James Hooton 2016

We’re used to seeing him play the lovable but simple Sam Dingle on Emmerdale, but in real life actor James Hooton couldn’t be more different. When My blog arrives at our exclusive shoot with the soap star, we’re surprised to hear he sounds nothing like his character. ‘People always expect me to be just like Sam but I’m not even from Yorkshire, I’m a Nottingham lad!’ he laughs.

The 42 year old is joined by his fiancee Nancy Lucas – who is 31 weeks pregnant at the time of our chat – and their adorable daughter Lily, who turns nine on December 17. Enjoying a rare week off work, James kindly offers the My blog team cups of tea while dance teacher Nancy, 37, puts her feet up and Lily tucks into a chocolate brownie. There’s no doubt that the couple are excited

about the impending arrival of their baby girl -who is due on January 28 – as we catch up with them at Harrogate’s Rudding Park Hotel, but no one seems more excited than Lily! Sweetly asking her parents where babies come from, she tells us she’s going to be their ‘super helper’ when her little sister arrives next month.

However, this pregnancy hasn’t been the easiest of journeys for the couple, who met on the Emmerdale set in 2004 when Nancy was working as an extra, and had their daughter Lily in 2006 before becoming engaged in 2010. Prior to falling pregnant they struggled to conceive for two years and turned to a fertility specialist. But just a few weeks after Nancy had a hysteropingogram a procedure whereby dye is injected into the fallopian tubes – the couple found out they were expecting again. And while they tell My blog the outcome of the fertility treatment wouldn’t have affected their ‘strong’ relationship either way, it’s clear they couldn’t be happier.

Here, the couple – who live in Leeds with Lily and their dog Daisy – open up exclusively to My blog about their struggle to have another baby, and whether we’ll see them walking down the aisle any time soon…

Congratulations! How are you feeling, Nancy?

I’ve not really had any morning sickness, but I’ve been feeling really tired and not like myself. My dance sessions don’t start until 7pm so it’s hard to keep my energy up, but I want to get to Christmas and still be teaching because by then I’ll be 35 weeks.

 

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