|Portrayed by||William Rush|
|First Appearance (Regular)||Series 5 Episode 1|
|Last Appearance (Regular)||Series 8 Episode 7 (A Woman Scorned)|
|First Appearance (Guest)||Series 8 Episode 24 (Tan-Tastic)|
|Last Appearance (Guest)||Series 8 Episode 24 (Tan-Tastic)|
|Cause/Reason||Got a job in Manchester working for Lorraine Donnegan|
|Born||28th April 1994|
|Occupation||Trainee Manager, Call Centre|
|Father||Tom Clarkson (Deceased)|
|Grandmothers||Unnamed Gran (Paternal)|
|Romances||Lauren Andrews |
|Cousins||Katie Clarkson |
Joshua "Josh" Stevenson is the son of English teacher Tom Clarkson. Josh is a good looking and grade average lad, with Tom's looks. He grew up with his mother, Georgia Stevenson and their status as a single-parent family has made Josh fiercely defensive of her.
Josh rejects more macho pursuits like sport and football in favour of music and he is a capable, if not a utterly dedicated, student. He now has a good relationship with Tom, but can find it hard to give his dad the benefit of the doubt – understandable considering he spent the first fifteen years of his life believing Tom (who never knew of Josh’s existence) had abandoned him at birth.
Josh goes through a lot during his time at Waterloo Road, from realising that he is gay to a cannabis addiction which later leads to him being diagnosed with schizophrenia. Determined to let nothing get in his way, Josh enters the world of work and wants to make his dad proud.
Josh joins Waterloo Road after the merger with John Fosters. He appears from Series 5 Episode 1 onward. He is best friends with Luke Pendle who also joined the school after the merger. Josh firsts meets Tom at the school assembly where they introduce themselves. Josh asks if he's Tom Clarkson to which Tom responds that it's Mr Clarkson to him.
Later, Tom Clarkson finds that his past is being unearthed because of Josh. Josh had been sending Tom pictures of him and Georgia Stevenson from 14 years ago when Tom was one of her university pupils.
In Episode 3, Tom decides to visit Georgia to ask why Josh is sending him pictures of them and she tells him that she became pregnant with Josh as a result of their one-night stand. Tom drives off leaving Georgia unknown of his next moves with Josh.
In Episode 4, Tom tells Josh that he knows he is his son and also that he didn't even know about him or knew that he had a son. Josh doesn't believe him at first, sure that Tom just abandoned him but later Tom and Josh meet up and they have a deep conversation. Josh tells Tom that he's his imaginary hero. Tom gets him tickets to a football match and Josh tells him he doesn't like football but later decides to go anyway to spend time with Tom.
In Episode 5, Tom and Georgia are talking during Josh's football match. Tom tells her that they need to be a family for him. Josh's relatedness to Tom is made known to the staff room.
In Episode 6, Josh's attempts to push his mum and Dad together results in an admission by his mum. During dinner, Tom makes a joke and Georgia mentions a turkey baster. Tom, unclear of what this means, demands she tell him what she's talking about. She admits she stole Tom’s sperm to get pregnant. Tom angrily leaves and threatens to tell their son.
Josh finds out in Episode 7 how he was conceived, leaving him shaken and confused, saying some hurtful things to both Tom and Georgia. It takes Josh a while to really understand what his Mum did, leaving an awkward relationship with him, Georgia and Tom.
In Episode 8, Tom tries to get closer to Josh, but Josh still refuses to let him in. After the worst possible outcome, he still persists in his attempts to get closer by taking Josh to an old allotment for some father-son bonding time. They both speak together and grow closer. At the end of the episode, Josh approaches Tom and Tom’s girlfriend at the time, Rose Kelly. He later urges Tom to race with him and play football. Tom and Josh play football with Luke and when they leave Tom rustles Josh's hair. Josh is not seen in Episode 9 (which is the only episode he's not seen in).
Josh is not seen much in Episode 10 but we see him practising and performing in the talent show alongside his best friend Luke Pendle. They sing 'Wonderwall' by Oasis. Josh calls Tom 'Dad' for the first time, and is later happily embarrassed by him. In the next scene, Josh decides he wants to take a big step with Tom by moving in with him. It seems that Josh doesn't want to live with Georgia anymore after being lied to for 14 years. We don't see any more of her. Even though Josh left her to go live with his father, he is still fiercely defensive of her, perhaps rendering him a little over-sensitive to ridicule. Josh is always trying to be the son Tom wants.
Later in the spring term of Series 5, Josh starts treating Tom more like a mate instead of his Dad and doesn't give him the respect he should. In Episode 11, new boy Finn Sharkey makes his presence known, quickly making friends with Josh and Amy Porter through his lack of respect for boundaries. Josh sticks up for Tom when Finn starts trouble in class. Tom starts to become concerned about who Josh is influenced by and hangs around with.
In Episode 12, Finn decides to bring alcohol on a school trip to a farm, which ends in disaster and puts Josh in hospital after he gets acid in his eyes. Tom has strong words with him and tells him to stay well away from Finn. Josh sits in silence as he is shocked to see this side of his Dad. Finn later goes round to Josh's house to see if he is alright, but Tom makes it very clear that he doesn't want him anywhere near his son by kicking him out of the house and warning him to stay away from Josh.
Episode 14 shows Josh in a whole new light. It's Josh's 15th birthday and Tom is planning a party. Josh and Lauren Andrews' flirting picks up pace, only to come to an abrupt end when the secret of Lauren's large birthmark on her back is revealed to the whole school. When Josh sees this, he becomes disgusted of her and joins in with bullying her along with Finn, Paul Langley, Bolton Smilie and other boys. Not knowingwhat Finn is doing, Tom accidentally lets him bully Lauren in class. Totally humiliated and desperate, Lauren steals hydrogen peroxide from the science lab to try to bleach the birthmark away but instead ends up getting an acid burn. Lauren tells Tom how Josh treated her, causing Tom's first disappointment in his son. Tom grounds Josh and cancels his party. He also tells him that he doesn't think it's working and is thinking about sending Josh back to his mum, leaving Josh worried and confused.
In Episode 16, Kim Campbell notices how Josh is treating Tom and has a word with him. Tom defends his son which he later regrets. Finn's disruptive behaviour persuades Josh and Amy to join him in smoking a legal high. For Amy, it's a far-from-pleasant experience and Josh has further side-effects when he starts hallucinating in class. Tom, worried about his son's behaviour, questions Josh who "fesses" up – believing that his dad would be cool about it as they are more like friends than father and son. However, Josh is stunned and humiliated by Tom's angry reaction and in retaliation, he spikes Tom's lunch with the drug. Tom drives Kim to the hospital while drugged causing him to crash, putting both him and Kim in hospital. Kim sits with Josh at the hospital and has a word. Josh tells her he's sorry and hugs her. He goes to see his Dad and holds his hand and cries. He tells Tom that he loves him and begs him not to send him back to his Mum's house so he gives Josh another chance but also cracks a joke and grounds Josh for a 'year' but Josh must respect him and start treating him like his father, which he does.
Tom and Josh are not seen again until Episode 20. They are seen dancing together at the school prom. This is the last we see of them until Series 6.
In Series 6, Josh is now in year 11. Lauren wants more from Josh, she wants to be his girlfriend and have a sexual relationship, but Josh feels very different.
In Episode 4, Josh starts to question his sexuality. Josh directs his frustration towards new student Connor Lewis with a homophobic insult, this results into a fight, Tom puts Josh on the bench and Josh later nudges Tom. But a much deeper issue is revealed when he tries to kiss Finn, who is disgusted with his friend's behaviour and quickly spreads word of it throughout the school. Following a fight, the two friends are forced to explain their actions to Tom and Charlie Fisher. However, Josh denies the kiss ever happened, much to Tom's relief, after the word spread throughout the school Josh finds it hard to keep his lie under control and later tries to prove everyone wrong by getting physical with Lauren. They are caught kissing in a store room by Charlie, not before Josh tries to tell Lauren what he really feels. Lauren, hurt and angry, storms off. Josh is sent to the cooler but runs off; scared to face Tom again. He is ready to pack-up and head back to his Mum's when he admits what he has done to Tom, he also tells him that he's not getting any second chances if he mucks-up in the future.
In Episode 5, Josh is picked on by Finn. Tom decides to act for the benefit of his son and asks him to join a self-defence class. He later admits to Josh that he wants him to stick-up for himself. Josh gets angry and goes off on his own. He later confronts Finn, and tells him that it's up to him if he wants to carry their friendship on. The two reconcile and continue their friendship. Tom catches Finn helping Josh with his defensive skills. This is where Tom finally gets that his son is gay, but Tom understands, he just wants Josh to be happy. Later on, Josh, yet again under the influence of 'best friend' Finn, Josh and Finn are seen teasing Harry Fisher leading to their exclusion for a week and Josh having a severe telling of by his dad.
In Episode 13, Josh has a boyfriend, Nate. Nate's uncomfortable relationship with his Dad hits rock bottom. Josh and Nate spot a tag on the wall saying ‘Nate loves Josh’. This is when Matthew Gurney discovers that his son is gay. Unable to accept the news, Matthew blames the school for encouraging Nate's sexuality and orders him to keep away from Josh. Tom intervenes with some words of advice, prompting reconciliation with violent consequences. Tom is beaten up by Matthew at the pub while on a date with Francesca Montoya. Josh is angry by what has happened to his father and takes it out on Nate, he later comforts Nate as he is scared he will turn out like his father. A few weeks after Tom's vicious attack, he decides to return to school. Tom, now suffering from PTSD after his ordeal, pushes Kyle to the ground after a fight nearly breaks out. Josh is worried but helps and supports his Dad, Tom leaves for a while and returns when he's ready for his son's help.
In Episode 17, Finn and Ronan have an illegal drinking party, Josh and Nate are seen dancing together, Kyle forces Denzil to phone Tom to tell him about the party. After stopping the party and saving Finn from nearly being beaten up by thugs, Tom gets Josh, Sambuca, Nate and Finn into trouble, he tells Josh he expected more from him, and most likely grounds him again.
In Episode 20, Finn, Sam, Josh and Nate are seen in the pantomime "Cindafella", It ends in disaster after Denzil and Kyle plan to ruin it.
After series 6, Josh does not go out with Nate and we don’t see or hear of Nate again.
Josh is now in Year 13 (in the second half of the series, year 12 in the first), and is at his lowest points. Josh finds it hard to see Tom so hurt after the death of friend and classmate Sambuca, Josh asks Tom if he's alright at the memorial, Tom wraps his arm around Josh and says 'I am if you are'. They both deal with it together, as a family.
In Episode 10, Finn brags about passing his driving test as he dares Josh to steal his dad's car keys to take the car for a spin, under his influence, Josh does so. Finn, Josh, Lauren and Amy bunk off and take the car for a spin, almost running over Chalky. They are all sent to the cooler. Tom is mad and gives them a lecture, Finn; still hurt from Sam's death shouts 'No one died Tom!'. Angrily, Josh shouts at him and backs Tom.
In Episode 22, Josh is shown smoking weed and Tom finds out and is furious. Josh throws the remaining weed it in the toilet and apologises to Tom, but Tom can't seem to trust Josh after that, keeping a close eye on him from then.
In Episode 23, Josh's friends considered their pot smoking a one off, however, Josh is unable to stop. When his father finds out, Josh promises to kick the habit. However, Josh gets a phone call from his dealer Grady, who later shows up at school and shamelessly flirts with Josh and gets him into thinking they have a date. However, Grady only does this to manipulate Josh into buying more drugs. Josh turns up to class stoned and ends up being sick over his teacher, and it doesn't take Tom long to find out what his son has been doing yet again. Nikki spots Josh leaning against a wall stoned, Nikki tells him she's used to dealing with stoners in the barracks, she soaks him in the showers to try and sober him up and makes him go on a run. While out in town on the run Josh spots Grady kissing a girl, he realises he’s been duped and they get into a fight and Grady throws Josh to the ground before leaving. Tom is furious to find out what Josh has been up to and makes it clear that he’s not going to intervene should the school decide to punish Josh by suspending him, Josh tells Michael he feels too much pressure, from school and from Tom. Josh is later excluded for a week.
In Episode 24, Josh's behaviour becomes increasingly erratic. Josh is elected to be a fire marshal by Michael. Later on when the fire alarm goes off, he freaks out and smashes the glass and cuts his hand. Finn tries to calm him down, but it doesn't work and Josh runs away. He tells Tom, who runs off to find him. Tom and Nikki follow a trail of blood leading to Josh who's crying in a corner. Upon finding him Josh asks Tom why it's all going wrong, Tom can't answer. Nikki urges Tom to seek professional help. Josh is referred to a psychiatrist by the GP, who explains to Tom that it could be schizophrenia.
In Episode 25, Tom, scared by the news is unable to tell Josh about his visit to the psychiatrist, until Nikki urges Tom to for the sake of Josh. Tom makes a hard decision and tells Josh, Josh tells Tom that he's scared, Tom comforts him.
In Episode 26, Josh doesn't want to go to school after the news, he lies to Tom and tells him he feels ill, Lauren later comes round to see why he's not in, Josh tells her, she comforts him, Nikki and Tom later spot Josh laughing with Lauren.
In Episode 27, it's the start of exam season at Waterloo Road and Josh is struggling to cope with the workload. Without his medication, his mental health begins to spiral out of control yet again. Josh becomes obsessed with an old plague pit underneath the school and when some of the girls play a trick on him, he starts to believe that spirits are trying to contact him.
Soon, his behaviour gets worse, Josh starts to itch his arm until it bleeds during his exam. He then lies on the floor with his exam paper in his hands. Tom, confused and worried, runs over to Josh. Josh shouts at Tom for touching him and runs out of the hall. Josh is very upset and freaks out, telling Tom he has the plague. Nikki calls an ambulance and Lauren tells Tom that Josh has stopped taking his medication. Josh doesn't want to go in the ambulance but Tom grabs him and hugs him tightly, he tells him it will all be alright. Tom seems to blame himself for what happened to Josh. Nikki comforts him by telling him he's a great dad and Josh knows it, this helps Tom deal with it a little.
In Episode 30, Josh is taking his pills again, and gets annoyed at Tom over his suit, Tom worries, but Josh apologises as he's feeling nervous. Josh returns to school for the final day and can't believe how his best friend Finn was dragged into the gangs so easily and is sad to hear that Waterloo road is closing down. Josh is disappointed when Michael announces that the prom has been cancelled.
Josh is caught by Eugene's gang after eavesdropping on their conversation with Tariq Siddiqi and is forced in to their car. He calls Ronan and is able to tell him where he is being taken before his phone is thrown out of the window. They bring him to the top of a car park and threaten to throw him over the edge. Ronan and Tom arrive, Tom goes ballistic and tells them to get off his son, Tom urges Eugene to fight him but Eugene backs down.
Ronan and Josh find out that prom isn't cancelled and that Finn is in danger. Tom, Josh and Ronan race to the school, as Josh runs in to the hall he sees Kyle trying to aim for Finn with the crossbow. Heroically, Josh pushes Finn out the way as Kyle fires the bolt which ends up grazing Josh's arm, Tom runs to Josh who is lying on the floor covered in blood, he screams for someone to call an ambulance. Josh is taken away by the ambulance but not before Finn thanks him.
At the end of the episode we see Tom, Josh, Grantly, Maggie, Michael, Sian, Denzil, Scout, Phoenix, Chalky and Tariq ready to leave for the new Waterloo Road which is being built in Scotland. Approaching the border Denzil asks if they can stop and they pull over at a lay by where just as Grantly proposes to Maggie; a large van swerves off the road out of control, hurtling towards the group of teachers and students...
Josh returns to Waterloo Road with his dad in Series eight to resit his exams. He soon begins to question his future at Waterloo Road. Josh faces up to his future - he needs to live his own life away from Waterloo road but worries about how Tom will take it
In Episode 2, after Tariq’s accident, Josh and Tariq start to become good friends. He helps him when Lula Tsibi says some hurtful things about his disability. Josh tries to convince Tariq that life is worth living but Tariq isn't interested.
In Episode 3, Josh works out that Tariq is trying to commit suicide when Tariq starts giving away all his belongings, including giving Josh his ring. Josh tells Tom and Michael, who are able to save Tariq from drowning himself.
Josh returns for a guest episode, in Series 8 Episode 24. Josh comes back to see his Dad and give a speech to the sixth formers about life after school. Josh was promoted to the head of division at the call Centre. Josh arrives in a designer suit and is wearing an expensive watch, and later tells Tom that he and friend are hiring a boat to go sailing in Cornwall at the weekend. Tom questions how Josh can afford all this, since it doesn’t match his salary, which he learned after speaking to Lorraine about Josh's employment. After going through Josh’s phone and wallet, Tom finds out that his son is in thousands of pounds worth of debt on multiple credit cards. Angry and embarrassed about the debt, Josh reacts in rage and hurts Tom's feeling. At lunchtime, Josh finds out from Maggie that his Dad will be a kidney donor for Grantly. Unable to cope with the news, he confronts Tom. Tom tells him to get over himself. They both later apologise. Josh tells Tom it's a great thing he’s doing, they smile at each other and both leave.
This is William Rush's last episode of Waterloo Road. Josh is not mentioned after his dad died and does not appear at the memorial held by the school.
- "I’m Josh Stevenson." - First line
- "He’s lying, Dad! I don't know what he’s on about!" - Josh to Tom denying that he kissed Finn.
- "I’m sorry, Dad!" - Josh after his dad Tom caught him with weed.
- "SHE DOESN'T JUDGE ME! She made me see I don’t have to use drugs to solve my problems!" - Josh to Tom after he is caught with drugs again.
- "I told him he didn’t need to treat me any different from what he did before, I'm still me." - Josh talking to his dad about Finn.
- "Accidents happen, Dad!" - Josh pleading with Tom after been caught drinking.
- “Finn, you either be my mate or you don’t, it’s your choice, I don't need so called mates who can't accept me for who I am; and for the record, I don't fancy you." - Josh talking to Finn after kissing him
- “I've told you everything; stuff I'd never tell anyone else." - Josh talking to Nate.
- "I love you Dad, please don't send me away." - Josh crying over Tom after spiking his dinner.
- "No, no, Dad, please, just make it stop, make him go away!" - Josh after running out of the exam hall due to his schizophrenia.
- "D'you hear it? D'you hear it too? It's Ring-a-ring-o-roses." - Josh being taken to the ambulance, in Series 7 Episode 27
- “You really do think you’re perfect, don’t you? But you’re not. You’re just a stuck-in-the-mud teacher who feels he has to chase charity to make himself feel better.” - Josh to Tom, after Tom found out Josh was thousand of pounds in debt.
- "Between us we cook a mean spag-bol, eh, Dad?" - Josh's final line of the show
- When Josh met Tom, he was 14 years old. It was his 15th birthday on Series 5 Episode 14. In his last appearance he was 18. Josh aged 3 years on Waterloo Road.
- Josh has the same eyes as his dad, pointed out by his mum to Tom.
- Josh can sing and play guitar.
- Josh was best friends with Luke Pendle, now Finn Sharkey.
- Josh is openly gay.
- Josh has cut off contact with his Mother, for lying to him about his Dad.
- Josh had a romance with Nate Gurney, who was forced to leave Waterloo Road by his father.
- Josh was diagnosed with schizophrenia after becoming addicted to cannabis, he was born with it.
- Josh and Tariq became friends after the crash in Series 7 Episode 30.
- After Tom dies, Josh is never seen or mentioned again.