LOCAL acting talent Elliot Baxter gets a big career break this week when he makes his television debut in one of the BBC’s top dramas.

The former Queen Katherine School student plays Young Niall Wallace in tonight’s (Thursday, 9pm) Silent Witness.

The 16-year-old Kendalian plays the young version of the main character in several flashback sequences and originally auditioned for the part via video.

“I found out that I’d got the part when I was on the National Youth Theatre course last summer,” explained Elliot. “I was shocked but really excited.”

In a Lonely Place is a two-part storyline that concludes tomorrow night (Friday) and was filmed at Dundee in Scotland: “I had my own trailer with my name on the door,” added Elliot. “It was pretty cool.”

Elliot said he was a bit nervous about seeing himself for the first time on television. “It was my first TV job and I want it to go well.

“It’s a bit surreal to think I’m going to be on TV.”

Elliot said he was grateful to those who had helped him pursue a career in acting, especially, Burneside Amateur Theatrical Society: “I used to watch them as a child.

“When I was older I joined them. That’s what got me into acting. I’m very grateful to BATS for everything they did.

“Also Helen Noble of Tread (his agent). I couldn’t have got the part in Silent Witness without Helen.”

One of the region’s most gifted young actors, Elliot is studying drama at Kendal College and last summer landed one of 400 places with National Youth Theatre for a summer workshop in London, which enabled him to become a fully-fledged member of the prestigious youth theatre.

For the second year running in 2013 he was also successful in gaining a place on a Youth Music Theatre UK project, chosen to perform in the BBC’s musical film Vanishing Point.

Elliot said his older sister Emily was also a big influence; he will share the stage with his 18-year-old sibling in Kendal College’s Accrington Pals, which is staged at The Box, in March.

Elliot plays Tom, one of the lead roles.

Silent Witness stars Emilia Fox as Doctor Nikki Alexander and David Caves as Jack Hodgson.

The show regularly draws audiences of more than seven million in the UK and reaches viewers across the globe including Denmark, Sweden, Australia, the Far East and Latin America. The series - about a team of forensic pathologists and their investigations into various crimes - was created by Nigel McCrery a former murder squad detective in Nottingham and has been running since 1996.