SOAP star Helen Flanagan has hit out after being criticised for posting a photograph of herself pointing a gun to her head on Twitter just days after 26 people were killed at a school in America.

The former Westholme School pupil claimed she was being bullied by the press for uploading the picture, which was used on the front page of the Sun with the headline ‘brainless’.

The 22-year-old Coronation Street actress first posted the picture, which is from a series of lingerie shots, in October, but uploaded it again on Monday, the day of the first funerals of the victims of the massacre at the Sandy Hook school in Connecticut.

The photograph was later removed.

The I’m A Celebrity...Get me out of Here star took to Twitter again yesterday claiming she was being bullied.

She posted: “Honestly I've got tears streaming down my face how can you do that to someone over something so tragic #feelsick can't believe I woke up.

“Anyone who knows me knows I have the biggest heart.... I feel really chocked up that’s so cruel.

“I am absolutely disgusted in this. Completely cruel. I will absolutely NOT stand for this kind of bullying.

“I've just been crying to my bf before he left for work.... Now I am just absolutely livid. I am really worried about my mum.”

Gunman Adam Lanza, 20, killed 20 children aged six and seven and six adults at the elementary school in Newtown last Friday, before turning the gun on himself.

He also shot and killed his mother before turning up at the school. Police are still looking for a motive.