'Waterloo Road' has seen some major changes to its teaching staff over the last few series. With the legendary Tom Clarkson, played by Jason Done, leaving at the end of the eighth series and Philip Martin Brown departing as Grantly Budgen at some point during the upcoming ninth series, it would appear that we'll soon be facing an entirely new set of staff.
Apart from Heather Peace's character, none of the other teaching staff had appeared before the eighth series. The writers seemed to tackle this by recently making Melanie Hill's Maggie a Home Economics teacher in order to bring some familiarity to the school's staff. Of course, it wasn't plausible that the entire cast would want to follow the show in its move to Scotland, but one character who did for some time was the loveable Chalky, played by Mark Benton.
Benton appeared as Daniel Chalky through the seventh series and relocated with the show for the first two terms of the eighth series. Following his departure from the show, he appeared in the UK tour of 'Hairspray' portraying Edna Turnblad, however, he was very vocal about missing 'Waterloo Road' after filming his final scenes.
Daniel Chalky was one of the most loveable characters on the show; he entered the school as somewhat of an oddball and was easy pickings for some of his more rebellious pupils but they eventually came to respect him and see him as a mentor. His unexpected friendship with Janeece Bryant (Chelsee Healey) left us with some of the most comedic, and dramatic, scenes of the series but the most memorable have to be when he adopted Kevin Skelton (Tommy Knight) and emotionally revealed he was abused in his care home as a child.
Fans of the show went into overdrive on Twitter when Melanie Hill let slip that Benton would be back on the show and that she was "happy" to have him back on set. When fans quizzed about his reprisal on the show, Hill teased that "he will be [back] but for how long?" As she also stated that she would be sad to say goodbye to him again, it's unlikely that he will be back for an extended stay, but his reappearance is exciting nonetheless.
It is thought that his return could be connected to Kevin as he made it clear that when he left he would be "on the first train up" if he finds there has been any trouble. Although little has been confirmed about his return, we can be sure that it will be for a storyline full of drama that will undoubtedly feature some sentimental moments with his adopted son.
Are you excited to see the return of Daniel Chalk?
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