Who is Emmerdale's Ella Forster? All the theories about her past with 'villain dad' to secret relative

Ever since Emmerdale welcomed newcomer Ella Forster to the village earlier this year, fans at home have been adamant that something about the bubbly receptionist didn’t quite add up. In fact, in the months Ella has been resident in the village, she has revealed very little about her life before starting work at the GP surgery - leading many fans to suspect that she may have a secret dark past.

As regular viewers will know, Ella, played by former Coronation Street star Paula Lane, was first introduced back in January at a veterinary ball attended by Paddy Kirk and Mandy Dingle. While at the party, Ella’s boss cruelly and needlessly insulted Mandy, prompting Ella to take action and pour beer over his head - something which subsequently led to her being sacked on the spot.

Newcomer Ella Forster has sent fans into a frenzy as they try to rumble her mysterious past
Newcomer Ella Forster has sent fans into a frenzy as they try to rumble her mysterious past -Credit:ITV

Following the incident, Ella was later offered a job at the local GP surgery, where she began to pursue Dr. Liam Cavanagh romantically - even despite his clear interest in Chastity Dingle, who Ella appeared to want to get out of the picture. Now, four months on since her arrival, fans at home have been sharing their theories about what secret Ella may be hiding, including several possible links to former village residents.

Here, we take a closer look at the most popular theories so far….

Villain Dad

One popular theory among fans is that Ella shares a connection with Tom King, who is currently terrorising his new bride Belle in a devastating coercive control storyline. In particular, many viewers have theorised that Ella could be a fake alias for Tom’s sister Anya, which would make her the daughter of the villainous Carl King who terrorised much of the village and attempted to rape Chas Dingle.

In addition to explaining Ella’s return to the village, it would also give a motive for her continued coldness and indifference towards Chas, as she may be blaming her for the events that lead to her father’s death.

Sadly however, as brilliant as the theory is on paper, it wouldn’t explain why Jimmy King didn’t recognise Ella, as he would surely have recognised his own niece, if she were truly Anya.

Secret Relative

A possible connection to Graham Foster has also been floated by several fans
Some fans believe Ella may be the daughter of Carl King - a connection would make her the sister of current villain Tom King.

Another theory currently gaining traction among viewers is a potential connection to Kim Tate’s former love interest Graham Foster, who was infamously ‘killed’ by Pierce Harris back in 2020. Initially many fans thought the pair could be connected due to their similar surnames - with several even speculating that Graham could still be alive, as we never actually saw his body on screen.

One fan wrote: ”People saying Ella is Tom King’s sister… well wouldn’t Jimmy recognise his own niece if it was? Before she joined I thought she was connected to Graham (Kim’s ex) but their surnames are slightly different as hers is Forster and his was Foster."

Another viewer also agreed as they theorised that Graham may not be dead after all: "Ella and Graham NEARLY sharing a surname is too weird to be a coincidence in Emmerdale, surely... what if she's related to him and he's not really dead? We never saw the body."

Serial killer link

A number of 'clues' have hinted at a possible Meena Jutla connection
A possible connection to Graham Foster has also been floated by several fans -Credit:ITV

Since the early days of her arrival, many fans have been suspicious that Ella may have connections to serial killer Meena Jutla, particularly given the company she keeps and the lines of questioning she has been pursuing, most notably grilling Dawn and Billy Fletcher about their own kidnap at the hands of Meena, following Belle Dingle and Tom King’s disastrous wedding.

Further speculation also followed when Ella became deliberately cagey around Liam Cavanagh (whose own daughter Leanna was murdered by Meena) when he began to ask her simple questions about her friends and family in an attempt to get to know his new girlfriend. It was during a curt answer, that Ella revealed she had an old friend who suggested that she become a nurse.

This soon began to ring alarm bells with fans, as many viewers will remember Meena previously worked as a nurse at the surgery alongside Liam and her own sister Manpreet for a number of years while embarking on a brutal murder spree throughout the village.

“Ella’s “best friend” is obviously Meena Jutla, serial killer. She either knows who Liam is and blames him for Meena, she’s out to target Manpreet because she blames her too, or she isn’t and it’s a massive coincidence.My money is on she does know and out for vengeance,” wrote one fan.

A second theorised: “Ella’s giving me all kinds of vibes… I’m sure she’s been sent by Meena to spy/cause trouble. My current theory is she’s related to someone who’s in prison with Meena but we’ll see! Maybe she just knows Meena from the past…”

Long lost Dingle

Ella could be Charity Dingle's long lost sister, according to several long-time fans
A number of 'clues' have hinted at a possible Meena Jutla connection -Credit:ITV

When it comes to the Dingle family, it’s safe to say stranger things have happened than an unexpected child crawling out of the woodwork. In fact, the soap already addressed this very subject back in December 2022 with the introduction of Caleb Milligan, Cain and Chas Dingle’s half brother.

Yet according to fans there could be yet another addition to the family already living in Emmerdale, as several fans believe Ella could actually be the daughter of Kathleen Dingle - Charity Dingle’s mother.

"Paula Lane’s great!", one viewer penned online. ”I’m excited she’s joined Emmerdale! I pitch Ella should forget Liam & hook up with (Vanessa) instead & then we’ll find out she’s Kathleen Dingle’s long lost daughter as (Kathleen) didn’t really die & Charity will have to deal with V having a hot new girlfriend who is also (her) sister!”

Long-term viewers may recall that Kathleen is said to have died when Charity was still young, with her father Obadiah telling the young Dingle that her mother had died of cancer, when in truth she ended her own life.

Could Ella aid Charity in overcoming her PTSD if the connection is proven to be true?

Emmerdale continues weeknights at 7:30pm on ITV and ITVX