Sophie Lancaster's mum Sylvia has said that it has been "lovely" seeing Coronation Street fans "taking Nina into their hearts".

The campaigner, whose daughter was murdered during an unprovoked vicious attack in 2007, has been working with the soap on the hard-hitting storyline which sees Seb and Nina brutally beaten up.

Sylvia is hoping the story will help raise awareness of the horrific intolerance that can face people purely on the basis of how they look.

"They need to see the reality behind the story, which I think Coronation Street are particularly good at," Sylvia told the Mirror and other news outlets at a press event.

She has been involved in Nina's character development since the early days and has said that she has loved seeing fans becoming attached to the character.

Nina and Seb will be the subject of a brutal attack on Corrie
Nina and Seb will be the subject of a brutal attack on Corrie

Sylvia said: "It was lovely to speak to Mollie [Gallagher] and to actually see that she's quite alternative in real life when she's not playing Nina. But what I thought interestingly was that people have taken Nina to their hearts and that's obviously lovely to see.

"Because people are looking behind the image, they're looking behind the clothes and they're seeing the person, which is a massive part of the work that we're doing, trying to get people to see that underneath all of this, that they're just people same as you or I. And that is really important."

Sylvia also spoke about how the upcoming scenes - which see Abi told about the attack on Seb and Nina - resonated with her own experience.

Speaking about how she had felt at the time, she said: "I couldn't believe it. Why on earth would someone want to attack that little girl who was so pleasant, so kind, so caring?

Sophie Lancaster was murdered in 2007
Sophie Lancaster was murdered in 2007
Sylvia has been working on the storyline with Coronation Street
Sylvia Lancaster has been working on the storyline with Coronation Street

"It just didn't make any sense. And [Sophie's boyfriend] Rob was a very kind, very creative soul and I think that's your initial reaction - 'What on earth?' And then obviously 'Are they ok? Will they be ok?' It's very confusing really. You just aren't able to take it in really."

Soap boss Iain MacLeod also spoke about the impact the attack on Nina and Seb would have for months to come on Corrie.

He said: "It will run and run and run, this story. It's one of those things where a really shocking inciting incident triggers months and months of story repeating under cast at the centre of it. And everything that I've seen is just knockout.

Nina will land in hospital after the vicious and unprovoked attack
Nina will land in hospital after the vicious and unprovoked attack

"It draws in a lot of different families and in the best tradition of Coronation Street storylining, it pits neighbour against neighbour and in some cases, husband against spouse and all of those interesting areas of conflict. It becomes partly about class as well, going forwards.

"I can't say too much about that but in terms of how the criminal investigation unfolds, it becomes about class and background and privilege and there are interesting elements to it that we draw into the story as it unfolds.

"But yeah, at its core we wanted it to be a story about showing the horrific intolerance that can face people purely on the basis of how they look like, perhaps, or what music they might listen to or what subculture they identify with and that is the core of the storyline, right at the finish line. It's a story about intolerance and the reaction to that."

*Coronation Street airs Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 7.30pm and 8.30pm on ITV