Norfolk-born actress Olivia Colman has spoken about the difficulty of getting domestic violence awareness classes in private schools.

The Oscar-winning film star, 49, is a patron for the charity Tender which aims to use the arts to prevent domestic abuse and sexual violence.

Colman said: "I still find it fascinating that it's harder to get these classes into private schools.

"They think they don't have issues like that, and statistically they do.

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"Just because the front door is nice, there can still be coercive, controlling, unpleasant behaviour behind that posh front door.

"You are not avoiding it by being of a higher socioeconomic background and I would love all schools to want their children to have happy lives."

North Norfolk News: Olivia Colman has spoken about her upbringing in Norfolk before Olivia Colman has spoken about her upbringing in Norfolk before (Image: PA)

Colman was born in Norwich and attended Norwich High School for Girls and Gresham's in Holt before studying drama at the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School.

She appeared in a Vogue interview recently where she mentioned her favourite fish and chip shop was French's in Wells, saying her grandfather was born in the flat above it. 

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Colman, speaking to The News Agents podcast, continued: "You need people coming into your schools to say, 'It's actually not cool and it's not funny, and to be a man who is gentle and protective is a much more impressive thing'."

The Peep Show actress - who won the Oscar for best actress in 2019 hit The Favourite - won a host of awards for her breakthrough movie role in 2011 film Tyrannosaur, which included brutal domestic abuse storylines.

Colman added that she does think there have been changes in how people view the LGBTQ+ community, women speaking up and attitudes towards masculinity.

She said: "A masculine role model of gentleness is so much cooler, so much hotter – those people do exist.

"Harry Styles is a very attractive man to the women who fancy him and he is not remotely an aggressive man."