Emmerdale: Bernice Blackstock finds Leanna Cavanagh

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Samantha has played Bernice Blackstock on Emmerdale intermittently for over 20 years, with the character involved in many storylines centred around her failed romances. Love has never been easy to find for the beloved ITV soap character, with her return in 2021 seeing her trying to reunite with her former lover Liam Cavanagh (played by Jonny McPherson), which failed spectacularly. It seems her relationships off-camera are a lot less dramatic and she is happily married to her husband. Express.co.uk has everything you need to know about the soap star’s other half.

Who is Emmerdale star Samantha Giles married to?

The actress found love with her husband and production manager, Sean Pritchard, who she met 17 years ago in 2005 after she had left the show the first time around.

It wasn’t until 2010 that the couple eventually got married and the ceremony was extremely low-key, with the pair tying the knot in a registry office.

Talking about her wedding day, the actress has previously explained she did not wear a white dress and the vows were exchanged before two witnesses.

This is quite the contrast from her alter-ego, who has always tried to have the most lavish of weddings on the weeknight serial drama.

Since they got together, the couple have also welcomed two daughters into the world, with Eve being 14 years old and their youngest Olivia now being 10 years old.

However, the means by which Samantha met Sean were no accident as the White Witch believes she conjured their meeting with a spell.

Explaining how this all came about, the actress said: “I’d come out of a disastrous relationship and I didn’t want to be messing about with any waste-of-space boyfriends.

“I used Pagan witchcraft and wrote down exactly what I was after and used candles and crystals. It isn’t as bonkers as it sounds.

“I wrote down exactly what I was after and used candles and crystals to do the magic. A few months later exactly what I’d written appeared.

“As if by magic! It’s no different to the book, The Secret. You ritualise and visualise and get what you want in life,” she told The Mirror.

Get what you want in life

Samantha Giles

Though, Samantha believes this isn’t the first time she has met Sean as she thinks the couple met in another life when they were of different genders.

Explaining how this happened, the soap star revealed: “It was weird really because I was this man actually, and I’d gone to work on this fairground.

“And the weird thing is it was before I’d met my husband, but I looked like my husband.

“I had black curly hair and the woman that I was marrying, if you like, looked like me now. So when I met my husband, I had this feeling of meeting him when I saw him, ‘I know you, I’ve met you before.’

“So it was almost as if we’d looked like each other in another life,” she continued to explain on the Wonderbirds YouTube show.

The pair are happily married and with their daughters growing up quickly, they try to spend as much time with them as they can.

Speaking about bringing up her children with her husband Sean, the actress compared herself to her character, who seems to have been distant from her daughter, Gabby Thomas (Rosie Bentham), over the years.

Samantha said: “Bernice is not a great mum to Gabby and Dee Dee. I put my children first. You have to sacrifice things but it’s worth it.

“My daughters both have the performing gene, but they also have a very shy gene. I wouldn’t stop them from going into acting, but it’s really tough.

“You’ve got to have a strong backbone because it can be a really nasty, cut-throat industry. There aren’t many other jobs where you constantly get rejected,” she told The Mirror.

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In fact, when she was pregnant with her second daughter Olivia, there was interest in her returning to the show after 10 years away.

The actress explained: “The producers asked me to come back when I was pregnant and I said, ‘I can’t come back for at least six weeks as I’m having a Caesarean and I won’t be able to drive.’

“They took that literally and wrote me back in for six weeks after the birth.

“You have to do these things – we needed the money and having another baby meant it was going to be harder to get more work.

“I’m not one to look a gift horse in the mouth,” she added before telling The Mirror she always wanted children, no matter how old she was.

The soap star said: “I always wanted to have kids and I would have had more if I’d started younger, but you have to wait to meet the right person.

“Some people don’t want children, and that’s a completely valid life choice. We’re overpopulated as it is, and you have to make a lot of sacrifices when you have children.

‘Sometimes I think to myself, ‘My career might have gone a different way if I hadn’t had kids,’ but this is the path I’ve chosen.

“I watched my friends buying houses and going on holiday, and I was still renting a sh*tty little flat and shopping in Oxfam.

“But when you’re young you have an absurd confidence and feeling of invincibility, so I carried on.”

Emmerdale airs weekdays at 7:30pm on ITV, with an hour-long episode airing on Thursdays.

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