There is no doubt that British TV has produced some truly compelling soap operas that have stood the test of time. Some of the most popular names that come to mind include EastEnders, set in the East End of London, and Coronation Street, a fictional street in Salford, Manchester. However, there are so many other popular soaps that have represented various corners of British life. Emmerdale, which is set in a fictional village in the Yorkshire Dales, is arguably the third most popular soap on British TV.
Lisa Riley – Mandy Dingle
One of the most charismatic people ever the work at The Woolpack is certainly Mandy Dingle who was portrayed by the equally larger-than-life actress Lisa Riley.
Best known for her long-lasting relationship with Paddy, her life was turned upside down when he moved to Ireland. It wouldn’t take long before she moved on and married Butch. However, upon Paddy’s return, the two rekindled their romance and had an affair!
Lisa Riley – Now
For six years, Lisa Riley was the bubbly Mandy Dingle. However, at the turn of the Millenium, she decided to hang up her Emmerdale boots. She was also the presenter of You’ve Been Framed during this time, which came to an end in 2003.
A decade later, Riley took part in Strictly Come Dancing and was instantly loved by the fans. Riley and dancing partner Robin Windsor made a massive impression on the show. She has also been in shows such as Waterloo Road and Wolverton.
Sophie Powles – Holly Barton
On two separate occasions on the show, Sophie Powles played the role of Holly Barton. Originally part of the Barton family, Holly gradually evolved into a character that many considered to help usher in a new generation of viewers.
Holly has been described as unpredictable, and this was made even more extreme by her growing dependence on illicit substances. Despite returning to the show in 2016 after a four-year hiatus, Holly ultimately died in, sadly, the most fitting way for her character – an overdose.
Sophie Powles – Now
During her break between her two stints as Holly, Sophie Powles enjoyed traveling around the world. However, she decided to give a closer look at the UK, traveling around the country after she was permanently killed off. Since then, Powles has worked in stage acting, having recently performed in the play Rehearsal for Murder.
It is believed that Powles was completely aware that her return to Emmerdale wouldn’t last long. One source claimed that she “never saw her return as a long one.”
Jenna Coleman – Jasmine Thomas
Certainly not one of the longest-running roles in the history of Emmerdale. Nevertheless, the role of Jasmine Thomas helped Jenna Coleman establish herself as one of the most talented actresses in British TV right now.
Despite not being from Yorkshire, Jenna Coleman was prepared to relocate to Leeds in order to make her acting career come true with her first role. Although Jasmine’s story started off relatively tame, the last time the viewers see her is in a jail cell.
Jenna Coleman – Now
There is no denying that Jenna Coleman has become something of a superstar since her time on Emmerdale came to an end. The young actress has since landed some notable roles. In 2012, Coleman became the companion of the Eleventh Doctor on the popular Sci-Fi show Doctor Who.
After that, Coleman reached even dizzier new heights when she began portraying a young Queen Victoria in the critically acclaimed period drama Victoria. In 2011, Coleman had a minor role in Captain America: The First Avenger.
Sammy Winward – Katie Sugden
Having been on Emmerdale for nearly 15 years, who could forget Katie Sugden? Sammy Winward played the popular character between 2001 and 2005 before taking maternity leave. However, she returned to the show just a year later.
After being involved in drama with numerous love interests over the years, Winward’s character eventually died at the hands of her ex-lover Robert Sugden, who also happened to be her brother-in-law! Katie made her final appearance on February 9, 2015, in the form of a corpse.
Sammy Winward – Now
It wasn’t long before Sammy Winward would find work elsewhere after her tragic end on Emmerdale. In 2015, the same year that her character Katie was killed off, she joined the cast of the ITV drama Prey. Sammy played the pregnant daughter prison officer David Murdoch.
She was only in season two. However, just two years later, Winward starred in a couple of episodes of the crime miniseries Fearless. Despite having a short-lived relationship with footballer David Dunn, Sammy is the proud mother of daughter Mia.
Verity Rushworth – Donna Windsor
The character of Donna Windsor goes all the way back to 1993, meaning that the character has technically been on Emmerdale in some shape or form, for over 20 years. However, it was the talented Verity Rushworth who was most famous for portraying the character in her second iteration between 1998 and 2014.
At one point, Rushworth had reportedly quit the show in 2008 as she didn’t want to be typecast in future roles. However, she would remain on the show for a further six seasons before being killed off.
Verity Rushworth – Now
It appears that Verity Rushworth has decided to go in a slightly alternative direction in her acting career, trading in her TV roles for some jobs on stage.
In 2015, just a year after her time as Donna came to an end on Emmerdale, the actress took to theater, becoming part of the cast of the play And Then There Were None. She went on tour for a year, playing the character Vera Claythorne. Two years after that, Rushworth played Lauren on the West End show Kinky Boots.
Tom Lister – Carl King
Arguably one of the most berated villains on the show, Carl King was on Emmerdale between 2004 and 2012, and viewers were more than happy to see the back of him by the time everything was said and done.
Carl was one of the “four new single ‘hunks'” that the producers brought onto the show. Some of King’s biggest storylines revolved around his relationship with Lucy Pargeters’s Chas Dingle as well as his failed marriage with Lexi Nicholls.
Tom Lister – Now
In recent times, it seems like Tom Lister has decided to take a break from acting. Instead, he has been doing a lot of work with charities such as Hope For Justice, an organization that seeks to end human trafficking, as well as slavery.
That’s not all though. Lister is also in a band called Edna’s Hat. What makes the band so special is that he performs with former Emmerdale co-stars such as Sian Reese-Williams and Dominic Brunt.
Sheree Murphy – Tricia Stokes
There is no doubt that Sheree Murphy’s character Tricia Stokes is one of the most beloved characters in the history of Emmerdale. Alan Turner’s granddaughter was best known for her bubbly presence, always lighting up customer’s spirits at The Woolpack pub.
Soon enough, Tricia Stokes became a Dingle when she tied the knot with the pub’s trustworthy chef Marlon Dingle. Eventually, after being on the soap for six years, Sheree tragically died after tripping over a collapsed tree.
Sheree Murphy – Now
The reason that Sheree Murphy left Emmerdale was in order to spend more time with her family – specifically, her two kids. Nevertheless, the actress eventually went back in the spotlight, appearing on I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here!
Although she took time off for six years, Murphy finally made the comeback that everyone was waiting for, landing the role of Eva Strong on fellow British soap Hollyoaks. It made sense that she also appeared on Aussie show Neighbours. She relocated down under with footballing husband Harry Kewell.
Sian Reese-Williams – Gennie Walker
Another one of the more recent stars of Emmerdale, Sian Reese-Willaims was a main fixture of the village between 2008 and 2013 as Gennie Walker. It was revealed that her biological father was actually Shadrach Dingle.
One thing is for sure though; Gennie has been in a bunch of relationships during her time on the soap. She has been romantically involved with both Jamie Hope and was married to Nikhil Sharma. However, it was villain Cameron who killed her in a car crash.
Sian Reese-Williams – Now
After her time on Emmerdale came to a tragic end, Reese-Williams went back to her roots and took to the stage, starring in the play Children of Fate. Other shows that she was involved with include Lungs and Alan Bennett’s Enjoy.
However, this hasn’t stopped the actress from maintaining a reputation on TV. She has also starred on shows such as Hinterland, portraying the character Manon, as well as the award-winning show 25 Diwrnod. She eventually joined the cast of the Netflix show Requiem.
Peter Amory – Chis Tate
There was no denying that Chris Tate, the heir to father Frank’s family throne, was a great protagonist. However, after suffering a plane crash, the character completely changed and became berated by the fans.
In real life, he was married to Claire King, who played his Stepmother in the show. They were happily married for 10 years, but decided to seperate after 10 years. They remain friends to this day though.
Peter Amory – Now
Certainly, one of the longer serving actors on Emmerdale, Peter Amory’s time on the soap eventually came to an end in 2003. His character, Chris Tate, did the most extreme thing in order to frame the character Charity – he killed himself!
Despite his epic departure from the show, Amory has been hellbent on keeping a relatively low profile. However, he did marry Claire King, who actually played Kim Tate, his on-screen stepmother. After 10 years of marriage, the couple split up and Amory has since been in other relationships.
Adele Silva – Kelly Glover
Just a year after Adele Silva joined the cast of Emmerdale as Kelly Glover, her character would be changing her name to Kelly Windsor. Her first run on the show went for seven years, which included a variety of crazy storylines.
During this time, Kelly had a miscarriage, an affair with a teacher, and even had an affair with her own stepbrother! Eventually, she became a very unpopular character with the Emmerdale locals and left the village to start a new life in London.
Adele Silva – Now
Although her main run on Emmerdale came to an end in at the turn of the Millenium, Silva returned to the soap five years later for a brief period. However, there is so much more to Silva’s career than just her role as Kelly.
She has also appeared in shows such as The Bill, Doctor Who, and Eastenders. Her time in soaps didn’t stop there either. In 2015, she landed the role of Angele Brown in fellow soap Hollyoaks. Unfortunately, Silva’s attempt to crossover into Hollywood didn’t pay off.
Natalie Anderson – Alicia Gallagher
One of the more contemporary characters on Emmerdale, Natalie Anderson joined the cast in 2010, landing the role of Alicia Gallagher. Leyla Harding’s estranged sister was considered by most to be fairly unsavory despite trying to present herself as classy and glamorous.
As soon as Alicia arrived in the village with her husband and son, you could tell that things weren’t going to go well between her and Leyla. Amazingly, it turns out that Leyla was actually the real mother of Alicia’s son.
Natalie Anderson – Now
Natalie Anderson was already a fairly big name before joining the cast of Emmerdale in 2010. Two years beforehand, she had left her role as Stella Davenport in medical drama The Royal. Between her two roles, Anderson worked in the theater production of Wicked.
Since her time in the Yorkshire Dales came to an end, Anderson has worked on shows such as This Morning and Loose Women. In 2008, the actress also proved that she is a talented musician, releasing her album Return to Me.
Emily Symons – Louise Appleton
At the turn of the Millenium, Emily Symons joined the cast of Emmerdale, playing the friendly barmaid Louise Appleton. However, it wouldn’t take long before she and her best friend Diane Sudgen became co-owners of The Woolpack.
What separated Louise from the other women in the village was that she was Australian, which gave her an exotic aura that attracted many men to her. Things got pretty messy though when Louise fell in love with Diane’s ex-husband Rodney.
Emily Symons – Now
Emily Symons was already an established actress, ever since making her 1988 debut on Richmond Hill. The Aussie actress made a name for herself on the soap Home and Away as the classic character Marilyn Chambers-Fisher.
Despite staying on the show for about a decade, Symons decided to move on. So she chose to come to the Yorkshire Dales. It seems like Symons’ career came full circle when her time on Emmerdale came to an end in 2008 and she returned to Home and Away.
Stephen McGann – Sean Reynolds
Another family that made a big splash on Emmerdale were the Reynolds family. It was Sean Reynolds who was at the center of a lot of their storylines. Stephen McGann landed the role in 1999 and instantly became Chris Tate’s biggest rival.
Unfortunately, Sean got into an affair with Tara Thornfield soon after coming to the village with his family. A few years later, the couple decided to pack their bags a drive off to Chester to start afresh.
Stephen McGann – Now
Unsurprisingly, Stephen McGann never ended up reprising his role as Sean Reynolds. Shortly after leaving Emmerdale, the actor took to the stage, starring in the West End production Art. This was soon followed by a role in Footloose as Reverend Shaw.
In recent times, McGann has worked on BBC’s Call the Midwife, playing the character Dr. Turner. Outside of acting, McGann is passionate about science and has written a lot of books. Most recently, Flesh and Blood: A History of My Family in Seven Maladies.
Sheila Mercier – Annie Sugden
One character who was a part of Emmerdale from the very start was Annie Sugden, who was played by Sheila Mercier between 1972 and 1994. For 22 years, Mercier’s Annie was regarded as the show’s first matriarch and was often the pivotal character of one of Emmerdale‘s most vocal families, the Sugdens.
It seems like the death of husband Jacob was the catalyst that saw Annie take charge and helped build bridges between sons Joe and Jack. She also lost her daughter Peggy.
Sheila Mercier – Now
Officially the longest-serving character in the history of Emmerdale, Sheila Mercier has managed to maintain her reputation as a popular actress since leaving the show in 1994. Amazingly, Sheila was one of only two characters from the first episode to feature in Emmerdale‘s 20th-anniversary episode.
The other was Frazer Hines. Mercier had an eventful life even before her role as Annie, having served in World War II in the Royal Air Force, while also having a successful career in theater.
Andy Devine – Shadrach Dingle
One of the standout members of the Dingle family, Shadrach Dingle was played masterfully by Andy Devine. Between 1998 and 2010, the actor was on the show on and off before eventually being killed off. It made sense, seeing that Devine was set on retiring.
Shadrach’s personal life was extremely rocky, especially since he suffered from liver disease, while also having a complicated family. In 2010, Devine made his last appearance on Emmerdale, drowning in a river while trying to pull back some beer cans.
Andy Devine – Now
Andy Devine hasn’t let his emotional departure from Emmerdale dissuade him from having other roles. He has also appeared on shows such as Doctors and Monroe, which is ironic seeing that the actor left Emmerdale to retire.
However, he did reprise his role as Shadrach in The Big Quiz: Coronation Street v Emmerdale. This was funny, seeing that Devine also made a cameo in Corrie back in 1995. Before retirement, Devine had been in the acting industry for nearly half a century.
Paul Loughran – Butch Dingle
Best remembered as the only ginger in the village, Paul Loughran’s Butch Dingle was known for being the giant softy of the complicated Dingle family. What warmed viewers to Butch was his tendency to not be the brightest character on the show.
His naivety got him into plenty of funny situations. Butch’s first appearance on Emmerdale came when he was convinced that Luke McAllister was behind the death of his brother and stood up to him in the process.
Paul Loughran – Now
In real life, Paul Loughran is very different to Butch Dingle. Although he got killed off in 2000 in a bus crash, Loughran has maintained a reputation for being a soap regular.
Other soaps that the actor has starred in include Heartbeat, The Bill, and Blue Murder, to name a few. Then, Loughran’s biggest soap role came in 2016, when he ended up on Coronation Street as Darryl Perkins. That wasn’t all though. Loughran joined the medical soap Casualty a year later!
Richard Thorp – Alan Turner
Without a doubt, Richard Thorp was one of the longest-serving cast members in the history of Emmerdale. He played the iconic role of Alan Turner for over three decades! Back in 1982 was when Turner arrived at the village.
Just three years into his stay on the show, the character split up with wife Jill. Nevertheless, Alan remained an integral character and an important figure on the council. Despite having many vices, such as women and alcohol, Alan eventually became a much more grounded person with age.
Richard Thorp – Now
Richard Thorp was already well-respected actor before joining Emmerdale. The performer had already been in movies such as The Dam Busters and The Barretts of Wimpole Street. Thorp remained a popular character in Emmerdale for the rest of his days.
Technically, he never “left” the show, after dying in May 2013. He had been dealing with a variety of health issues for a few years. As a result, the showrunners wrote his death into the show, with Alan dying in his sleep in an hour-long special.
Norman Bowler – Frank Tate
Out of all the families in Emmerdale, the one that has probably made the most noise over the years is the Tate family. The patriarch, Frank Tate, was always at the center of storylines that involved him and wife Kim, who he had a turbulent relationship with.
Norman Bowler played the character for over eight years and was on and off with Kim up until his famous 1997 death. Amazingly, their love was the result of an affair that happened while Frank’s ex-wife had cancer.
Norman Bowler – Now
Frank’s departure from Emmerdale was the result of Bowler’s desire to leave the soap in 1997. However, the actor had already established himself as a seasoned soap star, having starred in similar shows such as Harpers West One and Crossroads, both of which he was a part of during the 80s.
In the former, Bowler played the character Roger Pike. He is much more charitable in real life, dedicating most of his time to helping others with his wife. The couple moved to India for a few years.
Stan Richards – Seth Armstrong
First joining Emmerdale back in 1978, Stan Richards is best known for portraying Archibald Seth Armstrong. He became so popular that he swiftly joined the main cast.
Soon enough though, Seth was part of many compelling storylines such as getting over his wife’s death as well as his topsy-turvy relationship with Beggy Eagleton. He also had a part to play in Jackie Merrick’s death, while his friendship with Frank Tate’s wife Kim was also heavily touched upon.
Stan Richards – Now
After Seth died while flying over Leeds in 2005, Stan Richards hasn’t done too much with his career. His time before Emmerdale seemed to be more eventful, having starred as Arthur Stokes in Coronation Street.
When he got the role as Seth, he was only supposed to be in Emmerdale for a month, but things changed after his popularity shot through the roof. Not only is he one of the most iconic characters in the show’s history, but Seth was also the fourth longest-serving character.
Paula Tilbrook – Betty Eagleton
Another performer who was in Emmerdale for a long period of time was Paula Tilbrook, who played Elizabeth Eagleton. She played the character otherwise known as Betty for over 21 years, from 1994 to 2015. Many fans felt so sorry for Betty when she waited for her lover Seth to come back from Australia.
However, after he died in a plane crash, she was absolutely distraught. She may have suffered a huge loss, but Betty also renewed another romantic spark when past-lover Reggie joined the show.
Paula Tilbrook – Now
As Paula Tilbrook was already an experienced actress when she landed the role of Betty on Emmerdale, it made sense that it may have been one of her final roles.
In 2015, she came to the end of her run as Betty, “going back to Australia.” However, Tilbrook has appeared in many other shows in her career. She played the character Vivian Barford in Tales of the Unexpected and was also Mrs. Tattersall in the hilarious Open All Hours.
Andrew Burt – Jack Sugden
There are some characters in Emmerdale that have actually been played by more than one actor/actress. Take Jack Sugden, for example, who was originally played by Andrew Burt in the 70s before Clive Hornby took on the role.
Jack first arrived in the village to attend his father’s funeral and swiftly inherited his farm. This ended up causing friction between him and his family, who were bitter towards him for being away for so long. However, his mother was the most forgiving.
Andrew Burt – Now
Although the original actor to play Jack Sugden had a brief spell on Emmerdale and was eventually replaced by Clive Hornby, Andrew Burt had plenty of other opportunities in acting.
He starred in the BBC show The Legend of King Arthur, while also making an appearance in the 1977 movie The Black Panther, starring as Lesley Whittle’s brother. Burt now lives in West London and instead of acting, has turned to social work, helping people who are suffering from stress.
Jo Kendall – Peggy Skilbeck
Back in 1972, when Emmerdale first aired on British TV, it was Jo Kendall’s character Peggy Skilbeck who said the first line of the entire show, “Matt, who’s she?” She had married the aforementioned Matt off-screen, a few years before the start of the show.
Just a year after it started, she had twins, Sam and Sally. Unfortunately, Kendall’s character didn’t last so long and Peggy ended up dying from a brain hemorrhage at a young age.
Jo Kendall – Now
Despite Jo Kendall’s role in Emmerdale coming to an abrupt end, she has had plenty of other acting roles since then. Not only did she star as Annie in Howard’s End, but she also had a role in The Pallisers as Adelaide Palliser.
In 1993, Kendall performed in The Remains of the Day as a publican’s wife. The actress also had a notable role on Grange Hill, while also starring in an adaptation of the novel The Cuckoo Sister. She played the character, Miss Elizabeth Wait.
Ronald Magill – Amos Brearly
Certainly one of the most iconic characters on Emmerdale, Amos Brearly was also one of the longest-serving characters, portrayed by Ronald Magill for a staggering 23 years!
Most of that time was spent as the landlord of The Woolpack, the social hub of Emmerdale. One of Brearly’s most memorable moments was when he was held up by burglars while closing his pub one evening. Eventually, it was Alan Turner who took over the reigns of The Woolpack when Amos retired in 1991.
Ronald Magill – Now
Although his main run as Amos came to an end in 1991, Ronald Magill reprised his iconic role sporadically over the next few years. Magill was already a recognizable face after starring in stage productions such as Death of a Salesman, The Browning Version, and The Ruling Class, to name a few.
Before his Emmerdale days, the actor appeared in TV shows such as Parkin’s Patch and Special Branch. Sadly, Magill passed away in 2007 after suffering from Bell’s palsy.
Arthur Pentelow – Henry Wilks
One of Amos Brearly’s most trusted companions was the man himself – Henry Wilks. Arthur Pentelow brought much experience to the character and was seen by most fans as a source of comic relief in a show that was sometimes pretty dark!
Although Amos eventually traded the village for sunny Spain, Henry remained at The Woolpack pulling pints. However, Amos’s successor Alan just wasn’t the same. Henry is the sixteenth longest-running character on Emmerdale, having been on the show for nearly two decades!
Arthur Pentelow – Now
After Amos left The Woolpack in 1991, leaving Henry behind, things just weren’t the same for Arthur Pentelow. The character became infuriated with Alan’s ways and it wouldn’t take long before Henry died of a heart attack.
However, this was because Pentelow actually died from a heart attack in real life, prompting the showrunners to write him out of Emmerdale accordingly. Despite his life and time on Emmerdale ended simultaneously, Pentelow had roles in other shows such as Emergency – Ward 10, Z-Cars and Hadleigh.
Toke Townley – Sam Pearson
Another character to appear on Emmerdale‘s very first episode was Sam Pearson, who was played by the highly seasoned actor Toke Townley. If Annie Sugden was the original matriarch of the show, then father Sam is without a doubt the original patriarch.
The grandfather of Peggy, Jack and Joe was in the show for over a decade, before finally passing peacefully in his sleep in 1984. Despite being a grumpy old man, Sam was beloved by cast-members and fans alike.
Toke Townley – Now
Toke Townley is one of the Emmerdale cast members who died the earliest. In 1984, the actor passed away from a heart attack two months before his character did. In the 12 years that Toke was on the show, he starred in a staggering 800 episodes.
Townley was already a well-established actor before landing the role of Sam, having starred in about 30 movies. These included the likes of Doctor at Sea, Lady Godiva Rides Again, Carry on Admiral, Scars of Dracula, and Admirable Crichton, to name a few.
Dominic Power – Cameron Murray
What is a soap opera without its fair share of villains? Emmerdale has not disappointed on that front, having some great bad guys over the years. One of those was Cameron Murray, who was masterly portrayed by Dominic Power after joining the soap in 2011.
In just two years, Cameron ended up killing characters such as Gennie Sharma, Carl King, and Alex Moss. However, fate turned its ugly head when he got electrocuted to death in the pub cellar.
Dominic Power – Now
Before landing his breakthrough role as Cameron, which he won “Best Bad Boy” award at the 2013 Inside Soap Awards, Dominic Power was originally in The Bill. He was in the police drama until its end in 2010.
However, Power has had plenty of work since his electrifying climax in Emmerdale, having starred in Channel 5’s Suspects as a paranoid schizophrenic. In 2015, Power returned to ITV when he landed a role in the drama Unforgotten. There is no denying that Power is in high demand.
Anna Brecon – Then
Anna Brecon is well-known for her role as Tara Reynolds on the series but has a pretty impressive list of credits under her belt so far. On the show, her character of Tara was known for being the troublemaker in the town and for her engagement to Lord Alex Oakwell.
However, she was oblivious to his affair with Kim Tate and was heartbroken when he fled the country, returning only to rob her! Thankfully in real life, Anna seems to be a much more responsible person!
Anna Brecon – Now
Having played the role of Tara Reynolds for 10 years on the show, Anna had no desire to stop acting once her part on the show came to an end. Having built up a lot of momentum on the show, she made her foray into feature films.
Films like Stalker and Vendetta showcased her drive a character home on the big screen as well – solidifying her as a truly talented actress. In more recent years, she has portrayed the character of Alison Jacobs on Doctors.
Amanda Donohue – Then
Amanda Donohue is a well-known actress in the UK and has had some pretty impressive roles over the course of her career. She really made a name for herself on L.A. Law and even won herself a Golden Globe Award for her role as Best Supporting Actress on the series.
So when fans heard that she was joining the cast of Emmerdale, they were hugely excited. She played the role of Natasha, a woman driven to murder her husband after his false life became apparent.
Amanda Donohue – Now
While many agree that Amanda’s performance on Emmerdale was brilliant the truth is that the star quickly got fed up with the role. After only a year of appearing on the sitcom, she decided to quit.
This was a disappointment to fans of the show, but Amanda says it was for the best. Since then, she has gone on to appear in a film called Blue Iguana as well as shows like Pramface and Toast of London.
Leah Bracknell – Zoe Tate
The daughter of Frank Tate, Zoe was also the sister of Chris. Leah Bracknell gave a fantastic performance as the character. Zoe was part of many compelling storylines, including an LGBT plot point that caused friction between Zoe and her dad.
The character was also diagnosed as schizophrenic at one point. There is no doubt that Zoe went through her fair share of loss, with many family members leaving her grasp throughout the show. She also got pregnant without knowing how.
Leah Bracknell – Now
Leah Bracknell’s considerable acclaim for her role as Zoe culminated in 2006 with a British Soap Award for “Best Exit.” The actress was on Emmerdale from 1989 to 2005 and was also nominated for the 2002 National Television Award for Most Popular Actress.
Since then, she has been a part of The Royal Today. Outside of acting, Bracknell also practices yoga, having qualified as a teacher of the Eastern practice. That’s not all though. The actress also has her own jewelry line.
Frazer Hines – Joe Sugden
Joe Sugden didn’t know how to react when his wife left him. Her sudden departure from his life was simply because she didn’t want to live the farmer’s life. Frazer Hines portrayed Joe, who was also one of the original characters on the show.
The son of Annie Sugden eventually moved on, getting married once again. In fact, he has been in plenty of relationships during his time on Emmerdale. Even after leaving in 1983, Joe eventually returned three years later.
Frazer Hines – Now
Although he left Emmerdale in 1994, many still remembered Frazer Hines for his role as Joe Sugden. In fact, Hines was already well-established since starring as Jamie McCrimmon in the sci-fi series Doctor Who.
Despite originally starting as a cameo, Hines’ character was extremely popular and became a regular character during the later 60s. As well as TV, Hines has done a lot of work in theater. One of his most recent stage roles came in 2014 when he starred in the musical Annie as Daddy Warbucks.
Deena Payne – Viv Hope
Another actress who has been in Emmerdale for a long time is Deena Payne, who played the busy lady Viv Hope. She was on the show for a staggering 18 years and during that time, her name changed a lot!
In 2011, her character met her tragic end when she died in an explosion. Amazingly, the only reason that Viv went to prison in 2007 for three years for fraud crimes was that Payne wanted to have a break.
Deena Payne – Now
Like her character on the show, Deena Payne wanted to leave the show on her own terms, with Viv dying in her sleep after an explosion. However, the producers also had enough of her character, despite having her on Emmerdale for a long time.
Although she may not have got the send-off she wanted, Deena Payne has gone on to star in shows such as True Crime. She has also had a fruitful career on stage, starring in the production Calendar Girls.
Kate McGregor – Emily Kirk
For a character who was often so quiet and shy, Kate McGregor’s character Emily Kirk had quite the complicated love life on Emmerdale! At first, you wouldn’t expect Emily to be one to seek a relationship.
Nevertheless, it always seemed like she had some guy in her life. Although she reprised her role briefly in 2008, McGregor’s main run on the show was between 1999 and 2007. After starting a job at the post office, Emily truly came out of her shell.
Kate McGregor – Now
Despite making a huge impression during her time in Emmerdale, Kate McGregor has not done that much since leaving the soap for good in 2008.
She will always be best remembered for her role as the timid character, and that is mainly because she hasn’t really starred in anything else. In fact, her character Emily had a much more interesting epilogue, leaving the village and relocating to Manchester. She also traded in post office duties for a job as a Vicar!