LINE of Duty actor Gregory Piper and fellow TV star Rebecca Fuller have taken over the running of Stourbridge's Dramaworkshop where they first cut their teeth.

The successful TV stars, who both graduated through Dramaworkshop before becoming professional actors, have taken over the reins from award-winning actress, writer, producer and director Esther Stanford who had run the popular drama group for the last 10 years.

Esther set up Dramaworkshop in 2010 with the aim of providing the same opportunities she had enjoyed through attending ITV Workshop in Birmingham - a chance for youngsters to step into careers on stage and screen.

Since then she has seen her protégés win parts in productions, including Line Of Duty, Doctors and Raised By Wolves. Many have progressed to top drama schools and work as professional actors.

Esther said: "It has been a joy to run Dramaworkshop over the last 10 years. We have had the most wonderful experiences.

"I always knew the day would come when I would hand the reins over and I hoped I would be able to pass it on to someone who had been through the workshop so I'm delighted to be able to hand it over to Rebecca and Gregory.

“They couldn't be more perfect and will take Dramaworkshop, and the opportunities it offers its members, to the next level."

Gregory, from Halesowen, has appeared in BBC productions Line Of Duty and Frankie. He has won a Royal Television Society award and is nominated for a BAFTA this year for his character Ryan Pilkington’s murder of gang leader John Corbett (played by Stephen Graham) in Line of Duty.

The award will be determined by a public vote. Fans of Gregory or the show can vote online at Voting closes at 5pm tomorrow (Wednesday July 15).

Gregory said: "It's brilliant to be nominated for a BAFTA Must See Moment. Line Of Duty has an insanely talented cast, crew and company that put it all together and it is great to see that being recognised.

"I feel very lucky to have been part of it and to be surrounded by these incredible people.

"It's crazy to be in a scene that's nominated alongside some of my favourite TV moments of the year and I'm really proud of the show."

Rebecca from Dudley has appeared in Raised By Wolves and several theatre productions and, along with Gregory, was a representative for the National Theatre tour of Macbeth.

She said: “Dramaworkshop has been a part of both of our lives for the past 10 years and it’s because of our training there that we’re both lucky enough to be pursuing careers as professional actors.

“We now have the confidence and knowledge to be directors of Dramaworkshop. It has offered us professional training in a safe environment."

Dramaworkshop runs classes for young people aged seven to 18 and it also runs an adult class, which started in January.

Meanwhile, Esther plans to continue her work as a writer and actress and is working on a television series and film that are currently in pre-production.