Alex Kingston slapped a child during Marchlands filming

Alex Kingston has admitted that she accidentally “hit” a child on the set of new ITV drama ‘Marchlands’.

The ‘Doctor Who’ actress – who plays fraught mum Helen Maynard in the supernatural ITV1 series – confessed that she got caught up in an emtoional scene, in which she lashes out at her young daughter Amy (Sydney Wade) after suspecting she had left the bath running as a practical joke.

She told BANG Showbiz: “We’d had a stunt guy in to absolutely make sure I wouldn’t hurt Sydney in any way when I was smacking her. Needless to say, the first time we actually shot it something had happened with the water and I was really frustrated. I turned around and Sydney was there and I accidentally hit her.

“I felt terrible! She was a total professional and didn’t burst into tears until the director said cut. It was so awful, but it ended up being the take we eventually used. Every time I was near her in scenes after that I’d so much as raise my hand and she was gone.”

However, with the upcoming drama premiere documenting the lives of three different families from the 1960s through to the present day – linked by the spirit of a young girl who died in a shroud of mystery – Alex admitted she found some of her character’s scenes particularly harrowing.

She added: “Walking in to a bathroom and seeing what you think is your daughter drowning in a bath is something no parent should have to experience.

“I don’t know if perhaps the themes explored within the family are more resonant if you’re a parent, but not being able to get through to any child is going to affect you and be absolutely appalling for anyone involved.