Zöe Lucker

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Zöe Lucker
Zöe Lucker at the Inside Soap Awards 2010
Born Zöe Elizabeth Lucker
(1974-04-11) 11 April 1974 (age 44)
Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, England
Occupation Actress
Years active 1996–present
Television Footballers' Wives (2002–2006)
EastEnders (2010–2011)
Holby Blue (2007–2008)
Waterloo Road (2013–2014)
Hollyoaks (2015–2016)
Strictly Come Dancing (2009)
Richard Forshaw
(m. 2001; div. 2001)
Partner(s) James Herbert (2007–present)
Children 1

Zöe Elizabeth Lucker[2] (born 11 April 1974[3][4] in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire) is an English actress. Her roles on television include Tanya Turner on ITV's Footballers' Wives, with a crossover appearance in Bad Girls, Vanessa Gold in EastEnders, Carol Barry in Waterloo Road and Reenie McQueen in Hollyoaks.


Lucker was educated at Huddersfield New College.[5] She studied acting at Oscars Academy of Performing Arts in Huddersfield, and later at the Manchester Arden School of Theatre.[citation needed] In 1996 she made her television debut in Brazen Hussies playing Busty Babs.[6] Later that year she appeared in three episodes of the long-running soap opera Coronation Street.[citation needed] In the next four years, she appeared on Doctors, Where the Heart Is, Barbara and Killer Net.[7]

Lucker got her big acting break when she got the part of WAG and super-bitch Tanya Turner on ITV's trashy drama Footballers' Wives, which made her a household name on British television.[citation needed] In 2004, she was nominated and won a TV Quick and TV Choice Award for 'Best Actress' for her role of Tanya Turner;[8] she was also nominated for a National Television Award in the category of 'Most Popular Actress'[9] for her work on Footballers' Wives and made an appearance in sister show, ITV's Bad Girls as her Footballers' Wives character.[10] The viewers halved when she left the show in series 4, cementing her status as being the most popular character and star of the show. She later came back in series 5 to star in the dramatic storylines alongside Joan Collins.[11]

From 2002 through to 2005, she made many appearances presenting GMTV in various locations all over the world including Africa and Cuba.[citation needed] In 2004, she co-hosted the British Academy Television Awards 2004, and guest presented on CD:UK in 2005.[citation needed] Her first main presenting work was on the Living home makeover show Love the Place You're In.[citation needed]

In 2005, Lucker toured New Zealand extensively in the play Then Comes Love as the female lead Jane opposite Shane Cortese[12] and played the lead role in Bombshell for ITV1, which is yet to be screened on British Television but has been broadcast in New Zealand[13] and sold to a number of other countries. She appeared in HolbyBlue for the BBC playing the character Kate Keenan.[14] However, due to low ratings during the second series the BBC decided to axe the program in August 2008.[15]

In 2009, Lucker appeared on Who Wants to Be a Millionaire alongside John Suchet, winning £150,000 for the Caron Keating Foundation[16]

In March 2010, Lucker joined the cast of EastEnders to play a character called Vanessa Gold, who was in a relationship with Max Branning, played by Jake Wood.[17] She left in October 2011.

In June 2012, Lucker joined the cast of Waterloo Road to play Carol Barry, the head of the crime family from Liverpool, alongside her three children Barry, Dynasty and Kacey played by Carl Au, Abby Mavers and Brogan Ellis respectively.[18]

In February 2015, Lucker joined the cast of Hollyoaks to play Reenie McQueen the youngest daughter of Nana McQueen (Diane Langton) and mother to Porsche (Twinnie Lee Moore), Celine (Sarah George) and Cleo McQueen (Nadine Rose Mulkerrin). Reenie has been billed as "good-time party girl without an 'off' switch and can be exhausting company although deep down she is the most vulnerable of Nana's children" and hasn't set the best example to her children and has let them down in the past.[19] She made her first appearance on 16 April 2015. It was later announced in December 2015 that Lucker would be leaving the role at the conclusion of the child sexual abuse storyline, with Reenie making her final appearance on 30 June 2016.

Lucker was a part of BBC history-reality series, 24 Hours in the Past, along with Colin Jackson, Alistair McGowan, Ann Widdecombe, Tyger Drew-Honey and Miquita Oliver. The four-part series was aired from 28 April until 19 May 2015.

Personal life[edit]

After announcing her engagement to long term boyfriend James Herbert in February 2008, Lucker announced she was pregnant in March 2008 with her first baby, which was due on 28 August 2008. She had a baby girl named Lilly Alabama Herbert on 2 September 2008, weighing 8 pounds 12 ounces (4.0 kg), five days after her due date.[20]

Lucker said meeting Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama, was one of the most influential moments in her life. She said he was "an extremely charismatic man, and his great presence could be felt the moment he walked into the room". Following the stress of filming Footballer's Wives, Lucker looked for ways to relax and bought a book written by the Dalai Lama The Art of Happiness. She made a pilgrimage to Dharamsala, in northern India to film the documentary A Date with the Dalai Lama for ITV2 with her Footballers' Wives co-star Sarah Barrand, and describes her meeting him as a life changing event: "When I first saw him my whole body just went into this weird state. We'd just trekked the Himalayas and there was this huge sea of people waiting to see him. Yet it was incredibly serene. Then he walked past us, about 3ft away, and waved. It's the first time I've ever been starstruck."[21]


Year Title Role Network Notes
1996 Coronation Street Sonia Leach ITV 2 episodes
1996 Brazen Hussies Busty Babs BBC Two Television film
1997 Where the Heart Is Jane ITV Series 1, episode 3: "Summoned by Bells"
1998 Killer Net Carol Channel 4 Mini-series; 3 episodes
1999 Boyz Unlimited Kirsty Bellamy Channel 4 Episode 5
1999 Barbara Karen ITV Series 1, episode 2: "Rivals"
2000 Doctors Sandy Hansen BBC One 1 episode
2000 Trial & Retribution Catrina Roberts ITV 2 episodes
2002 Holby City Sharon Simons BBC One Series 4, episode 46 "Pawns in the Game"
2002–2006 Footballers' Wives Tanya Turner ITV Main role; series 1–5 - 35 episodes
2004 Bad Girls Tanya Turner ITV Guest role; series 6 - 3 episodes
2006 Bombshell Jenna Marston ITV Main role; series 1 - 7 episodes
2007–2008 HolbyBlue Kate Keenan BBC One Main role; series 1–2 - 20 episodes
2009 Strictly Come Dancing Herself BBC One Series 7 contestant
2010–2011 EastEnders Vanessa Gold BBC One Regular role; 96 episodes
2013–2014 Waterloo Road Carol Barry BBC One Recurring role - series 8; regular role - series 9
2015 24 Hours in the Past Herself BBC One Historical reality television series
2015–2016 Hollyoaks Reenie McQueen Channel 4 Regular role; 63 episodes


Strictly Come Dancing performances[edit]

In September 2009, Lucker was announced as a contestant for series 7 of Strictly Come Dancing. Her former Footballers Wives co-star, Laila Rouass also participated in the series.[24] She was partnered up with professional ballroom dancer James Jordan. Despite earning high scores and having the third highest average, the couple were eliminated on 31 October, after being in a dance-off against Ali Bastian and her partner Brian Fortuna.[citation needed]

In November that year, it was confirmed that she would take part in the Strictly Come Dancing 2010 live tour at arenas across the UK.[25]

Week # Dance / Song Judges' score Result
Revel Horwood Goodman Dixon Tonioli
2 Waltz / "Some Day My Prince Will Come" 7 8 7 8 Safe
Rumba / "Out of Reach" 8 7 8 8
3 Paso Doble / "You've Got The Love" 7 8 8 8 Safe
4 Foxtrot / "This Will Be (An Everlasting Love)" 8 9 8 8 Safe
5 Jive / "Tainted Love" 7 8 8 7 Bottom two
6 American Smooth / "My Girl" 8 8 9 8 Safe
7 Samba / "Boogie Nights" 7 8 9 8 Eliminated


  1. ^ "TANYA'S TRANSFER; Footballers' Wives favourite bitch Zoe Lucker switches sides when she's jailed in the soccer soap and ends up behind bars in Bad Girls. - Free Online Library". 
  2. ^ England & Wales births 1837-2006
  3. ^ According to the State of London. London Birth Index, 1905–1995. Center for Health Statistics, London Department of Health Services, London. At Ancestry.com
  4. ^ "Zoe Lucker (profile)". Hello!. Retrieved 12 October 2009. 
  5. ^ "Huddersfield's Zoe Lucker set for EastEnders role". Huddersfield Examiner. 22 March 2010. 
  6. ^ "Brazen Hussies". 7 November 1998 – via IMDb. 
  7. ^ "Killer Net". 5 May 1998 – via IMDb. 
  8. ^ ""Footballers' Wives" (2002) - Awards". Uk.imdb.com. 1 May 2009. Retrieved 27 June 2013. 
  9. ^ "Zoe in TV award dream". Huddersfield Daily Examiner. 19 July 2004. Retrieved 3 December 2016. 
  10. ^ "Tanya Turner (Character)". 
  11. ^ "My Footballers' Wives diary, by Joan Collins". Daily Mail. London. 2 April 2006. 
  12. ^ "Then Comes Love at Founders Theatre". NZ Herald. 5 September 2005. Retrieved 2 December 2016. 
  13. ^ "Army drama lacks true trash power". NZ Herald. 3 May 2006. Retrieved 2 December 2016. 
  14. ^ "Holby Blue: Characters & Actors :Station Reception Officer Kate Keenan". BBC. Retrieved 2 December 2016. 
  15. ^ "Latest Holby Blue News & Gossip | What's on TV". Whatsontv.co.uk. Retrieved 27 June 2013. 
  16. ^ "John Suchet on Celebrity 'Who wants to be a Millionaire?'". Yorkshire & Humber Improvement Partnership. Archived from the original on 24 December 2012. Retrieved 2 February 2012. 
  17. ^ Green, Kris (20 March 2010). "Zoe Lucker joins 'EastEnders'". Digital Spy. Retrieved 20 March 2010. 
  18. ^ "Zoe Lucker joins the cast Waterloo Road". What's on TV. 25 June 2012. Retrieved 25 June 2012. 
  19. ^ Kilkelly, Daniel (6 February 2015). "Hollyoaks casts Zöe Lucker as newcomer Reenie McQueen". Digital Spy. Hearst Magazines UK. Retrieved 6 February 2015. 
  20. ^ "Zoe Lucker looks chic as she steps out with her favourite accessory... six-week-old daughter Lilly Alabama". London: Daily Mail. 13 October 2008. Retrieved 21 May 2009. 
  21. ^ Johnson, Angela (9 September 2006). "Dalai Lama cured my terrifying panic attacks, says Footballer's Wife Zoe". Daily Mail. Associated Newspapers. Archived from the original on 20 October 2006. Retrieved 25 April 2014. 
  22. ^ "Stars battle it out for TV awards". London: BBC. 26 October 2004. Retrieved 3 August 2014. 
  23. ^ "It's Zoe vs Nell". Huddersfield Daily Examiner. Huddersfield. 17 September 2004. Retrieved 3 August 2014. 
  24. ^ Chivers, Tom (18 September 2009). "Strictly Come Dancing 2009: the contestants". The Telegraph. London. Retrieved 2 February 2012. 
  25. ^ Douglas, Joanne (10 November 2009). "Lindley actress Zoe Lucker joins Strictly Come Dancing live tour". Huddersfield Daily Examiner. Retrieved 2 February 2012. 

External links[edit]