BBC Waterloo Road Wiki
Advertisement
Christine Mulgrew
Christine Mulgrew.jpg
Portrayed by Laurie Brett
First Appearance Series 8 Episode 1 (New Beginnings)
Last Appearance Series 10 Episode 20 (A Fairytale Ending)
Cause/Reason End of the programme
Born 5th May 1968
Occupation English Teacher
Head of English (S8E1-S8E28, S10E1-S10E20)
Head of Year 12 (S8)
Headteacher (S8E29-S9E19)
Acting Deputy Headteacher (S10E10)
Chairwoman of the PTA (S10E11-S10E20)
Relationships
Spouse(s) Joe Mulgrew (later divorced)
Romances Michael Byrne
Marco D'Olivera
Sons Connor Mulgrew
Headteacher
Series 8 Episode 29 - Series 9 Episode 17
Deputy Simon Lowsley
George Windsor (S9E3-S9E17)
Preceded by Michael Byrne
Succeeded by George Windsor (acting)
Series 9 Episode 18 - Series 9 Episode 19
Deputy Simon Lowsley
George Windsor
Preceded by George Windsor (acting)
Succeeded by Simon Lowsley (acting)
Deputy Headteacher (acting)
Series 10 Episode 10 - Series 10 Episode 10
Headteacher Vaughan Fitzgerald
Preceded by Simon Lowsley
Succeeded by Lorna Hutchinson


Christine Mulgrew joined Waterloo Road as the school's new Head of English. She arrives with her son Connor whom she suffers a difficult relationship with. Christine is a very complex character who intrigues other staff and pupils. Christine is also very damaging and is an impressive liar however her lies and deception finally catch up with her at the expense of Imogen and Connor. She later becomes Headteacher, and being in the role for 21 episodes. However as of the end of the programme, Vaughan Fitzgerald became the shortest serving head, appearing in only 20 episodes. Due to her relapse, Christine resigned as Head Teacher due to stress and the effects to her health and well-being. Due to her crashing her car earlier that morning, Christine was arrested that afternoon.

In Series 10, Christine continued in her previous role as a teacher of English. She later becomes Chairwoman of the PTA (Parent Teacher Association).

Christine becomes good friends with; Audrey McFall, Maggie Budgen and Olga Fitzgerald during her time at the school.

Christine with Simon Lowsley and George Windsor

Characteristics and Personality

Before Waterloo Road, Christine was in a sexual relationship with Joe Mulgrew and they lived on a small country farm with his father. Whilst residing at the farm Joe's father raped Christine after she made a blunt comment about the muddy state he was in. The resulting incident resulted into the birth of Connor and Joe left before he was born. We can assume this was one of the causes of her alcoholism. Christine then went on to teach in Glasgow and it is evident that she was under the influence of alcohol at this time. She then left her school in Glasgow to become Head of English at Waterloo Road.

Christine.jpg

Christine really liked drinking, Christine first on screen hit her son Connor and then was seen hitting George Windsor in a deleted scene of Waterloo Road in Series 8 Episode 27

In one of the final episodes in Series 8, Michael Byrne and Lorraine Donnegan left Waterloo Road and the school turned into a council school. Christine Mulgrew was given the job as the Acting Head until a permanent Head Teacher was placed in charge of the school. The Series 8 finale showed Christine's skills as Tom Clarkson, the Deputy Head dies. She worked well to get the school back on its feet after the incident. In the beginning of Series 9, there was a fight between Simon Lowsley and Christine Mulgrew to see who was going to get the top job at the school. Mr Lowsley had a huge advantage when Mr Lowsley revealed that his future father in law was the Director of Education in Scotland. But when the day came, Simon pulled out of the job, and Christine got the job. At Simon's wedding, Christine was surrounded by alcohol and everyone drunk, but she was strong enough to leave the wedding before turning drunk.  In series 9 episode 19, Christine is at home under the influence of alcohol after drinking all weekend. This was probably the first time she drank since the second term of series 8. She is late for a meeting with social services and a meeting with the education board goes terrible for her. She resigns as the Head and she is investigated by Police Scotland after she drove her car to school but since she was drunk, she crashed into another vehicle and left the scene of the accident to get to school. She then starts drinking in school, and she splashes vodka into a police officer's face, she is immediately arrested and is in a police station cell. After she recovers, she apologises to everyone at the school, sorts out the climbing wall incident on the last day, she then goes back to being an English teacher and helps the students if they need any help.

Connor Mulgrew

P01fvzvt.jpg

Christine has a turbulent relationship with Connor due to her alcoholism. In series 8, episode 1 after arriving at the school boarding house drunk with Grantly, Connor immediately tries to escort her home but she tells him to shut his face. In episode 2 of series 8 Connor plants a Vodka bottle on her desk in order to "out" her alcohol addiction. When Christine finds out it was Connor she then drunkenly interrogates him saying he is twisted and how he wants to hurt her. Connor then retaliates by setting fire to the kitchen but he pulls Christine out in time. Upon discovering she has alcoholic hepatitis, she has to teach her whole class with alcohol withdrawal symptoms which did not go unnoticed by her students. She constantly remarks that the windows need to be open, throws a book through the classroom. She finally pushes Phoenix Taylor to the ground. Later on in the day Connor finds her in her classroom sobbing and frantically breathing he goes to her but she hits him which causes a deep cut on his face. In Episode 10 of Series 8 Christine discovers that Connor and Imogen’s plans to run away together in the boarding house and abruptly thwarts them. After a violent showdown with Connor and Imogen she then quickly races back to Waterloo Road but is confronted by Audrey after Connor tells the entire teaching faculty about her alcohol addiction. Christine takes the blame for the fire that Connor started to protect him and at the end of the episode she is seen in an alcohol anonymous meeting in which she breaks down by saying that she needs help.

Audrey McFall

Christine develops a feud with Audrey McFall after Connor marks Christine's English coursework which prompts Audrey to investigate. After Audrey harmlessly questions Christine's high marks, Christine files a complaint against Audrey which sparks a feud between the two. When Christine's alcoholism is discovered, Audrey is quick to help Christine recover. When Christine has an alcoholic rebound later on in the series she offers many words of advice but Christine responds by saying that Audrey is not human and should accept failure for once which causes Audrey to cry. However the two make up and Audrey takes Christine salsa dancing but Christine feels uncomfortable and leaves. From series 9 episode 1-5, Christine gets into a feud with Audrey after she gets new students Lenny and Lisa Brown's brother Larry arrested for going round to his house and then calling the police, and for getting too involved with the twins, In episode 5, She then gets the twin’s Grandfather involved and after Lisa steals his medals, She lets Audrey fix things and they get back to normal.

From Episode 11 in Series 8 the two find out that they have a lot in common and the two start to talk about life. Soon their relationship grows in Episode 12 when they go on a walk as Michael finds Christine very supportive and nice to talk to because he thinks that she is very positive. In Episode 12 Christine accidentally drops her lesson plans in the river and Michael dives in to save them and he does.

Then in Episode 13 Michael walks Christine home and the both kiss. But their relationship is plunged and broken soon afterwards, as in Episode 14 Christine's ex husband returns causing Christine to have a temporary setback which leaves Michael annoyed and announces that their relationship was a mistake. But in Episode 15 she recovers and she and Michael rekindle what they started.

A few weeks later, their relationship hit its first snag when Christine thought she was pregnant. This sent Michael into a panic and he was initially very frosty with her, heartbroken, Christine decide that they weren't working and they broke up.

Mrs Mulgrew Classroom door.jpg

In Episode 19, Imogen sees them flirting and can tell that they want to be a couple. Imogen and Connor them set them up and send them to a restaurant for a romantic meal. In the end they do go.

The next week its exam day and Michael is at Christine's house, when they are kissing Michael's phone rings and Lorraine was ringing to see where he was and when Christine answers she finds out about their relationship. Michael is angry as he wanted to keep their relationship quiet. Later at school in the staff room, Lorraine announces the relationship to everyone, they are all shocked but Michael instantly says they are just friends which makes Christine upset so she walks off. He then catches up with her and tells her he did not know what to say and she tells him that he needs to make his mind up because she does not want to keep it quiet forever. She then books a holiday for her and Connor to Paris straight after his exam, unaware that he is planning to marry Imogen at the same time they are due to go on the holiday. Christine tells Michael and he is shocked so he tells her he will miss her but she doesn't believe him. Michael then talks to Scout and she tells him that life is too short, he races to Christine before she leaves for Paris. Christine then gets a text from Connor saying he is not coming on the holiday, she's mad but Michael turns up and kisses her in view of all the students and staff and tells her that he was an idiot but he loves and wants to be with her and does not care who knows, she tells him she has spent £600 on a holiday nobody wants but he says he's not sure that's true and tells her to stop off at his to get his passport. They get into the taxi and drive away. Michael recommends that Christine as head teacher until the council gets somebody else. 

Christine at the Head Teacher interview

Simon Lowsley

From Series 9 Episode 1, Christine and new deputy Simon Lowsley have not exactly seen eye to eye, , Simon offered to do  the assembly about Tom Clarkson's death but she turns down Simon's offer. The week after Christine finds out that Simon and Sue are planning to get married, Christine also found out that Sue is Robert Bain's (Head of East Greenock's education) daughter, Then Simon and Sue plan to get rid of Christine so that Simon can become the head teacher. They then started doing a list about all the things that Christine had done wrong to present to Bain, in a try to get her fired, but this later proved unsuccessful as Simon later withdrew his application.

Nearer to the end of the first Term, Christine and Simon decide to do a school council meeting to see what the pupils what at their school, Simon came up with the Apprentice. They also did a History Week run by Audrey where Robert Bain came to see how the school was getting along. When Robert came, all the scheming about the list came out after what happened the week before where Sue slipped on the floor, Simon wanted to make a formal complaint about Christine to Robert. Christine and Simon was blaming each other about things and responsibilities that went wrong. In episode 9, Simon rescues Lenny Brown after he was kidnapped by a estranged teacher and gained Christine's trust.

Christine and Simon going head to head

On the last episode before the end of term was the Head Teacher interview to see who would make a better Head, Simon withdrew his application to become Head after Christine said that “you have been given a gift by teaching so don't ruin it“ and also when she said she was able to tell a pupil about her trouble with her alcoholism with her son Connor to get across to Stevie Mack and his mother to be open.

Robert Bain

Robert Bain is the Director of Education for Greenock Council.

At the end of series 8, Robert was very keen to give the job to Christine as Acting Head Teacher, Not Knowing that Robert‘s Son in law was going to become the new deputy. Robert seemed to like Christine very much. In episode 8 Series 9, He was very happy to see her but as Sue and Simon gave him a list of all mistakes including George Windsor couldn‘t teach mandarin, He didn't seem so sure. On episode 10 at the Head Teacher Interviews, he didn't seem so nice but that was expected as Sue wasn't sure if Simon wanted to get married and how sad his family were at the moment but everything was sorted out in that episode and then when he reappears in Episode 19, he seems to be against Christine and up for Simon becoming Acting Head. He is showing slightly favouritism for his son in Law. Robert doesn't return treating Christine badly after she quits her job.

Role in Series 10

Christine returned in Series 10 as a teacher of English. Initially distrusted by her successor Vaughan Fitzgerald, she later gains his confidence following her handling of the death of Darren Hughes's mother. Although they didn't always see eye to eye, as shown with the approach to mock exams in Episode 5, Christine is later appointed to the additional role of PTA Chair, alongside Lorna Hutchinson. She serves as Acting Deputy Head in Episode 10 (due to Simon's departure the previous episode), and also takes the role as Acting Headteacher, during Vaughan's absence in the final episode.

Trivia

Christine is the fourth and final female headteacher in the show, alongside Rachel Mason, Karen Fisher and Nikki Boston.

Advertisement