A FORMER Hollyoaks and Celebrity Love Island star has created a drama group to help give those struggling with addiction, mental health issues, and more a sense of community.

Paul Danan, who played Sol Patrick in the Hollyoaks drama series and appeared as a contestant in ITV's Celebrity Love Island, was inspired to set up the Morning After Drama group following his own experiences with neurodiversity and recovery.

The Morning After Drama website explains the organisation's beginnings: "Morning After Drama is the brainchild of Paul Danan and a collective of passionate specialist recovery and mental health workers and producers.

"During the first lockdown of the COVID pandemic in 2020, Paul launched a drama workshop in Bristol that was aimed at supporting the mental health and positive life development of people in active recovery at a time when isolation was having an impact on so many.

"Morning After Drama specialises in supporting people who have experienced trauma, been involved with the criminal justice system, suffered from addiction, poor mental health and negative relationships with themselves and others to (re)discover who they are.

"By providing a specifically focused, accessible and non-judgmental opportunity, we engage with groups of individuals with similar experiences to bring them gently out from the shadows."

The organisation has a linked charity, called The Other Side of Morning (CIC number 15131830). You can donate to the cause on its Go Fund Me page.

Weston Mercury: Drama group.Drama group. (Image: Paul Danan)

The group also meets every Wednesday in Weston, from 5pm at The Stable.

Paul explained to the Weston Mercury how important the work is and how the performance sessions provide a good alternative to traditional addiction and recovery meetings.

Those recovering from trauma or who are on probation are also very much welcome.

Paul said: "This is my calling.

"It provides a community, since connection is the opposite to addiction.

"It gives people a healthy escape."

Building confidence is also a huge part of the group's objectives. Paul explained how he has witnessed two women becoming more and more confident since they started attending the sessions around two years ago.

Paul said that the group is currently "overflowing" and that there is a possibility that a second group could be set up, depending on numbers.