Emmerdale star Isabel Hodgins, who has played Victoria Sugden since she was 13, split from her co-star after he left the soap and has ruled out trying to find love on dating apps
Isabel Hodgins’ love life has sometimes been as confusing as that of her Emmerdale character.
At one stage she was married to one Barton brother on-screen and dating another one away from the cameras.
The Emmerdale star was just 12 when she got the role of a lifetime as bosses on the ITV soap wanted an older actress to take over the role of Victoria Sugden.
Having almost given up her dreams of stardom at 11 because she was so homesick at theatre school in London, Isabel believes it was “fate” she got the part .
Speaking in July 2019, she said: “I struggled, I was so homesick so I was going to leave at the end of the year. Then I got the audition for Emmerdale and every northern girl in my year went for it and I got it. It was perfect.”
Now 27-years-old, Isabel has grown up whilst on the soap and had a dramatic romance with one of her former co-stars – Michael Parr.
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The couple got together after meeting on the Yorkshire-based soap when Michael joined the cast as Ross Barton in 2013.
Initially they began dating in secret a couple of years after Michael landed his role and kept their romance relatively low-key.
On-screen, Michael’s character Ross was the half-brother of Adam Barton, who was married to Isabel’s character Victoria.
The Emmerdale stars actually shared a kiss during an episode in 2016 when Ross tried it on with Victoria, but he got a big slap across the face.
They revealed their secret relationship in 2016 after posting pictures from the same places during a romantic trip to Paris.
Michael also posted about his love for her on her 24th birthday, writing in a post: “Happy 24th birthday to this little one. Who woulda thought that 5’2 (and a half) could pack so much love, devotion and attitude.
“Thank you for being the most wonderful and caring best friend a boy could ask for. Love you to the moon and back. X.”
However, their relationship was rocked by rumours of Isabel having a ‘secret fling’ in 2016 with another one of her co-stars – Danny Miller.
According to The Sun, news of the fling apparently caused great tension on set with many of the Emmerdale cast ‘siding with Michael’.
“The revelations caused arguments among the cast who split into two camps over who to support,” a source said at the time.
ITV declined to comment and none of the three parties involved addressed the claims directly.
Isabel and Michael remained together until they split in 2019 after three years together and just months after he left the soap for new opportunities in America.
A source told The Sun : “They drifted apart and felt it was better to be mates. He has been throwing himself into his social life and has just been on a lads’ hol and she is focusing on work, they’re both young and want to follow their dreams.
The insider added: “They had a meaningful relationship and they’ll remember the good times.”
In July 2019, newly single Isabel explained she is an old-fashioned girl at heart and any would-be suitors had better be prepared to put the work in.
The actress confessed you would never catch her on Tinder – although you might spot some of her Emmerdale colleagues.
“I personally wouldn’t go on Tinder – but I know there are people here who are. It is harder to meet someone when you are in the public eye,” she told The Mirror.
“Someone could meet you and then find out later you are on the telly and that might change things.
“If I was to meet someone I wouldn’t even know where to start. It is all too modern for me – I want courtship, love letters. I am an old romantic.”
Isabel admitted she was relishing the single life following her split from Mike and didn’t have time for a relationship with all her commitments.
“I’m enjoying being by myself,” she explained. “But to be fair I haven’t got time for a relationship with work, my dog, going back to Manchester to see my family. I am so busy.
“I feel like being on my own and being single, I am just working out who I am. I am really enjoying it. I am just finding me again because I was a half of a couple and now I am just me and I am liking it.
“If someone did the whole romance thing I might be swayed, but I certainly won’t be swiping!”
Victoria gave birth to baby Harry on New Year’s Day 2020, but it hasn’t made Isabel want to rush to have a baby any time soon.
“It is absolutely not going to make me broody. I never realised how hard it is to bring up a baby,” she confessed. “My sister has two under two, I’m like wow!
“I’m obsessed with my niece Poppy and nephew Lucas, but I’m also happy to hand them back and get back to my flat and chill.”
*Emmerdale airs tonight on ITV at 7pm
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