An East Renfrewshire actor is to appear in a primetime Christmas television drama alongside Line of Duty star Martin Compston.

Matt Littleson, from Uplawmoor, landed a major role in two-part BBC mini-series Mayflies, which also stars Tony Curran and Ashley Jensen.

It is an adaptation of the best-selling novel by Scottish author Andrew O’Hagan and was filmed in Glasgow and Ayrshire earlier this year.

Matt, 27, graduated from Mountview Drama School, in London, where he won the prestigious Lilian Baylis Prize, in 2019.

He had previously attended PACE Theatre School, in Paisley, which also launched the careers of Hollywood stars such as James McAvoy and Richard Madden.

After leaving Eastwood High School, in Newton Mearns, he did a three-year drama course at Langside College, in Glasgow.

He then moved south to complete his studies at Mountview, financed by money from a Donald Dewar scholarship.

Matt plays the character Limbo in Mayflies, which tells the story of a 30-year friendship between the two central characters, played by Compston and Curran.

The former Uplawmoor Primary pupil also has a part in an upcoming Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg Second World War mini-series called Masters of the Air.

His proud mum Lindsay, who has three other grown-up children, is a best-selling writer of children’s books and still lives in Uplawmoor.

She revealed that, despite his success, Matt still has to work in a bar near his home in the Crystal Palace area of London to pay the bills.

“I am very proud of what he has done and the resilience he has shown,” said Lindsay, who is a former primary school teacher. “The whole family are thrilled.

“Matt has had to work very hard to get to where he is now, as acting is a tough life.

“He graduated just before the pandemic and was then furloughed from his bar job.

“However, he never gave up hope and, finally, things are beginning to take off for him.”

Lindsay also thanked drama teachers at Eastwood High for setting Matt on the road to success.

Matt got the part in Mayflies after the producers saw him in a short film he had made.

The first episode will be shown on BBC Scotland at 10pm on Tuesday, December 27, with episode two being aired on the same channel at 10pm the following night.

Mayflies will also be broadcast across the UK on BBC One, with the first episode to be shown at 9pm on Wednesday, December 28, followed by the second part at the same time on Thursday, December 29.