Former Emmerdale star Roxanne Pallett has told how she experienced repeated incidents of sexual misconduct while working in theatre.
The actress, who played Jo Sugden in the ITV soap for three years, said she tried to speak out about her ordeals but her complaints were dismissed.
She told the Daily Star newspaper: “I’ve experienced several incidents of inappropriate comments and actions towards me in my career, both sexually and mentally.
“I was told by a stage manager that he had masturbated over pictures of me. On another occasion I was groped by a crew member by the side of the stage.
“I turned to an older actress for support and she actually told me sternly to ‘leave it’ and not cause a scene, so I felt very alone and almost like I was perceived as being oversensitive when my gut instinct told me otherwise.”
Pallett, 34, has also appeared in TV shows Casualty and Waterloo Road and this year featured as a panellist in Len Goodman’s Partners In Rhyme.
After sharing her own story, she commended the wave of women who have recently come forward with their experiences of sexual misconduct in the acting industry, following a series of allegations against disgraced movie mogul Harvey Weinstein.
Hitting out at people who have “hushed” her in the past, she commented: “The surge of actresses coming forward and sharing their stories of abuse is a relief and breaks the taboo which we have all been dealing with.”
Weinstein has “unequivocally denied” allegations of non-consensual sex.