She starred as a lesbian in Metrosexuality and alongside Hollywood superstars in Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason, but it was as a cuddly Teletubby that Pui Fan Lee got her big break.

The cult show was beloved by tear-stained toddlers, hungover students and stressed-out parents alike, but the actress says sweating it out in the cumbersome costume was not fun from the inside and it has taken “years to look back and just laugh.

“Physically it was the most demanding job I’ve ever done,“ she says. “It was the heaviest, hottest thing to wear. People ask if there were rules about how long we could wear it for, but at the time there weren’t.“

She came to London from Nottingham as a student with dreams of being a serious actress, but rolling around as Po, the red Teletubby, sent her down a career path which has seen her end up as a star of CBeebies.

Next month she will be at Millfield Arts Centre with her Show Me Show Me co-star Chris Jarvis to delight families face-to-face with their roadshow.

“It was just one of those auditions I got sent to“, says the 44-year-old, reminiscing about how she got her start in the industry as Po. “I could have been sent anywhere that day.

The diminutive British Chinese actress adds: “I didn’t have a clue what I was getting myself into even when the costume arrived. Until it was broadcast I don’t think anyone did.

“But it’s one of the most memorable, phenomenal kids’ shows.“ It was made in Stratford-upon-Avon and from 1997 to 2001 Pui waddled and eh-ohed her way through 365 episodes, which ran on television until 2008.

Such is its power that earlier this month there was talk of exporting it to North Korea to help undermine the dictatorship there.

Pui now looks back on the time with “fondness“ and still refers to her co-stars by their character names.

“I saw Dipsy not so long ago because he has a young daughter and came to see the show. Tinky Winky has young children and I know Laa Laa had a show. I’m good friends with Andy Davenport, who was the creator.“ She adds: “Through it I discovered this whole new world of children’s entertainment and TV. It wasn’t just put this furry suit on and jump about, although it looks like that sometimes.“

She went on to be the first presenter on CBeebies, alongside Chris Jarvis, who she describes as the “godfather of children’s television” and the pair formed a firm friendship and have worked together ever since.

She shares her London home with her partner and two children and says of the roadshow: “It’s fun and interactive and we try and copy what we do on TV onto the stage. We like to introduce children to the theatre.

“We understand children have a very short attention span, so we have hundreds of props. It’s not crazy, but we like to keep the action going and give them new ideas to think about and then hopefully they won’t fidget and will be in awe.“

But there is none of the glitz and glamour associated with being on television. “We will arrive and put up the set ourselves. We have written it and do everything. Being on stage is the fun bit.

She rarely gets recognised and prefers not being in the celebrity spotlight, spending her spare time with her family.

“I’m always asked advice by young people who want to get into TV and I always ask them why they want to do it.

“I’m very dubious if they think it’s a stepping stone to being a celebrity. The secret is genuinely being interested in the work. If you have any type of cynicism kids see it in your eyes and it’s really not worth it.“

Chris & Pui Roadshow, Millfield Arts Centre, Silver Street, Edmonton, Wednesday, February 19, 11am and 2pm. Details: 0208 8076 680,