10 October 1998

It's the eyes you notice first. Twinkly blue, they're flirty and mischievous and dead sexy. He's one of those men who makes you feel like the centre of the universe when you walk into a room, or in this case his trailer which is his base while he's away from home filming. "I've got this really nice tiramisu coffee. You'll like it," he says boiling up the kettle and finding a clean mug. Coffee tasting of sweet spongy Italian dessert sounds suspiciously sickly. But it turns out to be surprisingly tasty. Rather like Robson Green really.

On screen the 34-year-old actor has a ladd-ish quality which appeals to the men and the ability to turn female viewers of all ages to jelly. In the flesh he is relaxed and friendly, passionate about socialism, his home footie team Newcastle, fishing - "Shame I haven't got me photo of the fish I caught with me... a 12 pounder" - and his family. And he's brimming with confidence and enthusiasm about his work.

Despite his slight build, he looks just as good out of his clothes as in them as is apparent when he strips off once again for the Reckless sequel. "It wasn't steamy," he protests as I ask about the love scene where the couple are caught out by the builders. "You're talking like it was on at 11 o'clock at night at some dodgy cinema in Soho. If people fall in love they get their kit off."

The love he's talking about is between his character, Dr Owen Springer, a thirty something medic living with older woman Anna (Francesca Annis) who is now divorced from her consultant husband Richard Crane, played by Michael Kitchen. He proposes marriage and it's a case of will they or won't they tie the knot.

Infidelity is a subject he refuses to be drawn on. "There are terrible consequences to it but I'm not going to moralise. I have no opinions on it. I'm not going to say it's disgusting and how dare you. But there are terrible consequences to it and you will hurt people. If there is no hope in a relationship, what are you supposed to do? Suffer in silence?"

One relationship that hasn't played such an important role in his life recently is that between Robson and his showbiz singing partner, former Soldier Soldier star, Jerome Flynn. Considering how close they were it's extraordinary that the two men no longer see each other. "We're still mates but I haven't seen him in nearly two years," says Robson, pouring some more coffee. "They were asking us to do more singing and I thought 'I don't want to do it'. And then Jerome wanted to go in his own direction. It's a natural progression of people wanting to do their own things."

There's no doubt this cheeky, charming, talented Geordie with humble roots can afford to do whatever he likes in life. But most of his money these days is ploughed into his own production company, which has just made the eight-part drama Grafters, which is soon to be screened on ITV, with Robson and Stephen Tompkinson as two brothers whose business brings them to London.

On his own personal journey to the top as one of TV's highest paid actors, Robson has learned a valuable lesson. "Never trust anyone who says 'trust me'. What I have learned is that when you become as popular as we were - and that's all we were popular - you become a commodity. And there are a lot of sharks out there and they will exploit you to the hilt. It became ridiculous the way we were being exploited by people close to us. You have to have your wits about you so you can bite back."

He may be a star but he doesn't act like one - and he certainly doesn't want to be one. "I hope I don't play the celebrity. I'll do an interview to promote a show but in terms of promoting my personality, I don't want to do that. I like fishing far better than pontificating about myself.'

Pam Francis/ TV Times