Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Emmerdale role is Eden Taylor-Draper’s idea of paradise

Eden Taylor-Draper (Anthony Harvey/Getty Images)
Eden Taylor-Draper (Anthony Harvey/Getty Images)

At the age of just 18, Eden Taylor-Draper has already spent more than a DECADE as one of the most familiar faces on Emmerdale.

Now as her character, Belle Dingle, is at the heart of more Dales drama, Eden told iN10 how the ITV show has shaped her life.

“I was six, just about turn seven when I started here,” says Eden after another morning’s filming at the Leeds studios.

“Looking back, it’s really helped me grow up. I’ve been around so many incredible, talented people and I’m really thankful for that.

“It must be rare for a child to have had that experience. This has become like a home to me. I look on Steve Halliwell and Jane Cox, who play Zak and Lisa Dingle, like my mum and dad.

“I’ve not struggled, if anything it’s helped me, as there’s always been someone to turn to.”

Eden has grown up on Emmerdale, first appearing as Belle Dingle when she was just six years old in 2005 (Yui Mok/PA Wire)
Eden has grown up on Emmerdale, first appearing as Belle Dingle when she was just six years old in 2005 (Yui Mok/PA Wire)

When Eden first joined the legendary Dingle clan, she admits she couldn’t have imagined it would be something she’d still be doing as she neared the end of her teens.

“I didn’t even think of it as a job. I just thought I’d come here, meet some nice people, say some words and go home.

“I hadn’t really acted beforehand so I didn’t have the pressure of coming in feeling that’s what I wanted to do.

“It was only when I was 13 I started to think this could be a career.

“When you get really big storylines and you know you’re being trusted with them you feel, ‘Why would I want to be anywhere else?’

“You realise that what used to be just fun and games could be your life forever.

“And I’m enjoying it every bit as much now as that first day.”

What has changed, since she turned 18, is being treated as an adult, not as a child, by the rest of the cast and crew.

It is, she acknowledges, a welcome change, although there have been adjustments to make.

Her eye-catching performances have seen her pick up major honours, including the British Soap Awards.

Like any soap star, red carpet events are part of the landscape and she’s now stepping out on her own.

“I was more comfortable when I was younger,” she concedes.

“Now at my age there is a pressure to get the right look, the right outfit and to behave in a certain way.

“It used to be just like going to a party and I’d have my parents but I’m not chaperoned now.

“It’s different, but it’s good to be in that position and to learn from it.”

Eden in Emmerdale (ITV)
Eden in Emmerdale (ITV)

What Eden has also been learning about is growing up on screen, with Belle embarking on a relationship with married doctor Jermaine Bailey, played by Micah Balfour.

“He assumes she’s 22 or 23 and at uni, not 17, and she assumes he’s a lot younger than he is.

“If Belle was my mate I’d tell her she was wasting her life but it must be hard for her to be in love.

“It’s certainly a change and it is odd to be doing scenes like that although I am enjoying it.

“I get on really well with Micah and it doesn’t feel awkward. But it’s strange having a film crew of about 40 people inspecting your kissing.

“It’s not really the sort of thing I want my dad watching. He texted me the other night to say it was really weird seeing me flirt. I was like, ‘Sorry!’”

And Eden says she is readying herself for public reaction to being “the other woman” in the show.

“Hopefully viewers will see that, awful as it is, they do think they’re in love.

“But I can imagine I’ll get a few ‘marriage wrecker’ comments thrown at me in the street.”

Eden says making the passion seem steamy hot is a necessary part of the realism, but things get a bit too hot this week when they knock over candles and spark a dangerous blaze.

Emmerdale, ITV, Mon – Fri, 7pm.


READ MORE

Being a mum is the most important job I will ever have, says Coronation Street star Samia Ghadie

Former Emmerdale star Sammy Winward relishes grittier role in ITV drama Prey