Emmerdale star reveals ‘CHERYL COLE’ is set to make a number of appearances...

(Image credit: ITV)

It’s hair-raising news…

It’s the second batch of Emmerdale’s special lockdown episodes next week, kicking off on Monday with a two-hander featuring Mandy Dingle and ‘son’ Vinny, and followed by an instalment on Wednesday focusing on husband and wife duo Jimmy and Nicola King.

But along with actors Lisa Riley, Bradley Johnson, Nick Miles and Nicola Wheeler, there’ll be another star making an appearance…Cheryl Cole!

Before you start getting carried away, though, and wondering who on earth she’ll be playing (a long lost Dingle?), the Cheryl Cole in question is the name of a hair piece used to give a bit of oomph to Mandy Dingle’s barnet.

Lisa Riley as bubbly barmaid Mandy Dingle - proud owner of nine hairpieces

Lisa Riley as bubbly barmaid Mandy Dingle - proud owner of nine hairpieces

Explains Lisa Riley: “For this episode (the Mandy and Vinny two-hander) and going forward, we are going to be doing our own hair and make-up.

“Mandy is renowned for all her fake hair. I have nine named hair pieces, and I think the audience will be seeing ‘Cheryl Cole’ a whole lot, because we need to simplify everything and I can’t put in the others - the Emmerdale make-up artists can’t touch me due to social distancing.”

Which begs the question – what are the other eight called? A pound to a penny there’s an ‘Ariana’ in there. And who knows, perhaps there could be a ‘Kate Middleton’, for when Mandy’s trying to attempt a more upmarket look?

The show has filmed six lockdown episodes in total, all featuring characters in isolation. In the Mandy and Vinny episode, viewers will see the pair shut away in the beauty salon, having earlier moved out of the Dingle homestead due to Sam being worried about wife Lydia’s health.

The pair have a karaoke machine on the premises and a plentiful supply of beers, which will no doubt lead to some drunken warbling. But the episode is set to take a more serious turn when the duo discuss the arrival of Paul Ashdale – Mandy’s ex partner and Vinny’s biological father, who recently pitched up in the village to get to know the son he abandoned as a young child.

Emmerdale Vinny, Paul and Mandy

Paul recently admitted to Vinny that he was his father, and not newcomer 'Alex' as he'd claimed...

Vinny is keen to get in touch with Paul, but Mandy is worried about getting hurt again, and wants him out of their lives. As she talks to Vinny about her and Paul’s past, she ends up revealing a long-held secret.

Adds Lisa: “I absolutely love the story we are telling, as Mandy has a 15 year old secret that is the big ‘bomb’ of the episode. She has been sitting on this for so long, and things will suddenly make so much sense.

“I can’t wait to play this out, and it will have huge repercussions going forward.”


Alison Slade
Soaps Editor
Alison Slade has over 20 years of experience as a TV journalist and has spent the vast majority of that time as Soap Editor of TV Times magazine.  She is passionate about the ability of soaps to change the world by presenting important, issue-based stories about real people in a relatable way. There are few soap actors that she hasn’t interviewed over the years, and her expertise in the genre means she has been called upon as a judge numerous times for The British Soap Awards and the BAFTA TV Awards.

When she is not writing about soaps, watching soaps, or interviewing people who are in soaps, she loves going to the theatre, taking a long walk or pottering about at home, obsessing over Farrow and Ball paint.