Normal People star Aoife Hinds has told of how she was racially abused while filming the hit drama on the streets of Dublin.

Hinds, the daughter of actors Ciarán Hinds and Hélène Patarot, told The Sunday World she regretted that she did not allow her co-star Paul Mescal to confront the "group of preteens" about their behaviour, or "calmly go over to them myself".

She said the incident happened while they were filming a scene, and that the youths shouted a racist slur at her. 

"We were all just baffled," she recounted.

Aoife Hinds as Helen and Paul Mescal as Connell in Normal People

"Paul started to walk towards them as they were running off. I told him not to bother as I wanted to brush if off and get back to the scene, but that was obviously a defence mechanism.

"I later regretted that and wished Paul had have gone over to them, to tell them it wasn't OK to say those kind of things. Or better, to calmly go over to them myself.

"All the crew were extremely supportive, needless to say shocked, but it just goes to show how racism is ingrained in our society when kids are being brought up hearing all these kind of things."

Hinds, who grew up in Paris, also told the paper about her experience of racism in other cities. 

"It happens everywhere, it has happened to me in Madrid, in Paris, in the south of France," she said. "One of my friends was punched by a full-grown man in Oxford Street in London just before lockdown.

"There was an article in The Guardian about the amount of gun sales in the US since the start of the epidemic [sic] and how a lot are first time Asian-American buyers who fear for their safety and lives - that's just heartbreaking and says it all."

Hinds added that it was "just really lovely spending an extended time in Dublin" filming Normal People "as it's a place I have visited often since I was young".

"When you're filming something you never know how it's going to be received, but there was definitely a feeling of being part of something that was quite special, not only on the creative side but also on the human side. The cast and crew were all just so warm and brilliant."

Watch Normal People on the RTÉ Player.