Sarah (Jodie Comer) is a young woman whose fiery exterior hides a wounded soul. In and out of Pupil Referral Units as a teen, her family told her she’d never amount to anything. But finding her job at Bright Sky Homes and, more importantly, meeting Tony changes her life forever. He shows her the power she has to make the residents’ lives better, that she’s good at something truly important. Through caring for Tony in the midst of a catastrophe she finally finds herself.
Tony (Stephen Graham) has Young Onset Alzheimer’s which was hidden by his overbearing mother until her death. Now left without family, Tony is living out his days in care as his mind slowly deteriorates. He’s good natured with a cheeky sense of humor, but his disease and makes him unpredictable and sometimes aggressive. Sarah is the only one who can calm him. And together they form a bond of care that sees them perform extraordinary acts.
Steve (Ian Hart) is the manager/owner of Bright Sky Care Home. He inherited the home from his mother, who founded the home and was herself a resident there, under Steve’s care before she passed away. Having spent his life in and around the business, he knows the home inside out, and is a decent, well meaning professional manager. Although he tries his best under challenging circumstances, he doesn’t have the natural touch and passion for the job that his mother did.
Tori (Angela Griffin) is another of Bright Sky’s care assistants. Tori is experienced and deeply caring of the residents. She’s a bit less by the book than Tim, and a bit more likely to express her displeasure at the residents when they’re making her life hard. But her informality belies a deep empathy which makes her brilliant at her job.
Bob (Andrew Schofield) Bob is the father and undisputed alpha male of the Berner family. An old fashioned, working class Liverpudlian, from a family of dockers, but times have been tough for Bob and his family. Chronic back problems have kept him out of work. Since she was very young he has always been particularly harsh on his daughter Sarah. If he suspects that her challenging behavior has anything to do with his parenting, he doesn’t show it.
Gaynor (Lesley Sharpe) is Sarah’s mum. She loves her daughter like any good mother does. But she’s not a brave woman, and has been cowed by her overbearing husband. She wants the best for Sarah, but when it comes down to it she will always choose peace in the household over what’s right for her daughter.
Robbie (Ellis Howard) is Sarah’s younger brother. He learned his arrogance and entitlement from his father, as well as how to show his sister no respect. When the crisis hits, Robbie feels like he has a right to break lockdown rules.
Tim (Arthur Hughes) is of the senior care assistants at Bright Sky. He’s experienced and professional. He knows the job like the back of his hand and will put his concerns curtly to Steve when he thinks they aren’t getting the support they need.
Kenny (Steve Garti) - Kenny is a large and larger than life Liverpudlian in his 70s. he’s Tony’s best friend in the home and the pair share a cheeky sense of humour and a passion for all things Liverpool FC.
Graham (Mike Noble) is Kenny’s son. A doting son who is conflicted about leaving his father in the home during the outbreak.
Gloria (Sue Johnstone) – An older English lady of good manners with dementia. At times Gloria finds the realities of living in care challenging, sometimes feeling shame at her loss of capacity. She needs to be treated with dignity.
Hercules (David Hayman) is an older man with dementia. He’s fun and a real character, but his condition means he does lose his temper with the staff and is left incredibly distressed with the onset of the virus.
Joan (Jackie Knowes) is Hercules’s daughter. She’s very committed to her father and regularly visits, until the pandemic hits.
Polly (Cathy Tyson) - Polly was an English teacher all her life. Her dementia means that she’s largely lost touch with reality, but she still has perfect recall of songs and poetry that stream continuously from her, making her a lyrical and joyful presence in the home.