Skip to main content

Ricky Champ - things you didn't know about the EastEnders star

Eastenders - Stuart Highway played by Ricky Champ
(Image credit: BBC / Kieron McCarron)

Here's everything you need to know about Ricky Champ... written by Claire Crick

Actor Ricky Champ has been playing Stuart Highway since joining EastEnders in May 2018.

Over the last two years viewers have watched the character go from being one of Walford’s most terrifying villains to become the loveable, protective big brother of Callum Highway who has a great sense of humour. 

But while Stuart might have a hidden mean streak, you’ll be pleased to know lovely Ricky Champ is nothing like his alter ego…

Most fans of the actor will know that:

  • He has been in The Bill and Casualty
  • He's an Essex boy born and bred
  • He appeared in TV adaptation of David Walliams' Grandpa's Great Escape

Ricky Champ: little known facts about the EastEnders star

 1. He used to be in Game Of Thrones

Before spending his working life on Albert Square, Ricky appeared in huge shows like Plebs and Crims, and is probably best known for his role as Paul Parker in sitcom Him & Her. He also appeared in Game Of Thrones season 6 as Gatins. Younger fans might also recognise him as the prison guard in Paddington 2!

WHAT IS ON TONIGHT? Check out our NEW and improved TV Guide

 2. Ricky Champ’s a big family man

(opens in new tab)

A photo posted by on

While Stuart Highway might not have many friends, Ricky couldn’t be more different - thank goodness! He has been married to his lovely wife Samantha since 2016 and they have a gorgeous daughter together called Beatrix. Ricky can often be found sharing cute photos of them all on Instagram at @rickychamp2

 3. Ricky Champ is best friends with the rest of the EastEnders cast

(opens in new tab)

A photo posted by on

Stuart Highway might often be found causing trouble in Albert Square, but when the cameras stop rolling at EastEnders, Ricky couldn’t get on better with his co-stars if he tried. He recently told us: “I love working with Tony (Clay, who plays Callum Halfway), he’s just great. And I think Danny (Dyer, who plays Mick Carter) is wonderful. I have become very close to all the actors who play the Carters, they’re luminous!”

More: Things you didn't know about EastEnders star Kellie Bright 

 4. He has a really long commute

(opens in new tab)

A photo posted by on

Ricky lives an hour and a half away from the EastEnders studios at Borehamwood, but this means he can spend the travel time getting himself into Stuart’s evil mindset. Ricky recently told us: “I spend my drive getting into the zone, and then on the way home I can do the reverse and leave Stuart Highway on the highway!”

 5. He’s a Shakespeare actor

You wouldn’t know it looking at his portrayal of complex Stuart, but the multi-talented Ricky is well known as a Shakespeare actor. He played Tybalt in Romeo and Juliet at The Globe, and he has also appeared in Midsummer Night’s Dream, Hamlet and Love’s Labour’s Lost to name but a few.

More: Things you didn't know about EastEnders legend Steve McFadden

6. He once badly injured himself filming EastEnders

See more

Now this is dedication for you. Ricky once tweeted to fans that he had fractured a metatarsal in his foot while filming a scene where his alter ego Stuart had to trash his own flat in a fit of rage. Fans were quick to send their get well soon wishes, but all agreed that it was a worthy injury for such a brilliant scene!

 7. He loves chatting to fans on social media

Living in an age of social media means Ricky knows exactly what his fans think of his work as soon as it’s been on TV. He told us: “Most of the time the comments are beautiful and I feel really lucky!”

Ricky Champ's Fact File 

Answers to the most frequently asked questions about the EastEnders actor....

How old is he?

Ricky Champ's age is 39. His date of birth is 1st July 1980.

Is he in a relationship?

Ricky Champ's been married to his wife, Samantha Champ, since 2016.

Does he have kids?

Ricky Champ and wife have a daughter called Beatrix together.

Where was he born?

Ricky Champ was born in Southend-on-sea.

How tall is he?

Ricky Champ's height is 1.86m.


Twitter: @RickyChamp1

Instagram: @rickychamp2

EastEnders airs Monday and Friday at 8pm and Tuesday and Thursday at 7.30pm on BBC One.

We work hard to ensure that all information is correct. Facts that change over time, such as age, will be correct, to the best of our knowledge, at the time of the last article update.

Main image: BBC

David is the What To Watch Editor and has over 20 years of experience in television journalism. He is currently writing about the latest television and film news for What To Watch.

Before working for What To Watch, David spent many years on TV Times magazine, interviewing some of television's most famous stars including Hollywood actor Kiefer Sutherland, singer Lionel Richie and wildlife legend Sir David Attenborough. 

David started out as a writer on TV Times before becoming the title's deputy features editor and then features editor. During his time on TV Times, David also helped run the annual TV Times Awards. David is a huge Death in Paradise fan, although he's still failed to solve a case before the show's detective! He also loves James Bond and controversially thinks that Timothy Dalton was an excellent 007.

Other than watching and writing about telly, David loves playing cricket, going to the cinema, trying to improve his tennis and chasing about after his kids!