks‘ official Instagram page over the weekend, producers said: “Hollyoaks has zero tolerance on racism. We are taking Rachel Adedeji extremely seriously and are investigating.”

A Channel 4 spokeswoman said: “Hollyoaks has zero tolerance on racism and an investigation is underway.”