The odds on Tricia Penrose winning Celebrity Big Brother have been slashed after bookmakers received a string of bets backing the actress.

William Hill has seen several big bets placed on the star who played barmaid Gina Ward in Heartbeat.

She is now 2/1 to win - down from 40/1 in less than a week - and is seen as the main rival to 8/13 favourite Rylan Clark.

William Hill spokesman Joe Crilly said: "Never before have we seen a Big Brother gamble like this.

"Last Wednesday, Tricia was 40/1 to win the show but now, after a sustained gamble, she is the second favourite and our best chance of getting Rylan beaten."

Third favourites to win are US reality show couple Heidi and Spencer who are 10/1, with former Steps star Claire Richards and Neighbours actor Ryan Moloney the 33/1 outsiders.