Inside Emmerdale legend Claire King’s life off screen – from secret illness battle to romance with co-star


Emmerdale viewers have been captivated by the talent of Claire King for an impressive 40 years. The soap actress, now 62, initially rose to fame as a member of the girl pop group To Be Continued. However, it was her acting career that truly took off in 1987 when she appeared in the film Eat the Rich.

From Girl Group to Soap Star

Before her iconic role as Kim Tate in Emmerdale, Claire King made a name for herself in various acting projects. But it was her arrival in the Dales in 1989 that solidified her status as a soap legend. Playing the role for a decade, Claire's portrayal of the conniving character kept viewers hooked as Kim Tate married her way through five husbands.

A Real-life Soap Drama

Claire King's love life mirrored the drama of her Emmerdale character when she began a romance with Peter Amory, who played her on-screen enemy Chris Tate. The couple shocked fans when they tied the knot in 1994. However, the relationship came to an abrupt end after ten years when Peter had an affair—with another woman from Emmerdale, Samantha Giles.

The affair was discovered by Claire, adding another layer of irony as Samantha's character, Bernice Blackstock, also had an affair with a married man in the soap. Despite the heartbreak, Claire managed to find love again and is now co-parenting two teenagers with her new partner.

Health Battles and Family

Claire's journey to motherhood wasn't an easy one. Due to health complications, she was unable to have children of her own. She explained, "My ex didn’t want children as he already had one, and by the time we split up, I was just on the verge of missing that window. But then I started getting ill and had to have a hysterectomy, so I just accepted it wasn’t meant to be for me."

However, Claire found happiness as a stepmother. She welcomed two teenagers into her life and embraced the role wholeheartedly. Claire also revealed that she was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis at the age of 28. Despite the challenges it presents, she continues to work and live her life to the fullest.

A Strong Woman On and Off Screen

Claire's battle with rheumatoid arthritis may not always be visible, but it has a significant impact on her life. She shared, "I struggled to go to work and do the things I love, like horse-riding because of the terrible pressure it put on my knees. I can certainly relate to the 'invisible disease' – although my symptoms don’t always show, it doesn’t mean I’m not in pain or feeling exhausted."

With her talent, resilience, and personal triumphs, Claire King continues to inspire both on and off-screen. Her dedication to her craft and her ability to overcome challenges make her a true legend in the world of entertainment.

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