Water Rats: articles

Allison Cratchley

Positive thinking stops Alison sinking

Dreams do come true as Rosie Dennis found out when she talked to Water Rats Alison Cratchley

If anyone believes in the power of positive thought then it is Alison Cratchley, one of the newest editions to the Water Rats team.

She plays Emma Woods, a no nonsense, one of the boys, tough as hell police diver—and she's thoroughly enjoying her newfound stardom on the small screen.

Fortunately, settling in hasn't really been a problem for Alison as she gets on really well with all the other cast members, although it did take a while to adjust to working on such a male dominated show.

"At first I remember thinking 'Oh my God—so many men.' I had never worked in such a male dominated environment. Now it's all okay. We're all mates and get on really well," she recalls.

Her positive attitudes towards her character and work mates on Water Rats is probably what landed her the role of Emma in the first place. "I really think that if you believe in yourself then it will happen, you know?"

Almost exactly a year to the day before she landed the part, Alison was sitting around with friends pondering over which Australian drama, if any, she would like to end up in.

Fifty one weeks later she found out that she was the new girl on the block—or in the water so to speak, Constable Emma Woods.

"Emma is the one who draws the short straw—welcome to the world of television!" Often she will be the one who goes down to do the dive. "I usually go straight to the bottom on my dives because the equipment is so heavy!"

She has been doing all her won stunts but has only had one minor scare. "On one of my dives I remember going to the bottom thinking I haven't got much air. I radioed the guys up top and said 'Uh, hello—are you going to give me any air down here?'"

The dangerous moments aside, she sees Water Rats as a brilliant opportunity into something much bigger.

"Hopefully Water Rats will be a good foundation for me to move into film." Having said that, Alison is more than satisfied with her new challenge and won't be leaving our small screens in a hurry.

Where does Alison see herself and her future in the industry heading? "Definitely film—but theatre's great too. I love film and television though." If her passion and positive attitude are anything to go by—then look out world, here comes Alison Cratchley.

By Rosie Dennis
May 1998
Soap World