Emmerdale real-life couples – sad split, cute kids and co-star affair heartbreak

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    Emmerdale has introduced viewers to many iconic soap couples – but did you know that lots of the stars have had off-screen romances too?

    Despite some characters not even sharing scenes, or becoming romantically involved in the soap, love has blossomed between the cast – with many leading to sweet marriages and children.

    However, other couples have not gone the distance – with some splitting up amicably, while others have called time on their relationship following shocking affair revelations.

    READ MORE: Emmerdale Kim Tate star says she longs for shorter schedule as filming is 'killing' her

    As the ITV celebrates turning 50, Daily Star takes a look a the real-life couples who've both worked on or still currently appear on the show.

    Matthew Wolfenden and Charley Webb

    Matthew Woldfenden and Charley Webb are one of Emmerdale's most famous couples, with their romance blossoming since meeting on set in 2007.

    They married 11 years later in a secret ceremony in 2018, surprising guests who thought they were attending the event for Charley's 30th birthday instead.

    The couple's 100 guests arrived at Ripley Castle in Harrogate before being told the surprise news that Charley and Matthew were actually getting married.

    Charity Dingle star Emma Atkins, who was one of the bridesmaids, revealed to OK! Magazine that she was gutted that she was not 'dressed' for the occasion, saying: "I was gutted because I didn't look that great, and she had told me 'make sure you come looking great' and I thought 'alright, it's only a 30th'.

    "When I turned out to be one of the bridesmaids I was absolutely devastated," said Emma, but added that the day was "brilliant."

    Along with their surprise wedding ceremony, the couple have also welcomed three children together called Buster, Bowie and Ace.

    Peter Amory and Claire King

    Claire King has been delighting fans for over 38 years as Kim Tate in Emmerdale, and during her original stint on the soap she married Peter Amory, who played her stepson Chris Tate, in 1994.

    However, it was reported by The Mirror that their 10-year marriage broke down when it was revealed that Peter was having an affair with one of their Emmerdale co-stars, Samantha Giles, who played Bernice Blackstock.

    Talking to The Mirror in 2005, Claire said: "I questioned Pete and he admitted it had been going on for a while.

    "He told me it was over but then it started again. At that point I said: 'Well, you have to go with her then, because it obviously isn't going to stop.'"

    However, she has said that she does still get along with both Peter and Samantha, saying: "We were close and we'll always be mates."

    Although the couple split up, there were rumours that the two would rekindle their romance, but this did not work out, with Kim Tate actress Claire King telling Channel 5 series In Therapy: "Then they [Peter and Samantha] split and we thought we’d work it out, then they got together again.

    "Six months ­later… finished. I felt as though it was the end of something but also a failure. And I didn’t want it to be a failure.

    "It was a loss as well. It was a failure of a marriage but the loss of a good friend. I really didn’t know it would ­affect me so badly."

    James Sutton and Sammy Winward

    Although James is well known to viewers as John Paul McQueen in Channel 4 soap Hollyoaks, he also had a role in another rival soap, playing Ryan Lamb in Emmerdale between 2009 and 2011.

    Ryan Lamb struck up a romance with fellow dales resident Katie Sugden, and off-screen, stars James Sutton and Sammy Winward began dating in real life too.

    However in 2010, it was confirmed that the couple had split, but still remained good friends, with a source telling The Sun: "Sammy and James seemed perfect for each other."

    They added: "They are a strikingly gorgeous couple and the chemistry you saw on screen was there in real life, too.

    "It's a shame they've split up but they're both being very professional."

    Kate Brooks and Michelle Hardwick

    Vanessa Woodfield actress Michelle Hardwick was originally married to music teacher Rosie Nicholl from 2015-2017, before finding romance with Emmerdale producer Kate Brooks.

    They made their relationship official in October 2018, with a sweet Instagram post that featured a photo of the couple, with the caption: "It will all work out in the end."

    They later married in a stunning ceremony in 2019 at the famous Graceland Garden Chapel, based at Elvis Presley's former home, in Memphis, Tennessee.

    It was a small and intimate ceremony, with only the couple in attendance. However, it is reported that they threw a huge party for friends and family on their return home.

    The actress shared a sweet snap of them outside the chapel on Instagram, captioning the post: "In over 100 degrees heat, on Tuesday 10th September, I became Mrs Brooks."

    Seven months after Michelle and Kate married, the happy couple announced that they were expecting their first child.

    The couple had IVF treatment, and in October of that year, their son Edward 'Teddy' Peter Brooks was born.

    Michelle has since shared sweet snaps of her and Kate with Teddy, including one post where they spent time with friends over lunch.

    The actress captioned the post, "Teddy; the lad who lunches. Perfect afternoon with our gorgeous girls."

    Fans went wild for the photo, with one saying: "Teddy is so big! Looks like a fun time," while a second added: "Teddy is growing so much! He’s so adorable."

    Fiona Wade and Simon Cotton

    Emmerdale resident Fiona Wade has been involved in many romances while in the dales, including relationships with Cain Dingle, David Metcalfe and Pete Barton.

    However off-screen, Fiona Wade is happily married to actor Simon Cotton, who had a brief role in the soap as a Home Estate Agent in 2017.

    Simon proposed one year later in a sweet series of events, which saw him link parts of Fiona's life together in a romantic trip to both London and Paris.

    Speaking on ITV daytime show Lorraine, Fiona said: "He is incredible, I don't think we have long enough to go into the proposal, it was so long and so epic. He is incredible, he is so romantic, I could go on. He is amazing!

    "It was a sequence of clues, involving my best friends and my mother.

    "And he took me to this beautiful hotel in London, then he took me to my home where my dad passed away. It was candles and flowers and then the next day we went to Paris."

    The couple married in a sweet ceremony in 2019, and to celebrate their second wedding anniversary in October 2021, Simon shared a snap of their big day on Instagram, with the caption: "Two years walking through this life together. I can’t wait for a million more."

    Jeff Hordley and Zoe Henry

    Cain Dingle star Jeff Hordley and Rhona Goskirk actress Zoe Henry, originally met in drama school, but found love after they were reunited on the set of Emmerdale in 2001.

    The couple married two years later in 2003, and they have two children together – Violet, 15, and 11-year-old Stan – as well as their adorable dog Ronald.

    Zoe has also revealed that the couple watch their diets closely, and grow their own food at home, after husband Jeff was diagnosed with Crohn's disease, telling Loose Women: "Jeff has Crohn's. He was diagnosed when he was about 18, so he was 23 when I met him, and it's sort of changed our lives."

    Both stars have given fans a glimpse into their home on social media, with Jeff looking proud as she showed off his produce at their home allotment.

    Talking about their love of growing fresh produce, Zoe told Fabulous magazine: "We have an allotment and it's so therapeutic to have your hands in the earth.

    "We're mindful of what we eat, but watching our diet isn't about being on TV, it's more about general wellbeing, as Jeff has Crohn's disease.

    "The kids love cooking with us. The other night Violet made a dal from scratch!"

    Natalie J Robb and Jonny McPherson

    Moira Dingle and Dr Liam Cavanagh stars Natalie J Robb and Johnny McPherson began a sweet romance just before the lockdown in 2020.

    When the lockdown was imposed in March of that year, the couple decided to move in together and later confirmed their romance in the summer months, after they were spotted on a Zoom call together.

    It is reported that the pair grew close during a charity trip to Lapland and realised they had a lot in common, with Jonny previously said Natalie is a 'wonderful' girlfriend, and that he has learned so much from her in both a professional and personal way.

    However, one year later, sources confirmed that the couple had split, but neither Natalie or Jonny have publicly commented on their break up.

    Emmerdale airs weeknights on ITV at 7.30pm

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