Robson Green says filming Like Father, Like Father taught him a valuable lesson about parenting. "It really struck me just how important parenting is to a child. The decisions parents make when they are bringing a child up have a profound effect. If you bring that child up in a violent background, they will be violent in some way. And if you abuse or traumatise a child, you destroy their life.

"Keeping secrets from a child is the worst thing you can do. The secret that Dee has kept has a traumatic effect on her son Jamie. A child's love is unconditional and they need 100 per cent honesty. Hopefully this show will make people think."

The themes of the story were part of what attracted Robson to play schoolteacher Dominic Milne, the boyfriend of Dee Stanton (Jemma Redgrave).

"I thought the script was very interesting. It starts off with very ordinary people leading very ordinary lives, and suddenly their history, secrets they've kept from others are revealed, and all the skeletons come out. It's a destructive background to what is in a sense a love story.

"Dominic is a teacher who's happy with his lot. He's had trauma in the past but he's got over that. But suddenly, you turn a corner and chaos hits you. Trauma can happen to you in a millisecond, and if there's chaos around you, the way you behave becomes chaotic. When Dee tells him she was married to a serial killer it actually makes her more attractive to him, because she has survived it all. But it also has the potential to destroy everything that's precious to him."

Adds Robson: "It was a very enjoyable job and Jemma was really good to work with. She's got amazing charisma and she's incredibly professional, totally committed to the work. Dee has to deal with her demons and if you're going to go down that road, you've really got to go for it and Jemma did. She's a very powerful actress. I was also very impressed with the young cast. I went in to read with them and they were fantastic, word perfect and confident, which was terrifying!"

Playing an English teacher required Robson to go back to school. "I had to write on the blackboard and give lessons, but thanks to my role in Wire in the Blood I can now multi-task - write about something and talk about something completely different at the same time. We had to talk about Othello, though, which wasn't my favourite play.

"I was a bit nervous about walking into a girls' school because I thought there was going to be so much attitude. But we couldn't have had a more helpful set of young people. It did take me back and it was nice when they asked me to do a little chat on their awards day."

Robson has just filmed a new series of Wire in the Blood with his company Coastal Productions, but working for Ecosse Films meant time off from worrying about budgets and schedules. "It was nice not being the main lead and having a couple of days off while Jemma was doing all the work! On Wire, I'm always thinking about how much things cost. It was great not to have to worry about that and just think about the work. Ecosse is a very good company and Like Father, Like Son was very relaxed."

Robson can also be seen in ITV1 festive drama Christmas Lights with Mark Benton. "It's a gem of a script about two friends who become enemies. The only way they can get back at each other is by outdoing each other with their Christmas lights. It's about male bonding and male stupidity and I'm really proud of it."

Robson is spending Christmas with his wife Vanya and five-year-old son Taylor before returning to film Coastal's first commission for the BBC, daytime drama Beaten about domestic violence seen through a child's eyes.

But before that he celebrates his 40th birthday. "I remember being seven and looking at a person of 40 and thinking it was so old. But here I am. Nothing much has changed. I've just acquired a vocabulary and a bit of a hairy chest. I never take anything for granted and I always try to see the good in people."