ONE of this year’s hopefuls for The Apprentice already has an East Lancashire link to a former contestant on the BBC show.

Former Shameless actress Sarah Byrne, ex-partner of fellow cast member Jody Latham, is among the candidates vying for Sir Alan Sugar’s affections in the programme’s 2018 incarnation.

Burnley-born Latham was cleared by a court of harassing Adam Hosker in November 2016 after the former Blackburn car salesman shared a drink with Sarah at his Manchester apartment.

Mr Hosker insisted he was not in a relationship with Sarah at the time, and Manchester magistrates found Latham not guilty of making threatening phone calls or tweets to the Blackburn man.

Lancashire Telegraph:

Jody Latham

Back in 2007 Mr Hosker was one of the same Apprentice intake as notorious columnist Katie Hopkins.

Sarah, now 29, and Latham have a daughter together but she secured a restraining order against him, in 2016, after he admitted to harassing her.

She has successfully founded her own eponymous acting academy, and is making a determined pitch to outdo her fellow entrepreneurs.

In her audition tape, she said: “If I have a problem with you I’m gonna tell you.”

Sarah played Meena Karib in Channel 4’s Shameless between 2008 and 2009. Latham made his name as Lip Gallagher before securing a role in EastEnders.

Making her pitch to Lord Sugar, she added: “I am me, I don’t have a posh accent or pretend to be anyone else.

“My personality sells me, my passion to succeed and work ethic.”

Her stint on the show will see her surrounded by a host of Lancashire contenders.

Lancashire Telegraph:

Camilla Ainsworth

Former Westholme School student Camilla Ainsworth, the founder of health drink outfit MylkPlus, based in Blackburn, has pledged to play it cagey during the selection process.

Rich Monk, 33, from Chorley, a quality controller, has also joined the line-up.

He said: “I won’t pussyfoot and waste time, as time is of the essence in everything.

“People will have to like it or lump it.”

The trio have a £250,000 prize in their sights and are up against 13 other bright young things. Among their other rivals is a solicitor, a tree surgeon and a swimwear boss.

Lancashire Telegraph:

Rick Monk