The Bay season 2: Meet the cast and characters in the return of murder mystery

Morven Christie and Daniel Ryan welcome some familiar characters - and new faces you will definitely recognise - to Morecambe for the The Bay season 2.

By Alex Fletcher Updated: 3 February 2021 - 5.10pm

The Bay returns to ITV with a brand new murder mystery and yet more dark secrets in the seaside town of Morecambe.

Not caught up with The Bay season 1 yet? It’s not essential for understanding what happens in the new episodes, but you will be missing out on the backstory of Morven Christie’s character DC Lisa Armstrong.

The Bay season 1 and 2 box sets are now available to watch in full on BritBox.

Season 2 shifts the story focus to the middle class family the Marshbrooks, played by Stephen Tomkinson and Sharon Small, who suddenly find their comfortable lives shattered by a shocking event.

The new series begins with a jaw-dropping twist – you won’t want to turn up five minutes late – and ups the ante on the drama, tension and moral dilemmas of season 1.

The Bay returns with a bang - Episode 1 review

Meet the The Bay season 2 cast

DC Lisa Armstrong - Played by Morven Christie

Morven Christie as Lisa Armstrong in The Bay ITV

Where have you seen her before?

Grantchester, Ordeal by Innocence, The A Word, The Replacement

Who is Lisa?

Following the fallout from her mistake last year, Lisa has had to face the consequences of her actions and rebuild the trust of her colleagues and family. It’s taken its toll – demoted and living in a small flat with her kids, she’s spent this year trying to be the best officer, mum and daughter and supressing her adventurous spirit.

Faced with one of the toughest cases of her career, Lisa must utilise all of her skills as a Family Liaison Officer to support a grieving family and search for the truth, whilst working under the colleague she trained.

As work proves challenging, things aren’t any easier at home as a mysterious figure returns from the past, looking to destabilise the dynamics of her family. With her life being tested from all sides, Lisa must find strength in herself and dig deep to realise what’s truly important.

Morven Christie on Lisa Armstrong

“Lisa is just a single mum who's pushed her way through and at the point that we find her in series two, she's made some really heavy mistakes and she's paying for it. She's in quite a vulnerable place," said the Scottish actress.

“She’s got no money and her professional life is in a really precarious state because she's on probation. There's doubt around whether she'll ever be able to claw her way back up to her previous role.

"She's tried to rebuild her relationship with her children, which feels like it is on the mend, but with the job that 19 she has and the time that that takes up, that's always a little bit delicate too. She no longer has any of the things she used to rely on.

“They've all been broken down, so she's just a bit at sea and is trying hard to get solid ground under her feet again.”

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DI Tony Manning – Daniel Ryan

Daniel Ryan playing DI Tony Manning ITV

Where have you seen him before?

Mount Pleasant, Innocent, Skins, Linda Green

Who is Tony?

DI Manning, late-40s, is a dedicated, down-to-earth leader. He prides himself in looking out for his officers and leading his team from the front to achieve the best results. In this most challenging of domestic cases, Manning needs to guide his team and lead them through this complex investigation, whilst dealing with the breakdown of his home life.

Used to having his decisions complied with, Manning struggles to accept defeat in his broken marriage and is forced to face the consequences of his actions when his personal life starts to impact on his professional.

Daniel Ryan on season 2

“What is great on a personal level is that we get to know my character’s background a little bit more. In the first series we only saw him at work doing his job and his relationship with Lisa. In series two it opens up a bit and we get to see what's going on in his home life, which is great for me to play.

“I knew Daragh had written a really brilliant breakdown of the character and what was happening to him so to see it on screen has been great.”

DS Med Kharim - Taheen Modak

Taheen Modak playing DS Med Kharim ITV

Where have you seen him before?

Two Weeks To Live, Van Der Valk

Who is Med Kharim?

Ambitious and hardworking, 29-year-old Med has had to step up as lead family liaison officer following Lisa’s demotion. Full of genuine concern for the families he works with, Med strives to perform as best he can but, without Lisa’s experience, he’s still prone to making mistakes.

With a wife and young toddler at home, Med is juggling more than most people in their twenties, and he is keen to find the balance between excelling as a DS and ensuring he’s the best father and husband for his family. In this complex case, Med goes beyond what’s required of him to uncover the truth to seek justice.

Taheen Modak on season 2

If you thought the first series was good, Daragh has really stepped it up this series. It is just such a good drama. There’s so much action; it really pushes the boundaries and goes to some dark places. Daragh has done this from the very first scenes and that is so exciting for an audience. He has just upped the stakes completely.

Stephen Marshbrook – Stephen Tompkinson

Stephen Tomkinson as Stephen Marshbrook in The Bay ITV

Where have you seen him before?

DCI Banks, Brassed Off, Drop the Dead Donkey, Wild at Heart

Who is Stephen Marshbrook?

Fortysomething father of three and inheritor of Bill’s hard work, Stephen is a man with goals. Like Bill, his relationships, whether personal or professional, are there to serve him. He doesn’t like to be challenged and has proven that success for him is getting what he wants.

An opinionated patriarch, he has proved to Bill time and again that he is willing to put work before family and manoeuvred himself between Bill and Mark, Bill’s son, to take over the company. Despite the way he’s fractured the family, his marriage to Rose has endured.

Bill Bradwell – James Cosmo

James Cosmo as Bill Bradwell in The Bay ITV

Where have you seen him before?

Highlander, Braveheart, Game of Thrones, His Dark Materials

Who is Bill Bradwell?

Bill is a 70-something Morecambe working-class lad made good. A father to Rose and Mark, a successful solicitor whose family law firm expanded due to his dogged perseverance and skill at identifying opportunities. He’s Teflon-coated and whether it’s his family or his business, he has always known best, providing for his kids and expecting their gratitude and loyalty in return.

Recently his sharp mind has started to let him down and the family that he’s given everything to seem all too keen to take advantage of this. His success meant that his children and grand-children had a life far removed from his humble beginnings and as he enters into retirement, he has to defend his choices.

Andy Warren – Joe Absolom

Joe Absolom as Andy Warren in The Bay ITV

Where have you seen Joe before?

A Confession, EastEnders, Doc Martin

Who is Andy Warren?

Consistently unreliable, Andy has been absent from Lisa and the kids’ lives for nearly a decade, following a series of money troubles and failings as a husband and parent. Now claiming to have turned over a new leaf, Andy has returned with a determination to be a good parent and to rebuild the bridges he’s previously burnt in Morecambe, but this isn’t as easy as he initially thought.

Faced with confusion from Lisa and the kids, Andy musters all the charm he can manage to get them on side, but is unable to win over a protective Penny. Returning at a time when Lisa and the kids are vulnerable, is this the perfect opportunity for him to make amends or to take advantage?

Joe on Andy

“My character, Andy Warren arrives at the start of series two. He's Lisa’s ex and the father of Rob and Abbie. He hasn't been around for about 10 years and turns up out of the blue leaving the kids confused as to why and Lisa wary. Lisa is a tough character and working with Morven has been great, she has made it all feel so real which has been incredible.”

Penny Armstrong – Lindsey Coulson

Lindsey Coulson as Penny Armstrong in The Bay ITV

Where have you seen her before?

Bulletproof, EastEnders, Clocking Off, The Level

Who is Penny Armstrong?

Following Lisa’s demotion, Penny has had to get used to spending less time with her daughter and grandkids, something she’s been struggling to adjust to. Only last year Lisa relied on Penny for most things and, although she felt overused sometimes, Penny has come to realise that not being needed by them is far worse.

Perceptive and loyal, Penny is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to protecting her family and she has her work cut out when a face from the past returns who seems determined to push her out. Always there for Lisa in a crisis, Penny will refuse to be kept in the dark.

Lindsey on season 2

“People should be excited because it's Morven, it's ITV, it's Morecambe Bay. The show is about the fabric of Morecambe and the lives of the people that live there. In the first series you were introduced to these characters and you got to learn a little bit about their home life. In series two we are slowly building the blocks to round out these characters and what happens to them outside of work.”

Abbie Armstrong – Imogen King

Imogen King as Abbie Armstrong ITV

Where have you seen her before?

Darkest Hour, Clique

Who is Abbie Armstrong?

Armed with her mother’s stubbornness and strong-will, 17-year-old Abbie used to be the troublemaker within her family, but she’s grown up a lot over the past year and understands the sacrifices Lisa’s had to make. Increasingly aware of Lisa’s professional 8 and financial struggles, Abbie is determined to step up and seeks opportunities that she hopes will ease the pressure at home. But when the stability of her family is threatened, she is left wondering whether to listen to her head or her heart.

Rob Armstrong – Art Parkinson

Art Parkinson as Rob Armstrong ITV

Where have you seen him before?

Game of Thrones

Who is Rob Armstrong?

As the only male in a family of loud and vibrant women, 15-year-old Rob’s frequently taken a bit of a backseat compared to the rest of the Armstrong gang, until a face from the past returns to stir things up.

Wanting to remain loyal to his mother’s wishes, but desperate to understand a much longed-for truth, a conflicted Rob sees his family divided and learns who he can really rely on. With a sweet, but awkward nature, Rob is ready to experience the highs and lows of first love at school, unaware of the impact this will have on his closest friendship.

Rose Marshbrook – Sharon Small

Sharon Small as Rose Marshbrook in The Bay ITV

Where have you seen her before?

The Inspector Lynley Mysteries, Law and Order UK, Trust Me, Mistresses

Who is Rose Marshbrook?

40-something mother of three and administrator of the family law firm, Rose embodies the maternal role for the whole family. Rose absorbs her family’s needs with a quiet determination and willingness to serve. After a tricky few years that has seen the loss of contact with her daughter, Grace, and distancing from her son, Jamie, Rose has put all of her energy into making sure Oliver feels happy and loved.

Torn between loyalty to a demanding father, husband and brother, is she strong enough?

Mark Bradwell – Steven Robertson 

Steven Robertson as Mark Bradwell in The Bay ITV

Where have you seen him before?

Shetland, Being Human, Luther, The Bletchley Circle

Who is Mark Bradwell?

Thirtysomething Mark wants to prove himself to his dad. Overshadowed by his brother-inlaw and not trusted by Bill to take charge of the family firm, Mark is painfully aware of his failings as others see it. Without the business instinct of Bill, he’s forever playing catch up to be a better version of himself. When his father retires, Mark believes this is his opportunity to step up and secure the leadership role within his family, but he’s illequipped to exploit people, and makes mistakes that he might not be able to undo.

With the encouragement and strength of Stella at his side, Mark fights to have his achievements recognised by the rest of his family and refuses to give up when faced with the declining health of his dad. Wanting to do good, Mark is going to have to choose between his family and doing the right thing.

Stella Bradwell - Sunetra Sarker 

Sunetra Sarker playing Stella Bradwell in The Bay ITV

Where have you seen her before?

Brookside, No Angels, Casulaty, Ackley Bridge, Strictly Come Dancing

Who is Stella Bradwell?

30-something Stella is ambitious, driven and married to Mark. A woman who knows what she wants and won’t stop until she gets it, she has married into a successful family, but to its most passive member. People might think that money is what drives her and that was what attracted her to Mark, but they’d be wrong.

Stella likes nice things, but she’s far more unconventional than her manicured and polished look suggests. She fell for Mark, not for his family’s money, but because he was vulnerable. She liked his mess and he wasn’t scared by hers. An observant witness to the goings on in the household and quick-thinking in a crisis, Stella will help guide Mark to pursue their shared goal.

Jamie Marshbrook - Jack Archer

Where have you seen him before?

Call the Midwife

Who is Jamie Marshbrook?

21-year-old son of Rose and Stephen, Jamie aspires beyond what Morecambe can give him. Having been travelling after his university studies, paid for by Bill, with his boyfriend Theo, he carries the guilt of the opportunities he’s enjoyed that his parents never had.

Despite wanting to see the world, he can’t escape the expectations placed on him to return home. Jamie loves his family, but he’s outgrown them, wants more, and is unsure where to turn. 

Theo Anvari - Arian Nik

What have you seen him before? 

Ackley Bridge, Doctors, Van der Valk, Killing Eve, Dating Amber

Who is Theo

Jamie's boyfriend, who returns with him to Morecambe following the murder of Stephen. In episode 3, his role in the story takes a new significance as its revealed Stephen was not a fan of Theo.

Grace Marshbrook - Amy James-Kelly

Where have you seen her before?

Gentleman Jack, Coronation Street, Safe

Who is Grace Marshbrook?

23-year-old Grace is a free spirit and has escaped the family to start her life again. Compassionate and honest, it’s no coincidence that she’s chosen to work alongside immigrants at the yard, having not lost her empathy for others.

Following an unexpected event, Grace is forced to reunite with the family she’s run away from. Unaware of the pain she’s been holding onto, she thinks she can forgive her family, but can she really forget the past?

Oliver Marshbrook - Leo Ashton 

Where have you seen him before?

Deep Water, Doctors

Who is Oliver Marshbrook?

10-year-old Oliver has an idyllic childhood. A sweet but often cheeky child, Oliver loves his family and enjoys nothing more than a game with his dad when he’s around. When his world falls apart, Oliver must learn a valuable life lesson and realise his words have power.

Frank Mercer – Owen McDonnell

Owen McDonnell as Frank Mercer in The Bay ITV

Where have you seen him before?

Single-Handed, Killing Eve, Spooks, Silent Witness

Who is Frank Mercer?

Independent and proactive, Frank is a sand-grown lad, Morecambe born-and-bred. After a stint in the army, Frank returned to his home town and, without a family to care for, built his own business. With his employees becoming his family, Frank felt a responsibility for Grace when she came to work for him five years ago and acted as a father-figure for her in listening patiently to her problems. Aware of Grace’s troubled past, will he keep her secrets when the police start asking questions?

DS Karen Hobson – Erin Shanagher

Erin Shanagher as DS Karen Hobson ITV

Where have you seen her before?

Peaky Blinders, The Moorside, Emmerdale

Who is DS Karen Hobson?

Promoted and out of uniform, Karen’s got something to prove. Her warmth and quick sense of humour keeps her colleagues going in difficult times, but when the team face an unexpected challenge, Karen focuses her energy into seeking justice. She’ll support the new members of the team, but being there for everyone else may take its toll.

DS James Clarke - Andrew Dowbiggin 

Andrew Dowbiggin as DS James Clarke ITV

Where have you seen him before?

Coronation Street, Emmerdale

Who is Clarkie?

Dedicated and confident, Clarkie is known as the loud-mouthed member of the team and sometimes lets his jokes go too far. Although his heart is in the right place, his desire to impress has meant his humour has begun to grate on his colleagues and he sometimes forgets to think before he speaks. His frustration and hot temper can cause friction with his colleagues and he’s put to the test when he is given a task that demands his patience.

DS Alex 'Stu' Stewart - Simon Manyonda

Simon Manyonda as DS Alex Stewart ITV

Where have you seen him before?

His Dark Materials, Doctor Who, Pennyworth

Who is 'Stu'?

Who is DS Alex Stewart? DS Alex “Stu” Stewart works at West Lancashire Police; he’s a geek, the tech expert on the team, and the go-to person for digging into the detail and doing the nitty-gritty work. In season two, he’s given the responsibility of training up newbie Eddie.

Where have I seen Simon Manyonda before? The theatre and TV actor played Benjamin De Ruyter in the first season of His Dark Materials. He has also appeared in Doctor Who (as Kabel in 2015’s Face the Raven), alongside Anthony Hopkins in the star-studded 2018 King Lear TV movie (as the Duke of Burgundy), and Pennyworth (as Lucius Fox).

DC Eddie Martin - Played by Thomas Law

Thomas Law playing DC Eddie Martin in The Bay ITV

Where have you seen him before?

He played Peter Beale in EastEnders.

Who is  DC Eddie Martin?

Young, keen and enthusiastic, Eddie’s the newest member of the team and desperate to do a good job. Having always dreamed of joining the force, Eddie is proud of how far he’s come and admires his highly experienced colleagues. Taken under Stu’s wing, Eddie follows the instructions given to him with an expert eye, keen to go above and beyond to get the job done.

But the reality of policing hits Eddie hard on this case and he’s left wondering if he’s strong enough to do the job. Has he got the mettle to survive being a cop in this cruel and unforgiving world? 

Watch The Bay on Wednesdays at 9pm on ITV and the ITV Hub.

Catch up on season 1 on BritBox.

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