Emmerdale star Michelle Hardwick has admitted that she was "very nervous" ahead of her return to the ITV soap as Vanessa Woodfield.
Michelle, 45, has had 19 months away on maternity leave after welcoming her baby son, Teddy, with wife Kate Brooks.
In upcoming scenes, Vanessa will be making an explosive return to Emmerdale after she left the village in 2020 to go and stay with her mother as part of a heartbreaking bowel cancer storyline.
Talking about her return, soap star Michelle, who plays Vanessa, told publications: "Oh my goodness. After 19 months, it just feels like it’s been forever. Honestly, every time I see people, they’re like, ‘When are you back on Emmerdale?’.
"When I first walked on set it was literally like I'd had two weeks off apart from the Covid restrictions, that’s all very different."
However, Michelle admitted that she was "very nervous" about her return as she worried how she was going to balance motherhood with learning lines.
She said: "I was very nervous though I must admit. You think to yourself, ‘Oh, can I still do it? Can you still learn your lines when you’ve got a little one year old at home?’ but so far so good."
Michelle also admitted that she has missed her character Vanessa, she continued: "Yeah, because she’s been with me for such a long time now – like nine years.
"You do miss them [but] as soon as you get that yellow coat on and your hair in a pony, yeah it was quite easy to hear her voice again when you’re reading the scripts.
"It did surprise me that. I've not used my brain that much over the last year and a half, but I learned the lines – touch wood – quicker than I thought I was going to."
Vanessa's return comes as Nate Robinson's world is "turned upside down" in upcoming scenes as he agrees to set a date for his wedding to Tracy Metcalfe, whose sister is Vanessa.
Only recently, soap fans were left stunned after Nate confessed to sleeping with Fiona, who he met on a drunken night out last month, as she randomly turned up in the village.
At the time, viewers were left shocked over the confession as they quickly predicted a baby twist and speculated whether Fiona could be pregnant with Nate's baby, explaining her suddenly showing up.
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And now new Emmerdale spoilers have teased that Nate and Tracy agree to set a date for their wedding but it's not long until his world is "turned upside down".
Could this be related to Fiona and could Tracy, who thinks nothing has happened, finally discover the truth about her partner?
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