EMMERDALE star Charley Webb made a shock comeback to the soap last night – but her kids will never know.
The actress – who has played man-eater Debbie Dingle in the ITV soap for 18 years – doesn’t let her sons see what she gets up to at work.
Charley is married to co-star Matthew Wolfenden and the couple share three sons – Buster, 10, Bowie , four, and Ace, one.
Viewers have watched Debbie take part in the village’s steamiest and most dramatic storylines over the years.
There was an ill-fated affair with scheming step-brother Joe Tate, her twisted romance with serial killer Cameron Murray and her lesbian love trysts with Jenna Coleman’s Jasmine Thomas.
Debbie was also at the centre of the soap’s most controversial storyline when she paid a thug to throw acid at her ex Joe’s face – but it permanently disfigured Ross Barton instead.
Last night millions watched as Debbie was revealed to be Al Chapman’s mystery woman – who he had been cheating on behind fiancee Priya Sharma’s back.
But Charley wasn’t one of them – as she doesn’t want her kids to see her on screen.
Speaking to HOAR about her return, she said: “As the kids are young, I don’t let the kids watch it really so I’ll have to catch up a few days later.
“Bowie’s still a bit young to understand so we never have it on when they’re around.”
Like the rest of the country the family had a low-key Christmas with Charley admitting she was just “enjoying the chaos” with her three boisterous kids.
And add on to that she’s been back filming at Emmerdale for two months and having to keep it a secret from all but her nearest and dearest.
“It’s been hard keeping filming a secret,” she said.
“I only told my close friends and family so there was less chance of it getting out.”
It’s been months of hiding what she knows from everyone so viewers could get their surprise last night.
“I’ve known for a while that this would be part of her return,” she said.
“Jane Hudson our Executive Producer told me when we had a meeting to discuss me coming back.
“I’m really pleased and it’s great we managed to keep it a secret, it’s always nice for the audience to get a surprise.”
And viewers were shocked when Debbie strolled into the scene last night in a slinky mini-dress and revealed herself to be Al’s lover.
Not that it was as glamorous as it looked.
“We shot the hotel scenes in October and it was absolutely freezing,” she laughed.
“It was a bit of a shock to the system.”
But there are more shocks coming – as Debbie doesn’t know she is his mistress.
“Debbie has absolutely no idea at all he has another woman and that it is Priya,” Charley explained.
“She has no idea and he’s convinced her that keeping it a secret will be better because her family hate him and she agrees.”
And she promised that when she does find out the truth – hell hath no fury like a Dingle scorned.
“Debbie will always get her revenge,” she said.
“She’s not one to let things go.”
And it looks like she’s going to recruit his fiancee Priya for her scheme to destroy Al.
“Yeah, it’s going to be a really fun twist I’m sure,” she said.
“You don’t mess with Debbie Dingle so watch out!”