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Joshua Stevenson
Josh
Portrayed by William Rush
First Appearance Series 5 Ep 01
Last Appearance Series 8 Ep 24
Cause/Reason Job in Manchester working for Lorraine Donnegan
Born 28th April 1994 (age 18 last appearance)
Occupation Trainee Manager, Call Centre
Relationships
Parents Tom Clarkson (Father - Deceased)
Georgia Stevenson (Mother-Estranged)
Romances Lauren Andrews
Nate Gurney
Grady
Grandparents Unnamed Gran (Tom's mum)
Aunts and Uncles Ian Clarkson
Cousins Katie Clarkson

Sarah Clarkson

Joshua "Josh" Stevenson is the son of English teacher Tom Clarkson. Josh is a good looking average lad, with Tom's looks. He grew up with his mother Georgia and their status as a single-parent family has made Josh fiercely defensive of her.

Josh rejects more macho pursuits like sport and football in favour of music and he is a capable, if not a utterly dedicated, student. He now has a good relationship with Tom, but can find it hard to give his dad the benefit of the doubt – understandable considering he spent the first fifteen years of his life believing Tom (who never knew of Josh’s existence) had abandoned him at birth.

Series 5

Josh appears from series 5 episode 1 onward. Tom finds that his past is being unearthed because of Josh. He had been sending Tom pictures of him and Georgia from 10 years ago when Tom was one of her uni pupils.

In episode 3, Tom decides to visit Georgia to ask why Josh is sending him pictures of them and she later tells him that as a result of their one night stand she became pregnant with Josh. Tom drives off leaving Georgia unknown of his next moves with Josh.

In episode 4 Tom tells Josh that he knows he is his son and that he didn't know about him, or him even being his biological son. Josh doesn't believe him at first, thinking he just wanted to abandon him but later Tom and Josh meet up and they have a deep conversation. Josh tells Tom that he's his imaginary hero. Tom gets him tickets to a football match and Josh tells him he doesn't like football but later decides to go anyway and asks who's playing so as to spend time with Tom.

In episode 5, Tom and Georgia are talking during Josh's football match. Tom tells her that they need to be a family for him. Josh's relatedness to Tom is made known to the staff room.

In episode 6, Josh's attempts to push his mum and Dad together results in an admission by his mum. During dinner Tom makes a joke and Georgia mentions a turkey baster. Tom, unclear of what this means, demands she tell him what she's talking about. She later admits how she used him when she tells him how she stole his sperm to get pregnant. Tom angrily leaves and threatens to tell their son.

Josh finds out in episode 7 how he was conceived, leaving him shaken and confused saying some hurtful things to both Tom and Georgia. It takes Josh a while to really understand what his Mum did, leaving an awkward relationship with him, Georgia and Tom.

In episode 8, Tom asks if everything's okay at home, Tom tries to get closer to Josh, but Josh still refuses to let him in. After the worst possible outcome, he still persists in his attempts to get closer by taking him to an old allotment for some father-son bonding time. They both speak together and grow closer. At the end of the episode Josh approaches Tom and Rose. He later urges Tom to race with him and play football. Tom and Josh are playing football with Luke and when they leave Tom rustles Josh's hair. Josh is not seen in episode 9 (which is the only episode he's not seen in).

Josh is not seen in episode 10 much but we see him practising and performing in the talent show alongside his best friend Luke Pendle. Josh calls Tom 'Dad' for the first time, and is later happily embarrassed by him. In the next scene, Josh decides he wants to take a big step with Tom by moving in with him. It seems that Josh doesn't want to live with Georgia anymore after being lied to for 14 years. We don't see anymore of her. Even though Josh left her to go live with his father, he is still fiercely defensive of her, perhaps rendering him a little over-sensitive to ridicule. Josh is always trying to be the son Tom wants.

Later in Series 5 Spring term, Josh starts treating Tom more like a mate instead of his Dad, and doesn't give him the respect he should. In episode 11 new boy Finn Sharkey makes his presence known, quickly making friends with Josh and Amy through his lack of respect for boundaries. Josh sticks up for Tom when Finn starts trouble in class. Tom starts to become concerned about who Josh is influenced by and hangs around with.

In episode 12 Finn decides to bring alcohol on the school trip which ends in disaster and puts Josh in hospital. Tom has strong words with him and tells him to stay well away from Finn. Josh sits in silence as he is shocked to see this side of his Dad. Finn later goes round to Josh's house to see if he is alright but Tom makes it very clear that he doesn't want him anywhere near his son by kicking him out of the house and warning him to stay away from Josh.

Episode 14 shows Josh in a whole new light. It's Josh's 15th birthday and Tom is planning a party. Josh and Lauren's flirting picks up pace, only to come to an abrupt end when the secret of Lauren's large birthmark on her back is revealed to the whole school. When Josh sees this he becomes disgusted with her and joins in with bullying her along with Finn, Paul, Bolton and other boys. Unknown of what Finn is doing, Tom accidentally lets him bully Lauren in class. Totally humiliated and desperate, Lauren steals hydrogen peroxide from the science lab to try to bleach the birthmark away but instead ends up getting an acid burn. Josh's treatment of Lauren leads to Tom's first disappointment in his son and grounding him again. He also tells him that he doesn't think it's working and is thinking about sending Josh back to his mum, leaving Josh worried and confused.

In episode 16, Kim notices how Josh is treating Tom and has a word with him. Tom defends his son which he later regrets. Finn's disruptive behaviour persuades Josh and Amy to join him in smoking a legal high. For Amy, it's a far-from-pleasant experience and Josh has further side-effects when he starts hallucinating in class. Tom, worried about his son's behaviour, questions Josh who "fesses" up – believing that his dad would be cool about it as they are more like friends than father and son. However, Josh is stunned and humiliated by Tom's angry reaction and in retaliation, he spikes Tom's lunch with the drug. Tom drives Kim to the hospital while drugged and it causes him to crash, putting both him and Kim in hospital. Kim sits with Josh at the hospital and has word. Josh tells her he's sorry and hugs her. He goes to see his Dad and holds his hand and cries. He tells Tom that he loves him and begs him not to send him back to his Mum's house so he gives Josh another chance but also cracks a joke and grounds Josh for a 'year' but Josh must respect him and start treating him like his father, which he does.

Tom and Josh are not seen again until episode 20, Prom! They are seen dancing together, this is the last we see of them until series 6.

Series 6

Series 6 Josh now in year 11. Lauren wants more from Josh, she wants to be his girlfriend and have a sexual relationship, but Josh feels very different.

Episode 4, Josh starts to question his sexuality. Josh directs his frustration towards new student Connor with a homophobic insult, this results into a fight, Tom puts Josh on the bench and Josh later nudges Tom. But a much deeper issue is revealed when he tries to kiss Finn, who is disgusted with his friend's behaviour and quickly spreads word of it throughout the school. Following a fight, the two friends are forced to explain their actions to Tom and Charlie. However, Josh denies the kiss ever happened, much to Tom's relief, after the word spread throughout the school Josh finds it hard to keep his lie under control and later tries to prove everyone wrong by getting physical with Lauren. They are caught kissing in a store room by Charlie, not before Josh tries to tell Lauren what he really feels. Lauren hurt and angry storms off. Josh is sent to the cooler but runs off scared to face Tom again. He is ready to pack-up and head back to his Mum's he admits what he has done to Tom, he also tells him that hes not getting any second chances if he mucks-up in the future.

Episode 5 Josh is picked on by Finn. Tom decides to act for the benefit of his son and asks him to join a self defence class. He later admits to Josh that he wants him to stick-up for himself. Josh gets angry and goes off on his own. He later confronts Finn, and tells him that its up to him if he wants to carry their friendship on. They resume their friendship. Tom catches Finn helping Josh with his defencive skills. This is where Tom finally gets that his son is gay, but Tom understands, he just wants Josh to be happy. Later on Josh yet again under the influence of 'bestfriend' Finn, Josh and Finn are seen teasing Harry Fisher leading to their exclusion for a week and Josh having a severe telling of by his dad.

Episode 13 Josh has a boyfriend, Nate. Nate's uncomfortable relationship with his Dad hits rock bottom. Josh and Nate spot a tag on the wall. This is when Matthew Gurney discovers that his son is gay. Unable to accept the news, Matthew blames the school for encouraging Nate's sexuality and orders him to keep away from Josh. Tom intervenes with some words of advice, prompting reconciliation with violent consequences. Tom is beat-up by Matthew. Josh is angry by what has happend to his father and takes it out on Nate, he later comforts Nate as he is scared he will turn out like his father. Few weeks After Tom vicious attack he decides to return, Tom messes up when he pushes Kyle to the ground, Josh is worried but helps and supports his Dad, Tom leaves for a while and returns when hes ready with his son's help.

In episode 17 Finn and Ronan have an illiegal drinking party, Josh and Nate are seen dancing together, Kyle forces Denzil to phone Josh's Dad Tom, to tell him about the party, Tom and Cesca breaks it up, Tom gets Josh, Sam, Nate and Finn into trouble, he tells Josh he expected more from him, and most likley grounds him again.

In episode 20 Finn, Sam, Josh and Nate are seen in the pantoimime "Cindafella", it back fires when Denzil and Kyle's plan ends horribly wrong for Finn. After series 6, Josh does not go out with Nate and we dont see or hear of Nate again.

Series 7

Josh is now in Year 13 (in the second half of the series, year 12 in the first), and is at his lowest points. Josh finds it hard to see Tom so hurt after the death of friend and classmate Sambuca, Josh asks Tom if he alright at the memorial, Tom wraps his arm around Josh and says 'I am if you are' they both deal with it together, as a family.

Episode 10, Finn brags about passing his test he dares Josh to steal his Dad's car keys to take the car for a spin, under his influence Josh does so. Finn, Josh, Lauren and Amy bunk off and take the car for a spin, they almost run over Chalky. They are all seen in the cooler Tom is mad and gives them a lecture, Finn still hurt from Sam's death shouts 'No one died Tom' angrily Josh shouts at him and backs Tom.

Episode 22, of series 7 shows Josh smoking weed Tom finds out and is not at all happy pushing Josh into the toliet doors demanding him to throw it in the toliet and grounding him (Josh is grounded alot as he is in every episdoe). Josh apologies to Tom, but Tom can't seem to trust Josh after that, keeping a close eye on him from then.

Episode 23, Josh's friends considered their pot smoking a one off, Josh is unable to stop using. When his father finds out, Josh promises to kick the habit. However, Josh gets a phone call from his dealer Grady, who later shows up at school and shamelessly flirts with Josh and gets him into thinking they have a date. However, Grady only does this to manipulate Josh into buying more drugs, Josh turns up to class stoned and ends up being sick over his teacher, and it dosen't take Tom long to find out what his son has been doing yet again. Nikki spots Josh leaning against a wall stoned, Nikki tells him she's used to dealing with stoners in the barracks, she soaks him in the showers to sober him up. When Josh spots Grady kissing a girl he realizes he’s been duped and they get into a fight Grady throw's Josh to the ground with some serious threat's giving by him. Tom is furious to find out what Josh has been up to and makes it clear that he’s not going to intervene should the school decide to punish Josh by suspending him, Josh tells Michael he feels to much pressure, from school and Tom. Tom worrys about him.

Episode 24 Josh's behaviour becomes increasingly erratic, as he freaks out when the fire alarm goes off, he smashes the glass and cuts his hand, Finn tries to calm him down, but it dosent work he tells Tom, Tom worries about Josh and runs off to find him, Tom and Nikki follow a trail of blood leading to Josh. When Tom and Nikki find Josh, Josh asks Tom why its all going wrong, Tom cant answer. Nikki urges Tom to seek professional help. Josh is referred to a psychiatrist by the GP, who explains to Tom that it could be schizophrenia.

In epsidoe 25, Tom scared by the news is unable to tell Josh, until Nikki urges Tom to for the sake of Josh. Tom makes a hard decision and tells Josh, Josh tells Tom that hes scared, Tom comforts him by hugging him and telling him that hes going to be alright.

In Episode 26, Josh doesnt want to go to school after the news, he lies to Tom and tells him he feels ill, Lauren later comes round to see why hes not in, Josh tells her, she conforts him, Nikki and Tom later spot Josh laughing with Lauren.

Episode 27 It's the start of exam season at Waterloo Road and Josh is struggling to cope with the workload. Without his medication, his mental health begins to spiral out of control. Josh becomes obsessed with an old plague pit underneath the school and when some of the girls play a trick on him, he starts to believe that spirits are trying to contact him. Soon, his behaviour gets worse, Josh st to itch his arm until it bleeds. He is then seen lying on the floor with his exam paper in his hands. Tom confused and worried, he runs over to Josh. Josh shouts at Tom for touching him and walks out of the hall. Tom asks Josh whats wrong,Josh is very upset and crying and freaks out and tells Tom he has the plague. Nikki Boston calls an ambulance. Lauren Andrews comes running in and tells Tom that Josh has stopped taking his medication. Tom is angry but upset. Josh doesnt want to go in the ambulance but Tom grabs him and hugs him tightly, he tells him it will all be alright. Tom seems to blame him self for what happend to Josh. Nikki comforts him by telling him hes a great dad and Josh know's it, this helps Tom deal with it a little. He is seen in the ambulance with his friends looking upset and worried behind him.

And episode 30. Josh is taking his pills again, and gets annoyed at Tom over his suit, Tom worrys, but Josh apologies as hes feeling nervous. Josh returns to school for the final day and can't believe how his best friend Finn was dragged into the gangs so easily he also cant believe that Waterloo road is closing down. Michael tells the school that the prom is canceled. At the same time, Tom is concerned for Josh more than anything after finding out that Josh has also been dragged into the gang trouble. Josh is caught by Eugene's gang and is forced to go with them they lean him over the edge of a car park. Ronan soon finds out the location, and Tom and Ronan race to find Josh. When Ronan and Tom find Josh, Tom goes ballistic and tells them to get off his son, Tom urges Eugene to fight him but Eugene backs down. Tariq receives a crossbow in the post, ordered by Kyle to get payback on Finn. They smuggle it into the school and use it at the prom. Ronan and Josh find out that prom isnt canceled and that Finn is in danger. Tom, Josh and Ronan race to the school, Josh sees Kyle trying to aim for Finn, Josh pushes Finn out the way, leaving the aim for Josh's arm, Tom runs to Josh who is lying on the floor coverd in blood, He screams on someone to call an ambulance. Josh is taking away by the ambulance not before Finn thanks him,  he just need's a few stitches. At the end of the episode we see Tom, Josh, Grantly, Maggie, Michael, Sian, Denzil, Scout, Phoenix, Chalky and Tariq. The episode ends with the Old School being converted into new apartments while the students and staff considering the move take a trip to Scotland to visit the new school. Approaching the border Denzil asks if they can stop and they pull over at a lay by where just as Grantly proposes to Maggie. Suddenly, a large Van swerves off the road out of control, hurtling towards the group of teachers and students with Chalky at the front of the group... 

Series 8

Josh returns to Waterloo Road, with his dad in series eight to resit his exams. Josh and Tariq start to become good friends, after Tariq's accident. He helps him when Lula says some hurtful things about his disability, Josh tries to convince Tariq that life is worth living but Tariq isn't interested. He works out that Tariq is trying to commit sucide when he gives Josh his ring because he can not deal with he injury and tries to stop him. Tom also must learn to let Josh grow-up as he is earning his independence. Josh faces up to his future - he needs to live his own life away from Waterloo road but worries about how Tom will take it, Josh leaves to go to manchester to work at a call center, he tells Tom that he will make him proud, eventhough Tom is already proud of him, he tells Josh this.

Josh returns for a guest episode, series 8, episode 24. Josh comes back to see his Dad and along with some hard hitting news, Tom soon finds out that his sons into thousands of pounds worth of debt, he goes through his wallet, Josh angry and embarrassed tells Tom exactly how he feels. Josh later finds out from Maggie that his Dad will be giving Grantly his kidney unable to cope with the news confronts Tom, Tom tells him to get over himself and Josh reacts in rage and hurts Tom's feelings. They both later apologise. Josh tells Tom it's a great thing hes doing they smile at each other and they both leave.

This is William Rush's last episode of Waterloo Road, Josh is not mentioned after his dad Tom died and does not appear at the memorial held by the school. Josh got a job with Lorraine Donnegan in Manchester, he returned in series 8 episode 24 but only for this episode

Quotes

  • "me and dad make a mean spag bol, don't we?"- Last line
  • "Im Josh Stevenson"- First line
  • "Hes lying Dad! I dont know what hes on about!"- Josh to Tom denying he kissed Finn
  • "Im sorry Dad!" - Josh after his dad Tom caught him with weed
  • "SHE DOESNT JUDGE ME! she made me see I dont have to use drugs to solve my problems"- Josh to Tom after he is caught with drugs again
  • "I told him he didnt need to treat me any different from what he did before, I'm still me"- Josh talking to his dad about Finn
  • "Accidents happen Dad!"- Josh pleading with Tom after been caught drinking
  • Finn you either be my mate or you dont its your choice, I don't need so called mates who can't accept me who I am and for the record I don't fancy you"- Josh talking to Finn after kissing him
  • I've told you everything, stuff I'd never tell anyone else"- Josh talking to Nate
  • "I love you dad, please dont send me away"- Josh crying over Tom after spiking his dinner
  • Has anyone seen my dad?- Josh yells down the hallways multiple ways throughout his time on WR

Trivia

  • Josh looks very alike to his dad Tom, apart from his eye colour, which he got from his mum.
  • When Josh met Tom he was 14, in episode 14 of series 5, it was his 15th birthday, his last apperance he was 18. Josh grew 3 years on Waterloo Road.
  • Josh has the same eyes as his dad, pointed out by his mum to Tom.
  • Josh can sing and play guitar.
  • Josh was best friends with Luke Pendle, now Finn Sharkey.
  • Josh is openly gay, he tried to kiss Finn.
  • Josh has cut off contact with his Mother, for lying to him about his Dad
  • Josh had a romance with Nate Gurney, who was forced to leave Waterloo Road by his father.
  • Josh was diagnosed with schizophrenia after becoming addicted to cannabis, he was born with it.
  • Josh and Tariq became friends after the crash in Series 7
  • Josh's Father is Tom Clarkson, who died after falling off the school roof in Series 8.

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