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Australian soap - English water.

Stars of the Australian soap opera Home and Away will forsake the sundrenched beaches of their homeland to film a special episode on location in the historic Shropshire town of Ironbridge, next week.

Four characters from the popular ITV show will be involved in the episode, set in and around The lronbridge Gorge Museum.

The soap stars' trip to the Midlands comes as flood alerts continue along many rivers but at least the actors should enjoy unseasonally mild conditions.

Tempany Deckert who stars as Selina, Lynne McGranger (Irene), Adam Willits (Steven) and Emily Symons (Marilyn), will arrive on Monday to begin filming the one-off episode.

An ITV Network spokesman said the trip has posed problems for the show's wardrobe department who have scoured Australia for fake fur coats.

An Australian who runs Ironbridge's oldest pub, the Golden Ball Inn, said he was looking forward to extending a warm welcome to the cast.

Mr David Heery said: "I would love to have them here for a drink. I've got Fosters on tap to make them feel at home."

Ironbridge Gorge Museum spokeswoman Ms Glenys Espley said she hoped the flooding which closed the High Street of the town earlier this week did not return while the filming took place.

She said: "We are just praying that the River Severn does not flood. Last week, we were all under water when it broke its banks."

Yesterday, Birmingham Weather Centre reported it was close to recording its highest ever January temperatures.

"The highest January temperature ever recorded was 14.1C (57.4F) in 1983 and today we had 13.4C (56F) recorded at Birmingham International Airport," said Mr Dave Elliot.

Despite the balmy conditions, red alerts were still in operation on parts of the River Severn at Shrewsbury, Worcester and Gloucester.
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Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:Jan 10, 1998
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