Hope Street's Niall Wright: I'm marrying the girl of my dreams

Gail Bell asks experts and people in the public eye what keeps them going. This week, Hope Street actor, Niall Wright

Hope Street actor Niall Wright
Hope Street actor Niall Wright

Up and at it - what is your morning routine?

If I'm not working, I get up and take the dog out for a walk in our local park each morning. That routine clears my head and sets me up nicely for the day ahead.


What might you eat in a typical working day for...

Breakfast? Breakfast usually consists of some sort of cereal or maybe porridge with a bit of banana and some honey, followed by toast and cupán tae – all consumed while watching Sky Sports News.


Lunch would probably be a sandwich and a coffee if I'm on 'the go', but if I'm up at home, I whack up the eggs, beans, avocado and spinach – and keep it lean.

Evening meal?

For dinner, it is whatever my amazing personal chef - my fiancée – cooks up.


Is nutrition important to you – do you take health supplements?

Yes, nutrition is important to me. As I've got older, I've become more aware of what I'm putting into my body. After exercising and going to the gym, I would be conscious of getting the right amount of protein in my body so I would take a protein shake and eat the correct type of food to allow my body to recover properly.


Ever been on a diet – if so, how did it go?

I have not been on a diet. I did try to go 'veggie' once - it lasted two weeks and I would consider that a 'diet' because I always felt hungry. I was unsure about how to replace certain foods, so I would need to do some reading up before trying that again.


Weekend treat?

A takeaway - usually a Chinese meal or pizza.


How do you keep physically and mentally fit?

I like to exercise - I grew up playing a lot of sport. I usually go the gym two or three times a week and I also play soccer for a team called London Hibernian FC. Keeping myself active allows me to stay physically fit and in turn helps with the mental side of things. I think it's important to maintain an overall state of wellbeing.


Best tip for everyday fitness?

Consistency is key. Trying to keep up a weekly routine will make it easier in the long run. Setting some goals, too, allows you to work towards them and feel a sense of achievement when you get there.


Were you a fan of schools sports/PE or do you have a memory from those days that you would rather forget?

I was a big fan... I played every sport going in school, from soccer to hurling and from football to tennis. I have a lot of fond memories of my time playing in the school teams. I did lose the P7 sprint race, having won it every other year... so that is a memory that runs deep and one to forget.


Teetotal or tipple?



Stairs or lift?



What book are you currently reading?

At the moment, I am reading Brendan O'Leary's Making Sense Of A United Ireland. He explores the issues around a possible reunification and I would highly recommend it. It's a must-read for anyone who thinks seriously about the future of Ireland.


Best Netflix?

I just finished The Watcher. I don't usually like horror stuff, but this was great. And what makes it more terrifying is the fact it is based on true events.


Most surprising thing you've learned about yourself over the pandemic?

How much I rely on routine and having a schedule when I'm in and out of work. I also learned how discipline is really important.


Any new skills or hobbies?

I have found myself playing a lot more golf these days. As the footballer dream fades, I enjoy the social aspect of a round of golf. And the pints after...


How do you relax?

I like to listen to music or binge on a new TV series. Walking the dog also helps me to get my thoughts together and just relax.


What are your goals for 2023?

To marry the girl of my dreams - I'm getting married in January, so that will be an amazing way to kick off 2023. Onwards and upwards...


What time do you get to bed and do you think you get enough sleep?

I would usually get to bed around 10.30pm or 11pm. And I do need my eight hours in order to operate, so I make sure I get enough sleep.


Biggest gripe or regret?

Living in London, a big gripe of mine is when people all pile on the tube before you have had a chance to get off. Just have some manners. And, in the words of N-Dubz, 'No Regrets'.


Have your priorities in life or perspectives changed?

I think the importance of family and friends has been even more highlighted for me. Getting to spend quality time with the people you love should be appreciated and not taken for granted. In a world where instant gratification is the norm and everything is at our fingertips, the virtue of patience seems long lost. So, I'm learning to take a step back at times and understand and enjoy the 'now'.


Has coronavirus changed your attitude towards your own mortality?

I don't think it has changed my attitude towards my own mortality, as naive as that might sound for a 30-something-year-old. But it has certainly reminded me that no matter how youthful or fit you are, life can be short and we should do our best to live it.

:: Niall Wright reprises his role as Callum McCarthy in Hope Street, Series 2, which started back this week. The series airs on BBC One Northern Ireland on Mondays and can also be viewed on BBC iPlayer.