Updated 5th January 2003



Emmerdale News & Gossip

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BBC Puresoap 17th December 2002

Soap Psychic... in Emmerdale

24 Dec - 06 Jan: it shall come to pass
Tearful farewell.
We're saying farewell to Steve Halliwell, who as Zak, is off to discover Dingle treasure. Lisa'll be gutted (especially as she's left with a Shetland pony to care for!)
Laurel gets her big chance behind the bar. Can she cut it as a barmaid?
Steph and Nicola both end up chasing the same man. (Poor guy!)
And Edna thinks Jarvis is spying on her.
That's a funny looking Shetland Pony!
That's a funny looking Shetland Pony!
© Yorkshire Television 2002

Daily Mirror (Date Unknown)

Kelvin surfs the net.
ACTOR Kelvin Fletcher, 18, has played Andy Sugden in Emmerdale since 1996. In 1999 he won The British Soap Award for Best Dramatic Performance.

Kelvin lives with his parents and brother in Oldham and modestly admits he has a "really great job!" Here Kelvin tells YVONNE SWANN about his passion for online games and car sites.

MUM and Dad bought a really good computer for the whole family. It's an HP Pavilion desk top. It has all the mod cons and is super fast. I use it as much as I can.

When I'm on the internet I like to download MP3 music on to discs, which saves going out and buying CDs. I also listen to local radio stations. It's great for finding holiday flight prices, but I haven't bought anything off the net. I won't risk putting my details in.

Best of all I like playing computer games. We have a game called Championship Manager. It's all about managing a football team. It's not really about winning, but you play with other people from around the world. It's a very good interactive game and it's amazing to be playing it with someone on the other side of the world - in America, say. We log on to the game every night and it lasts ages.

Another game I like is Commandoes - a simple combat game - and that again can be played with other people on the net. My friends all have that one, so when we got the computer I went out and bought it and downloaded it.

I enjoy a browse through the Emmerdale website and having a look at the message boards - just to see what the fans are saying.

You find that if you've been featured in the storylines for a few weeks they start writing about you. It's usually quite nice stuff, but every now and then someone picks a few holes in your acting skills.

People take a real interest in the show and the message boards reflect that. They ask me questions all the time. I'm not really in a position to answer them personally, but the Emmerdale internet team answers the questions for me - not by making up the answers though. They have all the necessary research and are always updating their files on the characters and the actors who play them. Every now and then I get a letter asking me to give answers to frequently asked questions.

I get a lot of funny ones, such as, "What is your favourite colour?" Or, "What gel do you use in your hair?"

I have done a live webchat. I did it with Sammy Winward, who plays my on-screen girlfriend Katie. We spent an hour chatting just after the show went out. It was fun. Someone types your answers to the questions, which were all relative to the show - favourites storylines? Do you all enjoy working together? Who is your favourite actor? And so on.

We now have a computer in the studio Green Room, which is quite fun. Everyone is always surfing on there between takes.

I just like to browse sites that interest me. Car sites are my favourite. I look at the Mercedes site and the Auto Trader site to compare car prices. I like emails, because I can never be bothered to write letters. Emails are quick and short.

I send pictures to my mates, too. I have a scanner, but it's usually just jokey pictures I see on the net, which I forward on.

The Sun 17 December 2002

Jacqui Pirie played Tina Dingle in Emmerdale and jilted him at the alter in the character's most famous storyline
Street nasty Linda's really a model mum

ACTRESS Jacqueline Pirie – Linda Baldwin – has played nasty bitches for years. Off-screen, Jacqui, 28, is a doting mum-of-two. But viewers will not forget either of her soap superbitches in a hurry.

Scots-born Jacqui, pictured right, who lives in Stockport, Greater Manchester, with fireman husband Simon, 32, quit the Street in January. In three years she had shot from a humble machinist to factory boss Mike’s missus. Her early scenes as loutish Linda brought back memories of her own childhood at a Birmingham comprehensive.

Jacqui told The Sun then: “I’d a half-Scots, half-Brummie accent and would have been an easy target for bullies. “ But I went into the school with the attitude that no one was going to mess me about. Fortunately it worked. “ Bullies can only bully you if you let yourself be intimidated.” In Corrie, Linda led a hate campaign against transsexual Hayley.

Jacqui was still a teenager when she got her first soap role, as tough Tina Dingle in Emmerdale. She also appeared in BBC1’s Casualty. Now the accomplished actress is busy playing her most important role as mum to Alexandra, four, and Jamie, one. Her Street character vanished when her car plunged into a canal as she planned to frame Mike for murder. She escaped with his son Mark.

17th December 2002: Jacqueline Pirie accused of threatening to Kill Tracy Shaw

Jacqueline Pirie (who played Tina Dingle in Emmerdale before going on to Coronation Street as Linda Baldwin) has been accused by Corrie's Tracy Shaw of threatening to kill her.

BBC Puresoap 17th December 2002

Star receives death threat

Tracy Shaw has alleged that she received a death threat from a female co-star whilst working on Coronation Street.

Tracy, 29, who plays Maxine Peacock, told The Sun that she clashed with Jacqueline Pirie who plays Mike Baldwin's wife Linda in the soap.

The confrontation came after the publication of a newspaper report.

" I'd just come back from honeymoon and had been told off about something in the papers," she told The Sun.

" Jacqueline had got me into trouble at work and then I was stupid enough to go into a room with her.
" She said, "can I have a word?" I stepped into this room and then she started - it was like being in the hands of the bully at school.

" I was just standing there and she was jabbing her finger into my face."

Tracy told the newspaper that Clare McGlinn, who played Charlie Ramsden in the soap, came in to protect her and she left the room, shaking.

" My next scene was Maxine pointing her finger in Linda's face - I just couldn't do it," she said.

But she added that this was an isolated incident during the seven years that she spent on the Street.

The Sun Online 17th December 2002

I will kill you!


IT is Day Two of the Corrie exclusive they all wanted as Tracy Shaw tells her own story before dramatically bowing out of the Street after seven years playing Maxine.

Today she reveals the secrets of life on and off set – and tells of a terrifying confrontation with another Corrie star. And we bring you more sensational pictures.

SWEARING, raging and pointing a finger in Tracy Shaw’s face, her female co-star issued a chilling death threat.

It could have been a scene straight from a Corrie scriptwriter’s pen — except that the language was far too foul for TV.

The dramatic clash was a real-life bust-up behind the scenes on the nation’s favourite soap.

The vicious attack was dished out by furious Jacqueline Pirie, who played Mike Baldwin’s wife Linda.

She was boiling over about a newspaper report.

Ashen-faced Tracy, 29, who plays Maxine Peacock, was rescued from her torment by actress Clare McGlinn (Charlie Ramsden). Tracy left the room visibly shaking.

She says: “I’d just come back from honeymoon and had been told off about something in the papers.

“Jacqueline had got me into trouble at work and then I was stupid enough to go into a room with her.

“She said, ‘can I have a word?’ I stepped into this room and then she started — it was like being in the hands of the bully at school.

“I was just standing there and she was jabbing her finger into my face and she said, ‘I will f***ing kill you’.

“She was pregnant at the time and I couldn’t do anything.

Then Clare, who was one of my best friends, came in to protect me. I came out and I was shaking. Clare got the floor manager but I just thought, ‘what am I doing? I daren’t go into the Green Room (where the cast relax) now’.

“My next scene was Maxine pointing her finger in Linda’s face — I just couldn’t do it.”

But Tracy’s ordeal — which originated over an article that we cannot repeat for legal reasons — was short-lived because Jacqueline rapidly signed herself off early on maternity leave. She quit in January this year.

Fortunately it was an isolated unpleasant incident during seven years on the Street.

In that time Tracy’s character developed from being man-mad Maxine Heavey to model mum Mrs Peacock — although the hairdresser did once lapse into her old man-eating ways by bedding Dr Matt Ramsden, actor Stephen Beckett.

That sensational romp provided the soap with a bizarre love triangle and the gripping who’s the father mystery before the birth of her screen son Joshua.

The only other sleepless night that Tracy suffered as a result of being in the nation’s longest-running TV soap was not the baby’s birth — it was the eve of her first day in the cast in May 1995. Tracy, who was initially signed up for just eight weeks, says: “It is the same with everyone who goes into that Green Room — you don’t sleep the night before.

“It is scarier than the first day at school — you see all these famous faces that you’ve known for years and you’re awestruck.

“I didn’t know what to say and was worried I’d use the wrong name and address them as their characters when I spoke to them.

“But Angela Griffin, who played hairdresser Fiona Middleton, was excellent.

“Straight away she came bounding up to me and said, ‘you must be Tracy, come and meet Chloe’.

“Angie and Chloe Newsome, who played Alec Gilroy’s granddaughter Vicky, looked after me from then on.”

Tracy adds: “There is another scary moment that everyone in the soap has to face — that’s going into the Rovers for the the first time.

“That was where I got to say my first line, to Phil Middlemiss, who played bookie Des Barnes. I was really scared and in those days Julie Goodyear was behind the bar as Bet and that can be very daunting for any young actress.

“I had to say, ‘Hey, my name’s Maxine, but you can call me Max.’

“Phil was a real sweetie and could see I was nervous and just helped me relax.

Kiss a butchers ... Maxine gets romantic with Ashley
“I looked up to Julie quite a lot too because she was such a strong lady.

“I remember doing my first ever photoshoot and bringing in the pictures. Julie said, ‘Can I have a look?’

“Then she asked me who the make-up artist was and I couldn’t remember. She told me, ‘Don’t you ever forget a good make-up artist’. To this day I’ve remembered what she said and have always taken heed of that advice.”

While Julie was queening it in the Rovers, actor Ken Morley was being crowned King of Soap for his hilarious performances as Randy Reg Holdsworth.

Tracy says: “Ken was great fun and was larger than life — just like the character he played.

“I’ll never forget him patting my bum once — but I told him what I thought and he never did it again.

“But he was very, very funny and I’ll never forget those fantastic waterbed scenes he did with Maureen.

“To this day they remain classic comic moments of the Street.”

One of Tracy’s favourite Street scenes came playing opposite Reg’s supermarket sidekick Curly Watts, actor Kevin Kennedy.

Smiling Tracy says: “It was when Maxine copped off with Curly — they were the most unlikely couple.

“But Racquel was still around and Sarah Lancashire had demonstrated how the most unlikely couples can develop into fantastic partnerships in the Street.

“Kev is great to play against — he is a secret comedian and all through those scenes he was cracking jokes. He is a very affectionate person and has always looked after me.”

When Kevin revealed his alcohol addiction, Tracy and her pals in the cast rallied round with their support.

Tracy says: “Admitting he had the problem was the best thing he had ever done — he was a very brave man.

Romance ... with Phil Middlemiss as Des
“There are lots of people not big enough to do that and I think he deserves every credit for that.

“I wanted Kevin to be better, because I’ve been there and admitted my own problems and know how important that is.”

Tracy’s battle with anorexia made headlines in 1996 after she was photographed looking stick-thin leaving the Coronation Street set.

Tracy, who has fought back from her troubles, says: “I always laugh and say I never deserved being voted Rear Of The Year at the time because I didn’t have a rear at all. At that point I had a relapse into anorexia and had not been cured or even found out why I was anorexic.

“But I had relationship problems and in that situation the only thing I had any control over was my eating, so as I was stressed the anorexia came back.”

The actress used her problem positively, setting up The Tracy Shaw Foundation to help others with eating disorders.

This autumn she wound up the charity and intends to channel all available funds into research into eating disorders.

Tracy’s own amazing comeback from the illness that saw her locked in a mental ward and weighing just 5st has been completed.

And Tracy’s first major role out of the Street — appearing naked in a stage tour of The Blue Room — will give fans an opportunity to see just how well her figure is holding up.

The Sun 16th December 2002

Angie's funeral


Weekdays  ITV

EMMERDALE says some sad farewells as a host of familiar faces decide to leave the village.

It’s a final goodbye to Angie Reynolds as her body is laid to rest. Her son Marc has had enough of Emmerdale and decides to go and live with his father, Sean.

Cynthia, Latisha and baby Kirk go off to Portugal after Jason returns and makes them a surprise offer to start a new life with him.

Danny is one resident who wants to stay put, partly because Ollie decides not to leave the village.

And it looks like Louise may be joining the mass exodus when she realises that she can’t stand her stalking hell any longer. She reluctantly agrees to leave Emmerdale with Ray.

Angie’s funeral is a highly emotional affair. Len’s furious when Angie’s ex-husband Sean fails to attend, insisting that he is too busy preparing for his wedding to Lady Tara.

But Marc defends his dad and says he feels the same way. He just wants to forget all about Emmerdale and start again.
Also lurking in the background at Angie’s funeral is Cain, who makes a confession to Charity.

The Daggerts can hardly believe their ears when Jason makes a surprise return and offers them the chance of a new start in sunny Portugal.

After a clash with Cain, Jason convinces Latisha they’ll be happy there, and Cynthia agrees to go, too.

“The family has had such a tough time in Emmerdale, I don’t think you can blame them for grabbing this offer with both hands,” says Kay Purcell, who plays Cynthia.

“Latisha insists her mother will not cramp her style, but now they’ve got to find out if Danny will come along as well.”

Meanwhile, Louise is dead set against leaving Emmerdale. But after another week of torment, she feels she has no choice.

“It just seems to get worse and worse,” says Emily Symons, who plays the distressed landlady.

“Louise receives a photo of herself taken at close proximity in the post. It’s really creepy, but she tries not to let it bother her.

“She’s rattled when Terry stares at her in The Woolpack and Diane starts to complain that her fear about being stalked is now affecting the business.

“Louise understands, yet she can’t help but be worried when her obituary appears in the local paper!

“Ray pleads with her to leave Emmerdale to get away from the constant anguish, and she really panics when Rodney pays her a call.

“Louise finally realises that she can’t go on like this, and she tells Ray she will leave with him.”

Also this week:

  • Cain breaks into the Reynolds’ house to feel close to Angie.
  • Turner insists he’ll pay back all Steph’s hamper customers. She’s angry that he doesn’t trust her.
  • Laurel plans a surprise Christmas song.
  • Viv joins the choir.
  • Tricia isn’t happy with her Christmas decorations.


This Is Bolton

Losses 'will not stop carnival'

Last posted: Monday 16 December 2002 13:29

ORGANISERS of a major village carnival say the annual event will definitely go ahead next year despite making serious losses this year.

The Adlington carnival committee made a loss of £2,500 at this summer's event.

The wet weather put many people off turning out for the carnival, but changes will hopefully bring a brighter future for the event.

Organiser Colin Prescott said: "The committee are doing a lot of talking and planning at the moment in preparation for next year and I can say there will be a carnival, but it will be very different.

"The weather was against us this year, but we will have to make major changes to the way we put on the event in future."

The committee must raise between £30,000 and £50,000 to put on the carnival each year and the group are in talks to come up with fresh fund-raising ideas. Next year's event is planned for August 15, 16 and 17 at the Jubilee playing fields.

Despite the financial problems, this year the carnival celebrated it's 30th year with the traditional appearances of two celebrities -- Heartbeat's Tricia Penrose and Emmerdale's Christopher Chittell, who plays nasty mayor Eric Pollard. He stepped in at the 11th hour after ex-EastEnders star Craig Fairbrass announced he was unable to attend 24 hours before the event because of filming commitments in Luxembourg.

Mr Prescott is certain the committee can prepare a successful carnival for 2003. He said: "We have a lot more hurdles but we will overcome them."

Money man needed for carnival

Last posted: Monday 16 December 2002 13:29

ADLINGTON Carnival Committee is looking for a new treasurer after Mike Barnard quit the post because of work commitments.

Mr Barnard, who lives in Adlington, has been treasurer of the committee for many years.

Carnival organiser Colin Prescott said: "Mike has done a cracking job. He was immaculate in what he did and kept us on track."

The group is hoping someone will step into the shoes of Mr Barnard to look after the money needed to fund the annual event. Each year between £30,000 and £50,000 is needed to host the carnival, which takes place over three days in August at the Jubilee fields.

The carnival celebrated its 30 year in 2002 with the appearance Heartbeat's Tricia Penrose and Emmerdale's Christopher Chittell. Next year's event is planned for August 15, 16 and 17, and Mr Prescott hopes someone will be in post soon, to help the committee over the coming months.

He said: "We are looking for someone who has time to devote, maybe who is retired or semi-retired."

For more information, contact Colin on 01257 482043.

Soaps by Alison Graham


Louise's stalker seems to be getting worryingly close to his target. This week, Louise receives a picture of herself, taken in the village. Suspicions still centre on Terry, and they grow stronger this week when Donna catches him in the family living room wearing just his underpants. And you thought such a sight was reserved for the second circle of hell...

And it's Angie Reynolds's funeral, an occasion surrounded by bad feeling and recrimination. For a start, her ex-husband Sean refuses to attend, presumably because he's too busy picking bits of fluff out of his lover Lady Tara's brain. And Cain is moping around, looking greasier than ever.

Death is also on the mind of Zak Dingle, who at last goes to see his dying father. This involves Zak explaining to the village idiot, Sam, that death happens to us all. You don't say.

Daily Record - Emmerdale Soap of the Week

14th December 2002

SOAP of the week

EMMERDALE, ITV, Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, 7.00pm

JUST who is Louise's (Emily Symons) stalker? She reckons it's Terry (Billy Hartman), but by the end of the week thinks it could even be Rodney (Patrick Mower).

All sorts of sinister goings-on are really freaking her out.

Gloria (Janice McKenzie) is freaked too - as Pollard (Christopher Chittell) discovers when he visits her at Westminster before her maiden speech. She's hitting the bottle and completely out of her depth. Her husband, of course, finds no satisfaction in this at all. Such a lovely man.

Back in the Dales, Zak's dad dies, and it seems might have left his clan something nice - in Santiago, where there was a big bank job years ago.

Are the Dingles about to head for warmer climes? What a great spin-off that would make, like National Lampoon's Vacation with the Griswalds - only worse.

Upcoming Episode Spoilers

© Yorkshire Television

Printed with kind permission of the Emmerdale Press Office

Week Beginning Sunday 15th December 2002

SUNDAY: Louise’s stalker gets personal with a photo
MONDAY: Pollard confronts Gloria in Parliament
TUESDAY: Zak decides to visit his dying father
THURSDAY: Sam is dreaming of a Dingle windfall
FRIDAY: The stalker drives Louise out of the village

Episode 3331


EMMERDALE at 7.00pm - Extra Episode

Louise’s nightmare continues when she discovers that the stalker is getting more and more personal.

A photograph of her, taken in the village, is delivered to the Woolpack and acts as a stark reminder of just how vulnerable she is.

Ray’s anger reaches fever pitch and, desperate to protect Louise from any further abuse, he insists that they should move abroad to escape the fiend.

Pollard can’t help but feel that his life has stalled since he started playing a distinct second fiddle to Gloria and her political career.

Since heading to London, Gloria’s silence speaks volumes and Pollard grows increasingly annoyed as he is forced to rely on Geoff to update him on her movements.

The final straw comes when he sees his wife being interviewed on TV ahead of delivering her maiden Parliamentary speech. Pollard decides the time has come to travel to London and confront the problem head on.

Terry is settling in at Viv and Bob’s – but as the stalker allegations continue to fly, Donna grows increasingly uncomfortable in his presence.

And even Bob is feeling the strain of having a lodger, as Terry fails to heed his request to wear a few more clothes while the ladies are around.

Ollie and Marc return home from their father’s house to find Angie fast becoming a memory and her belongings packed up. Len informs them that he has left her most personal things out for them to sort through.

As the final plans are made for the funeral, Sean breaks the news that he won’t be attending. It’s more than Ollie can take and she breaks down in front of Danny.

But there is worse to come and Marc reveals that he has decided to leave Emmerdale to live with Sean and Tara, leaving Ollie to decide whether she follows suit.

Meanwhile Turner fears that history may be repeating itself as Steph struggles to deliver the Christmas hampers. With her criminal past in mind, he decides its time for a fatherly chat.

Episode 3332


EMMERDALE at 7pm - One Hour Special

In a bid to resolve his differences with Gloria, Pollard arrives in London and makes a beeline for Westminster.

Within minutes of tracking her down, though, he soon realises that she is way out of her depth. Gloria’s secretaries are calling the shots and it’s obvious that she is in dire need of help in preparing her maiden Parliamentary speech.

And his concern deepens when they take a coffee break and he notices that Gloria’s includes a healthy dose of rum!

But can Pollard get her back on track and steer her away from a disastrous debut in Parliament?

It’s a black day back in Emmerdale as Angie is finally laid to rest. The turnout is large but the gossips have a field day speculating about why Sean has seemingly snubbed the funeral.

Marc is bitter and angry about the death of his mother and vents his fury at her colleagues - blaming the force for her death.

It’s more than he can take and he announces that he needs to escape the village for good and put the painful memories it holds behind him.

Cain is forced to watch the funeral from a distance - unable to share his own grief with anyone for fear of the truth about his involvement with her death being revealed.

Charity provides a shoulder to cry on - but will Cain unburden his guilt on her?

Zak is troubled too, but for very different reasons. He is struggling to deal with the news that his father is dying and Lisa urges him to see him before it is too late.

And a familiar face returns to the village with some surprise news for Latisha that could see her heading for pastures new.

Episode 3333


EMMERDALE at 7.00pm

Still troubled by the thought of his dying father and with Lisa’s words ringing in his ears, Zak finally decides the time has come to face his past and visit him.

But he isn’t prepared for the sight that greets him when he arrives at the hospice. Jed is weak and decrepit - almost beyond recognition.

Upon seeing his son, Jed mumbles about the Dingle inheritance being hidden in South America and insists that Zak should head for Santiago and retrieve the family fortune.

Zak is saddened that his father has been reduced to a frail fantasist and reluctantly returns home.

Latisha and Jason are busying themselves with plans for a new life in Lisbon. He even offers to take the whole Daggert clan with them - knowing that it will make it easier for Latisha to leave.

But Danny is preoccupied by the surprise news that Ollie has decided to follow Marc’s lead and leave Emmerdale.

Cynthia is tempted by the offer, but her attempts to seek advice from Terry fall on deaf ears. He has only one thing on his mind - Louise.

The continued stalking is taking its toll on Louise and Diane becomes concerned that it is pushing her over the edge. She is frustrated by the lack of action by the police and is even terrified in her own pub.

Terry’s presence in the Woolpack doesn’t help and he has a run in with Diane - berating her for accusing him of being the stalker.

No episode on Wednesday

Episode 3334


EMMERDALE at 7.00pm

Lisa is increasingly worried about the Dingle debts spiralling out of control – but Zak’s mind is elsewhere as Shadrach delivers the sad news that their father has passed away.

Having led a fairly simple life, he hasn’t left much behind. But that doesn’t stop Sam dreaming up a wild fantasy of a hidden fortune when he unearths a key to a bank box in Jed’s belongings.

With little to keep her in Emmerdale now that she has split from Cain, Latisha mulls over the chance of a new life in Lisbon. And her mind is made up for her when a brooding Cain picks a fight with Jason.

Cynthia is happy that Latisha has made a sensible decision for once and hopes that having a mother in tow won’t cramp her style.

But unsure where his future lies, Danny has to decide whether to follow his family overseas or go it alone in Emmerdale.

Laurel is bursting with enthusiasm as she recruits able voices for a Christmas choir. But the songs she has in mind are hardly traditional hymns.

Meanwhile Louise is far from full of Christmas cheer, she has just read her own obituary in the local newspaper.

Episode 3335



The shock of reading her own obituary is still fresh in Louise’s mind and Ray feels increasingly unable to protect her any more.

Feeling more vulnerable than ever, she starts to seriously consider the idea of escaping the village for good in a bid to find a safe haven away from the stalker.

But before the idea can take shape, Louise is spooked when Rodney makes a surprise visit to Mill Cottage

Disturbed by his manner, she fleas out of the backdoor and races to the village – realising that he too could be her stalker!

Later that evening she tells Ray she is ready to put this nightmare behind her and leave Emmerdale for good. Ray is massively relieved and starts making plans immediately.

Refusing to let go of his dream of hidden treasure, Sam is ecstatic with what he finds in Jed’s safety deposit box.

Zak is far from convinced, though, when Sam eagerly produces an ancient bank book for an account in Santiago and a newspaper clipping about a daring back raid!

But when Lisa goes wild with rage after getting wind that Zak missed his court date for the TV licence – the idea of a trip to Santiago suddenly seems like a very tempting idea.

Meanwhile the village is awash with colour as Viv and Tricia go head to head in the battle of outrageous Christmas decorations!


BBC Puresoap 11th November 2002: Festive fright for Louise

Festive fright for Louise
Village life in Emmerdale refuses to succumb to the season of goodwill again this Christmas as the village is struck by a tragic death.
Louise, living in fear of her stalker, is looking forward to getting away from it all with Ray as he books her flights to a new life. But the stalker is determined to ruin the festive spirit.
Emily Symons, 33, who plays Louise, told Inside Soap: "Louise is desperate, but that doesn't stop her from giving the silent stalker a piece of her mind when he phones her again."
Prime suspect Terry tries to reason with Louise, but is exiled from the village when his attempts to get her to listen fail.
"Then Louise accepts a lift from a friendly face and suddenly realises that she's in the hands of her stalker," said Emily.
"Terrified, she grabs hold of the steering wheel to try to get control of the car, but it swerves and crashes."
Louise is unhurt and flees to her home, leaving the stalker lying motionless on the ground.
The bloodied figure appears at her door moments later, with fatal results.
"It really is cracking stuff," added Emily. "It will be a shock to everyone when they realise who the stalker is - and it's not over yet, not by a long shot!"

The Sun - Christmas Day Spoilers in Emmerdale

Emmerdale, ITV1 - After weeks of terror, Louise finally unmasks her stalker on Christmas Day. The shocking confrontation comes after Louise has decided to leave the pub and the village to start a new life elsewhere.

She has been driven to distraction by the vicious vendetta of creepy gifts and vile messages. Ray has booked flights for Christmas Day and he tries to reassure Louise that her ordeal is almost over.

But after saying her farewells at The Woolpack, Louise accepts a lift from someone who she considers a friend - and finds herself trapped with her stalker.


Louise stops her stalker - for good

She panics and there is a shocking sequence of events, leading to a desperate fight.

"Louise is terrified," says Emily Symons, who plays her.

"But she is also furious that this person has gone to such hideous lengths to cause her anguish and despair. She is fighting for her life but she is also hitting back in anger.

"Ray is not there so she is forced to struggle alone. It’s a terrible, terrible way to spend Christmas Day and the fight has a tragic end."

Louise is mortified by what she has done. In her shocked state, she realises she could be charged with murder.

"She begins a desperate attempt to cover her tracks," says Emily. "And she gets help from a surprise source."

There is also drama at the Dingles’ as Zak prepares for his trip to South America to search for his father’s lost treasure. He has to disappoint Sam, who thinks he is going along, and he still has to break the news to Lisa.

Naturally, Lisa is shocked when she finds out that Zak really is flying off to Chile to try to find Jed’s money. She is outraged that he is leaving her in the lurch and storms out.

Eventually, she calms down. She realises that if he finds a fortune, it will solve all their problems. Zak heads off, leaving Lisa to break the news to Sam that he is not going.

Ashley and Laurel have trouble rounding up some members of the choir for the procession. But Viv and Tricia are caught when they hide in the pub, only to find that is where Ashley’s decided to hold his practice.

Emmerdale also suffers a power cut on Christmas Day.

But when word spreads that Home Farm still has electricity, the villagers decide to join the Tates for their festive meal. Chris is annoyed but even he can’t turn people away on Christmas Day.

It’s a special Christmas for Paddy and Emily as they have 13-year-old foster child Debbie to complete their family.

Seth gets a shock when he surprises Jarvis and Len dancing together in the village hall. Seth can’t understand what’s going on until Jarvis reveals that he’s a former ballroom dancing champion giving Len a lesson.

Steph and Nicola clash over who is going to get off with Syd’s friend Neil. Steph is angry when Nicola tells her she should stick to older men and easily wins the contest. But Steph spitefully warns footloose Neil that Nicola is searching for a husband.

BBC Puresoap 10th December 2002

Soap Psychic... in Emmerdale
17 Dec - 30 Dec: it shall come to pass
The walking dead?
Louise is shocked to see her obituary in the local paper. She thinks Rodney's her stalker.
She also suspects it could be Terry. But it's neither of them
I also see...
She confronts her stalker as she flees the village with Ray.
Her life's in danger!!!
But she KILLS her tormentor!
(Merry Christmas everybody!)
Meanwhile the village suffers a festive power cut.
And Zak plans his treasure hunting trip.
'The Summer Bay caravan park's burned down!'
'The Summer Bay caravan park's burned down!'
© Yorkshire Television 2002

The Sun Online 8th December 2002


Weekdays ITV

RAY is convinced that Mack is Louise’s mystery stalker and angrily attacks him.

But the onslaught lands Ray in trouble for assault, and Louise feels even more vulnerable when he is arrested.

Following Ray’s release from police custody, Louise receives a ghoulish gift of decapitated dolls’ heads in the post. She ignores Ray’s advice and confronts Mack about the terror campaign. But he denies it and she is inclined to believe him.

"Ray doesn’t know what to think," says Seamus Gubbins, who plays the successful businessman.

"He is used to dealing with problems quickly and squashing anyone who gets in his way.

"He really loves Louise and is frustrated that he can’t solve this stalker problem."

When Ray finds his car vandalised by Mack, he is certain that means Mack is guilty of pestering Louise, too.

Ray wants to call the police and report Mack, but Louise insists they wait until they have more evidence.

She is horrified when Brian tells her that he saw Mack sneaking a woman into Mill Cottage while Ray and Louise were away.

"The next day Ray accuses Mack of stalking Louise and Mack responds with a crude remark," says Seamus.

"Ray just loses it and goes for Mack. But before he can do much damage, he is dragged off by Jack."

Ray feels no regrets about the incident, until the police arrive at Mill Cottage and arrest him for assault, causing actual bodily harm.

He returns next day after being cautioned.

"Ray knows he must stay away from Mack," says Seamus.

"But he is alarmed when Louise says she’ll confront him and warns her not to."

But when Louise receives another creepy present - a package of dolls’ heads - she decides to take action and talks to Mack face to face.

He protests his innocence and Louise can’t decide whether or not he is telling the truth.

"Ray is angry when he finds out that Louise has spoken to Mack," says Seamus.

"He suggests they move abroad to get away from it all once and for all. But Louise insists she is not going to be driven from her home."


THERE'S a hairy situation between Viv and Bob.

She hates her hubby’s moustache, but he seems so pleased with it that she daren’t voice her true feelings.

Meanwhile, Bob is also starting to dislike his recent new growth - but he thinks Viv is taken with it!

"Viv thought it looked quite interesting at first," says Deena Payne, who plays the spiky shopkeeper.

"But she goes off it fast when she develops a red rash on her top lip from kissing him.

"Viv admits to Emily that she can’t tell Bob how much she dislikes his 'tache for fear of offending him."

Bob desperately wants to go back to being clean shaven, but he doesn’t want to upset Viv, who seems to like his facial hair.

He pours out his real feelings on the subject to Diane and Louise in The Woolpack.

"But when Viv comes in and hears them laughing, she thinks they are amused by Bob’s ’tache," says Deena.

"She thinks they are just jealous and tells them he looks gorgeous."

But Steph comes to the rescue as she and Viv come up with the plan for a way out of this tight corner.

Viv snips a bit off in a deliberate mistake, and Bob is forced to get rid of the rest.

"Emily puts her foot in it by saying in front of Bob that Viv must be pleased to see him clean shaven," says Deena.

"Bob and Viv have a big heart-to-heart and they promise to be honest with each other in future.

"This induces a big twinge of guilt in Viv because she is still feeling sorry that she was unfaithful with the limo driver.

"Steph knows about that, too, so Viv’s aware she is piling up the favours she owes Steph."

Also this week:

Edna is horrified when Jarvis moves in next door and the couple clash angrily. But they bury the hatchet briefly to look after Len.
Lisa despairs of Zak’s latest, ludicrous money-making scheme.

Radio Times 8th December 2002

Soaps by Alison Graham


Louise's stalker is getting closer to his target, who's growing increasingly nervous at the attentions of her watcher. Everyone seems to think it's Mack - mainly, it seems, because he smuggled a woman into Ray and Louise's house. We aren't sure why this makes him a predator, particularly when you consider the sexual mores of Emmerdale are akin to those of Pompeii just before the earthquake.

Soap & Flannel thinks the culprit is Terry. Actually, we have no proof, but we don't care. We just think it's Terry.

7th December 2002

Funny Man Light's It UP

By The Huddersfield Daily Examiner

HUNDREDS watched as top comedian Billy Pearce switched on Brighouse's Christmas lights.

Crowds gathered in the town's Thornton Square to see him turn streets into a blaze of colour.

The star took time out from rehearsals at Bradford's Alhambra Theatre where he is to appear in Jack and the Beanstalk with former Emmerdale actress Malandra Burrows.

Brighouse-based singer James Anderson, a friend of Billy Pearce, started the proceedings by entertaining the crowd.

The switch-on was organised by the town's 3Bs business group.


Merle Brown


THE stalker story hots up this week, and Louise is going frantic by Friday. She is convinced that it's Mack.

And when he reveals that he has been bringing women back to her house and sleeping with them in her bed, she freaks out. The fact that any women want to sleep with Mack freaks me out.

There's a shock for Edna when the new resident in the village turns out to be Jarvis - her arch enemy. Cue lots of pensioner style arguments which should be fun.

Christmas looks like leaving the Dingles in even more debt, although their kind niece Charity offers them a loan extension until January. What a lovely, caring girl. Really lives up to her name.

And there's some ridiculous scheme about turning Easter bunnies into snowmen. How bizarre.

The Scotsman

7th December 2002

Old Firm bounty a taste of Paradise for Byrne

Alan Pattullo

IF YOU should find yourself seeking shelter in a bar on the broad and narrow streets of Dublin this afternoon, and a stout young chap with a friendly manner waylays you with talk of having once scored twice for Celtic against Rangers within a matter of weeks, then, pray, hear him out.

Paul Byrne, who will watch today’s Old Firm clash in Slattery’s, his Dublin local, is not putting you on, even if the tale he may then recount, taking in as it will a number of familiar regrets, sounds as hackneyed as the fiddle tunes emanating from a busker in the street outside.

It would, in most circumstances, be prudent to dismiss these warblings as the blather of a Guinness-addled moon-hopper. However, Byrne can truly claim to have been a contender, and in this, his testimonial season, is surely allowed the time to reflect and, perhaps, dream.

"The thought of what I might achieve in this game bloody frightens me" a young Irishman once announced as he landed in Glasgow, flushed with excitement at the journey still before him. He once spoke of being worth £1million though in the end Celtic struggled to offload him for a tenth of that fee, Byrne joining Southend United under the charge of fellow Irishman Ronnie Whelan. This ended when they cancelled his contract, allowing Byrne to return home to Ireland.

"At the end of the day you leave Celtic and the only way is down," says Byrne now, in so cheery a manner that the drama he may hope to invest is lost. Now working for the Football Association of Ireland in Dublin and playing for Kilkenny City, his "umpteenth club", Byrne is happy to pick over the bones of his life in football, particularly when, with 12-year-old son Kurtis being targeted by Liverpool, another Byrne career might soon be starting. "I just tell him to follow what his mam says, not what his dad did," he says, offering a clue to who he blames for the unfulfilled potential you cannot avoid discussing.

He was spurred into leaving Celtic by a casual remark from Tommy Burns, who simply said he could not guarantee Byrne a first-team place. The impetuosity of youth dictated that Byrne simply upped sticks and left, refusing to entertain for a moment thoughts of staying somewhere where he was not wanted.

This wasn’t the first mistake in his young, turbulent life, but it is the one which returns to haunt him most often. "I got it into my head that Tommy did not want me, so I wanted to leave as soon as I could," he says. "At the time I was playing well, and I went down to Southend and scored a few goals there. Birmingham offered £750,000 for me, but the chairman Victor Watson, who is dead now, God rest his soul, rejected it, thinking he could get £1million at the end of the season.

"Birmingham were up near the top of the First Division then, and now they are in the Premiership. God knows what might have happened."

Still, he balances such regret with an acknowledgement that he was perhaps fortunate to play as many times as he did for Celtic, under three different managers.

‘I played under Brady, Macari and Burns, so I must have been doing something right’ - PAUL BYRNE

"I played under Liam Brady, Lou Macari and Tommy Burns, so I must have been doing something right. At the end of the day, in my wildest dreams I never thought I would ever play for Celtic first team when I first left Bangor. So I think the job I did at Celtic was OK.

"I was one of the better players at the time. That’s why people cannot understand why I didn’t go onto better things."

The former Celtic player is now only 30, but already he is eight years away from when his career peaked. Capped by Ireland at every level, Byrne was perhaps one of the most talented players to arrive at Parkhead during an era when qualifying for Europe was an achievement, never mind remaining there after Christmas.

Supporters might recoil in horror at mention of his name, since it requires them to recall a time when the sign welcoming fans to Parkhead read like an inscription stuck above a grave. Byrne, though, supplied some life, at times a little too much. "The sort of character I was at the time, a lot of people did not like it at Celtic. Maybe because I was not one of the boys as such things went against me a bit. I was a bit wild, if you like ...."

He arrived at Parkhead in 1993 carrying considerable baggage, and not just the extra padding observed around his buttocks. He admits to drinking, smoking and gambling away his chance at Oxford, having also failed to make the grade at Arsenal. "I was doing all the things a teenager does," he shrugs. However, not every teenager is a father at 15, as Bryne was, and not every teenager has the brassneck to return home to Ireland with belief in tact having been rejected by Oxford.

A year later he was on the road again, a head full of dreams and with reason to believe that finally his skills were to find reward at a club managed by his hero Liam Brady, with whom, bizarrely, he stayed for the first six months of his stay.

Not many leave Celtic after three years with only a loser’s medal in the Coca-Cola Cup final (against Raith Rovers!) for company. Byrne, though, did at least score one of the penalties later rendered redundant by Paul McStay’s miss, but few will remember this.

They may, however, recall those goals against Rangers, the only two league goals he scored in the entire 1994/5 season. Even Henrik Larsson cannot boast so prodigious a goals per game ratio in Old Firm fixtures, and nor could the Swede hope to better the goal scored by Byrne in the 1-1 draw with Rangers on 4 January 1995, when he turned to sweetly volley home a John Collins cross.

It wasn’t enough to keep Byrne at Celtic, amid doubts about his weight and general fitness.

When he returned to Irish football, there were no shortage of workaday players seeking to take the rise out of him. "You try and do things you did at Parkhead, and they don’t come off," he says. "It frustrates you. All of a sudden, before you realise it, people think you’ve lost it."

It was hard to accept a homecoming so lacking in ticker-tape after having left Bangor Town aged 21, the recipient of both the league’s Young Player and Player of the Year trinkets. He was on stand-by for Jack Charlton’s World Cup squad in 1994. On Thursday night, aged only 30, he was being carried off the park in a game between Kilkenny and Waterford, spending the night in a local hospital.

However, even a damaged ear drum won’t keep Byrne away from Slattery’s today at midday, he promises.

And, he gently chides you as you prepare to leave, he has one more thought for the road, though you suspect the rambling might now have started. "It’s my testimonial on the 12 May, at Dalymount Park. Half the funds raised are going to Our Ladies’ Hospital for Sick Kids. You have to get yourself over here for the craic.

"Celebs are coming from Coronation Street, Emmerdale, Eastenders .... Jack Duckworth is managing one of the teams.

"It’s just something they want to give me after what I have given to the game over 16 years. I’m trying to get Alan McManus and John Higgins involved. Steve Collins the boxer is coming, and his brother Roddy. Maybe I’ll get some Celtic players along

BBC Puresoap 6th December 2002

Did You See... last week in Soap

Nadia Sawalha sounds off from her sofa
29 Nov - 6 Dec the week gone by
Hallo there!

Look who's stalking!

Who's putting the frighteners on Emmerdale's Louise? Never ones to let a total lack of evidence get in their way, the local plod squad have put the blame on Terry. He's got the motive.
He hasn't had a girlfriend since Kajagoogoo were in the charts and working for Chris Tate is bound to drive anyone to the edge of madness. But sending a text message would mean stringing more than three words together and we all know the only sentence he can utter is 'Pint of usual'! But if it isn't him - who is it?
My money's on Laurel. She may make Sam Dingle look like a quantum physicist, but if you ask me she's secretly an evil genius and this is all part of her master plan to get behind that bar.
You wait, it'll be Domestos in Diane's G&T next...


Ray: Right, who's for Twister then?
Ray: Right, who's for Twister then?
© Yorkshire Television 2002


6th December 2002

Prince's trust honours Ulster efforts
A NUMBER of Ulster people have been honoured by the Prince's Trust at a gala occasion in Manchester.

The UK's leading youth charity hosted a special awards ceremony to mark the exceptional achievements of local people and organisations which have been involved with The Trust's Volunteers programme.

The UK Recognition Awards, which were staged at Old Trafford, home of Manchester United, marked the culmination of regional heats held over the autumn.

The national finals attracted over 500 people, including all the regional winners, and celebrities including Gillian Kearney (The Forsythe Saga) and Judi Shekoni (ex-EastEnders).

The event was hosted by soap favourites and Prince's Trust Ambassadors, Terri Dwyer (ex-Hollyoaks) and Steve McGann (ex-Emmerdale).

Local nominees included:

Lynette Doherty (1 from Limavady - Volunteer Achievement Award (Unemployed);

Kevin Doherty from Londonderry, Department of Regional Development - Volunteer Achievement Award (Employed);

Jayne Robinson from Ballymena - Volunteer Achievement Award (New Deal). Haven Team 12 based in Portadown and Lurgan - garden transformation - Outstanding Community Project;

Southern Education and Library Board/Haven Employment and Training - Delivery Partner Excellence;

Declan McAleer from Derry and Patricia McPeake from Ballymena - Team Leader Excellence;

Keith Loney from Portadown - Quality Award;

Northern Ireland Civil Service - Outstanding Contribution.

Tommy Fegan, Prince's Trust Northern Ireland director, said: "More than 3,000 young people have now taken part in The Prince's Trust's Volunteers programme, which gives 16 to 25 year olds the skills and confidence to get through life, into work or training.

"The Recognition Awards celebrate the hard work, dedication, motivation and success of the young people who have benefited from the programme and the inspirational people and organisations which have made an outstanding contribution in delivering real opportunities for these young people."

Actor's big gamble pays off
Express and Star
Dec 5, 2002, 9:20am

A Stafford actor who will be rubbing shoulders with the stars when he takes up his role in this year's Christmas pantomime is proving to be something of a star himself.

Steve Witney is still on cloud nine after taking the biggest gamble of his life by turning professional two years ago.

The 41-year old actor decided it was "now or never" to break into fame after being made redundant from an engineering company after 20 years service.

And he has never looked back after landing good roles in the county town's last two Shakespeare Under the Stars productions and last year's pantomime Cinderella. Steve has also appeared in TV's My Fragile Heart with Sarah Lancashire, Doctors and Cold Feet.

He most recently played Brian Leveson, the prosecution QC, in Ken Dodd in the Dock for Channel 4.

But theatre remains something of a passion for Steve, and he is very excited at the prospect of playing Squire Archer, especially alongside Staffford-born actress Freya Copeland, better known as policewoman Angie in Emmerdale.

" I am looking forward to the pantomime and I always get excited because they are great fun," said Steve, who also operates as a part-time gardener.

" Freya is another local actress and it is going to be a big happy family. It will be really nice to meet, and find out all about her.

" In the last two years I have been lucky. I have spoken to other actors who have been out of work for 12 months. I took a gamble going professional. Having done 20 years in the engineering industry the regular wage packet has gone.

" It can be heartbreaking at auditions because when you get there it is you and another 100 people. If you are not exactly what they are looking for, away you go. You learn to take the knocks."

Steve is also excited about the panto for another reason. He can still enjoy home comforts every night, and will not have to rush home on the train to enjoy his Christmas dinner!

Although Steve has no definite roles lined up after the panto, he will be starring in a production by a Shropshire playwright next autumn and is looking to do some corporate video work.

BBC Puresoap 3rd December 2002

Soap Psychic... in Emmerdale
10 Dec - 23 Dec: it shall come to pass
Bearer of bad news...
Louise gets a rather scary Christmas prezzie.
And Zak's brother Shadrach returns to Emmerdale with some bad news about their dad - he's dying.
Further in the future, I see…
Zak considers leaving the village to go treasure hunting in Chile
Ray convinces Louise to leave Emmerdale.
Marc leaves after his mum's funeral, saying goodbye to Ollie and Len.
And Jason offers the Daggerts a new life with him in Portugal
(Will the last one out please turn off the lights?)
Someone's misunderstood Lou wanting to get ahead!
Lou regrets saying she wanted to get ahead!
The Beeb's early-evening blues
BBC 1's 7pm slot isn't working, and BBC 2 has lost 'The Simpsons'. The corporation is desperate to find some new hits. Keely Winstone asks the channels' controllers how they intend to fill the gaps

03 December 2002

A select group of BBC entertainment executives has been on a week-long brainstorming summit with the aim of creating new shows for key schedule slots. The pressure is on to find BBC 2 a sure-fire replacement for The Simpsons and BBC 1 a weekday regular that can hold its own against ITV1's rampant Emmerdale at 7pm.

The away week has to help the entertainment team to galvanise itself for battle. The important 6pm slot on BBC 2, for example, is also being pitched for by the BBC's factual department and by independent producers. All are workingto create a show that will get the approval of Jane Root, BBC2's controller. BBC 2 lost the rights to its 6pm incumbent, The Simpsons, to Channel 4 earlier this year. In a bidding war between the BBC, Channel 5 and Channel4, the episode price rose to near £1m.

With experiences such as the switch of Have I Got News for You to BBC1 behind her, Root is sanguine about finding a successor to The Simpsons. "When HIGNFY moved to BBC1, everyone was saying, 'Oh my God, what a black day for BBC2.' But it wasn't. We survived; we prospered. And you're always looking to reinvent."

BBC commissioning executives are briefing producers on the lessons of The Simpsons – "It has attitude; it's for kids and adults; it's entertainment and escapism; it resolves within one episode" – but with budgets for stripped shows (shown in the same slot every day) not running to huge sums, many are finding it a tough nut to crack. "They're looking for a cheap Robot Wars or a new way to do Ready Steady Cook," says an independent producer. "It's not easy."

Root says she is still open to ideas, despite having made some progress. "We've got two or three pilots in the works and we're developing projects that look promising. And next month, for a week, we're going to be putting out Treasure Hunt [a remake of the 1980s Anneka Rice show]."

With a potential audience inheritance of 4.5 million from The Weakest Link, Root has high hopes for any new shows that can run five nights a week. "Stripped shows have a lot of potential. Look at some of the things that have started in daytime: we're running Flog It! early on a Saturday evening; The Weakest Link, which started as an incredibly cheap show, went to BBC1 primetime; Bargain Hunt is in primetime..."

There is also the movement of shows between the BBC's two terrestrial stations and its digital channels. Root says that the next series of the US real-time drama 24 will have the same form as before, with BBC2 airing the initial and last episodes first but BBC Choice (to be relaunched as BBC3 in February) going a week ahead in between.

Meanwhile, BBC1 is considering a far more controversial option for the window-sharing with EastEnders. An airing of EastEnders on BBC3 one episode ahead of BBC1 has been mooted for BBC3's launch schedule at least, a move not likely to find much support among terrestrial EastEnders fans or licence- fee payers in general. And with the 7pm slot already seen as something of a problem for BBC1, the supremacy of EastEnders at 7.30/8pm needs to be protected.

BBC1's stab at a lavish reality show, the widely panned Fame Academy, has been building an audience, but its 7pm outing is being trounced by ITV1's Emmerdale. The soap, which has a pronounced skew toward a youth audience, regularly pulls in nine million viewers; BBC1 is getting half that. Fame Academy has also not performed on BBC Choice.

Other 7pm shows aren't performing much better. "No one is very happy with the performance of Holiday 2002," says one BBC insider. The BBC1 controller, Lorraine Heggessey, denies that the latest Holiday is a disappointment and says she is happy with it as a brand. But she admits that there needs to be variety in the types of shows in that slot. With BBC1 looking to fill some key slots within this tax year, so budgets aren't cut for next year, 7pm is another opportunity to brainstorm. Heggessey put out tenders for the slot a month ago, and pitching sessions start before Christmas.

Echoing Root's stance on BBC2's 6pm slot, Heggessey is open to entertainment and factual entertainment series as well as stripped shows. Shows that contrast with current options – for example, the consumer show Watchdog – are most likely to impress. Heggessey hopes to have her new-look 7pm schedule in place by next spring.

Saturday early evening is also vying for her attention. It's traditionally a problem area for both main channels, but BBC1 has been having particular problems recently. A series of disappointments was topped off by the quiz show The Chair, hosted by John McEnroe.

Heggessey admits that Saturday night needs rejuvenating – "It's under review" – and says fresh shows are in development to tackle the problem. She is adamant that she does not want back-to-back entertainment shows. Although she will consider drama and factual programmes, Ian Wright is to be given another stab at Saturday with a pilot family challenge show, I'd Do Anything, from the independent production firm TWI. Heggessey points out that it is not a studio- bound show.

The BBC's new director of television, Jana Bennett, has derided "Saturday nights locked up in purple or pink studios guessing the answers to the same questions" and called for "original thinking".

2nd December 2002

TV trio join nightspot's birthday party

By Arthur Mills

Three top TV soap stars joined hundreds of clubbers to celebrate the second birthday of Telford's Athena nightclub at the weekend.

The trio were on hand to blow out the candles on a specially-made birthday cake at the night spot in Telford's town centre.

Leading the way was current number one bad guy actor Brian Capron - alias serial killer Richard Hillman from Coronation Street.

With him on stage was another visitor from the Street - Maria Sutherland played by attractive Samia Ghadie.

And the star trio was completed by Emmerdale's bad boy Cain Dingle - actor Jeff Hordley - who was a favourite with the girls on Saturday night.

All three stars appeared briefly on stage and stayed on and happily signed autographs and posed for photographs with the revellers.

Club owner Jason Donovan said that bringing three of TV's current top celebrities to the club was to say "thank you" for the support of the clubbers.

An estimated 250,000 people have been through the Athena doors since they opened two years ago

30 November 2002

Soap star switches on lights
CROWDS gathered in Chorley's Market Walk to see Australian soap star Emily Symons turn on the Christmas lights.

The switch was flicked by the actress famous for roles as barmaid Louise in Emmerdale and brassy Marilyn in Home and Away.

About 100 adults and kids turned out to watch the big switch-on, organised by Market Walk bosses. Emily said: "I'm really pleased to be in Chorley. The people are so friendly and I've been treated like a princess.

"I've been around some of the shops and it seems like a great town. It's wonderful so many people have come to see me switch the lights on and everyone's made me feel very welcome."

Malandra Burrows Update

Malandra as Kathy

Along with appearing in Panto in Bradford, Malandra will also be taking part in a Panto Special of the Weakest Link during Christmas!


TERRY (Bill Hartman) is in the frame as being Louise's stalker, but is it him?

Well, everyone seems to think so, except Viv (Deena Payne), who, uncharacteristically, comes over all charitable and gives him a bed when Diane (Elizabeth Estensen) kicks him out of the pub.

Paddy (Dominic Brunt) is trying his hardest with Jacob (Jack Lloyd Davies), his and Emily's (Kate McGregor) first foster child, but it's really not going too well.

Ray (Seamus Gubbins) is still acting in a bolshy manner, and this week is taking it out on Mack (Terry Dixon), who, having been made a fool of again, plots instant revenge.

Elsewhere, Jack (Clive Hornby) thinks Robert (Karl Davies) has stolen a bottle of wine that has gone missing, but it transpires that it's not him at all - it's Victoria (Hannah Midgeley). Oh dear.

30th November 2002

fifth birthday and fundraiser
A north-east radio station will combine its fifth birthday celebrations with a fundraiser for the Archie Foundation.

Memorabilia from the music, sport and TV soap worlds will be up for grabs at an auction at a charity dance organised by Peterhead-based Waves.

A signed photograph of superstar Cher, CDs autographed by singer David Gray and pop act Liberty X, and a signed Scotland shirt will be among the lots going under the hammer at the Blue Toon's Palace Hotel tonight. There will also be some items donated by the cast of ITV's Emmerdale. The station started life in the 80s broadcasting part-time from a shack at Peterhead's Lido. But it won a full-time FM licence from the Radio Authority and has been based at premises at Peterhead's Blackhouse industrial estate since December 6, 1997.

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