Bright graduated from the Birmingham School of Acting, part of Birmingham City University, in 2007 and has since been based in London. She has adopted various acting roles since then, from an open-air puppetry play, a punk rock musical feature film Silly Billy for Jackson Films, to Cross Purpose, a 1940s drama performed in the heart of London's fringe. She has appeared in short films Red Balloon and Sometimes the Moon Is Velvet. She appears as 'Anna' in the 2012 UK feature film Life Just Is. In 2016/17, Bright filmed the lead role of Jessica Slade in the British feature film King of Crime, alongside Mark Wingett, Claire King, Nicholas Brendon, Vas Blackwood and her real-life partner Jonno Davies. The film was released in October 2018.
Poppy was introduced in two episodes on 11 and 13 January 2011, in "filler" scenes which were substituted for scenes cut from the controversial baby swap storyline, in which Ronnie Branning (Samantha Womack)'s son James, dies of sudden infant death syndrome and she secretly swaps him with Kat Moon (Jessie Wallace)'s son, Tommy." A spokeswoman for EastEnders confirmed that the scenes had been edited following viewers' strong response to the story, but said that no complete scenes were removed: "Given the audience response to this storyline, we felt on this occasion that it was appropriate to respond and make some changes. The vast majority of material remains intact and we don't believe that those trims we have made will weaken or detract from the overall storyline for viewers."
In an interview with the Daily Mirror, Bright stated that her first scene was her favourite throughout her tenure, as "all [she] could think was, 'I'm sitting on a bench in the Square!'". Kylie Babbington, who played Jodie Gold, revealed in May 2011 that Poppy would be returning and would have comical scenes. Bright made her return on 30 June 2011. Poppy and Jodie were reportedly used to add humour to the soap, in the style of reality-drama series The Only Way is Essex. On 24 October 2011, it was announced that the pair were to leave the show; they made their final appearance on 14 November 2011. According to an EastEnders spokesperson, there is potential for Poppy to appear again in the future. In an interview with Inside Soap, EastEnders executive producer Bryan Kirkwood said of a possible return, "We may see Poppy pop up as I'm a big fan of Rachel Bright and the character, but Kylie is keen to pursue other roles."
Bright re-joined the cast of EastEnders, appearing on-screen from 12 June 2012 until she left the soap again on 30 January 2014.
|Sometimes the Moon Is Velvet||Hettie|
|2012||Life Just Is||Anna|
|2016||Milk and Honey:The Movie||Jessica Slade|
- Julia Simmons in A Murder Is Announced (Nationwide Tour, 2015/16)
- Lucy in Dracula (Edinburgh Fringe Festival, 2014)
- The Girl in Bus Stop Kisser (Camden Peoples Theatre, 2014)
- Polly in Electronica (Red Hedgehog, 2008)
- "Sometimes the Moon is Velvet (2010)".
- "King of Crime released".
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- Kilkelly, Daniel (14 November 2011). "Phil's past comes back to haunt him". Digital Spy. Hearst Magazines UK. Retrieved 8 November 2011.
- Kilkelly, Daniel (6 November 2011). "Corrie clash, 'Enders exits, E'dale hotel shock, 'Oaks arrival". Digital Spy. Hearst Magazines UK. Retrieved 6 November 2011.
- "Secrets of the Square". Inside Soap (46): 42. 19–25 November 2011.
- Klompus, Jack (24 September 2013). "'EastEnders' axes four stars: AJ, Poppy, Carl and Kirsty to leave soap". Digital Spy. Hearst Magazines UK. Retrieved 24 September 2013.