Inside The Repair Shop star Suzie Fletcher's home life: from abusive 18-year marriage to famous family

The Repair Shop's Suzie Fletcher
The Repair Shop's Suzie Fletcher (Ricochet Ltd/Ruth Roxanne Board/BBC)

Suzie Fletcher is a firm favourite on the BBC's beloved heirloom-fixing show, The Repair Shop. The saddlemaker is often praised by viewers for her incredible restoration skills, but how much do you know about her life away from the cameras?

Keep reading for all we know, including her abusive 18-year marriage to her famous family and home life in Oxfordshire…

Suzie Fletcher's parents and famous family

Suzie isn't the only famous face in her family. Her brother Steve also appears on the popular BBC show. In fact, it was Steve who inspired the saddlemaker to sign up for the programme.

"Every time [Steve] called he looked to be having such a good time I jokingly said, 'If they need anyone to do leather I'm your gal,'" Suzie told the BBC. "I really was joking but after several phone calls and a lot of reassurance from Steve I agreed to give it a go and joined the team [...] I'm so happy I did as this is one of the most enjoyable things I've ever been involved with it's also helped me through some very dark days."

Steve Fletcher and his sister Suzie Fletcher on The Repair Shop
Suzie's brother Steve is also an expert on The Repair Shop (Ricochet Ltd/Ruth Roxanne Board/BBC)

It's clear that the siblings have a very strong bond, with Suzie previously telling The Times that her brother has been her "my rock all my life". "Every step. I really didn't think I was confident enough to be on The Repair Shop, but I had the saving grace of Steve being there," she explained.

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Suzie also has a famous niece, Steve's daughter Amelia, who is a social media star with almost 9K followers on Instagram.

Both Steve and Suzie have their parents to thank for inspiring them in their careers, as their mum worked as a clothes designer and their dad as a watchmaker.

Steve Fletcher and Suzie Fletcher
Steve inspired Suzie to join the show (Guy Levy)

Suzie previously credited her parents for influencing her path in life. "I have been nuts about horses ever since I can remember and can vividly recall from a very young age making saddles and bridles for my rocking horse and Cindy horse," explained the TV star. "With the influence of my mother, who was very skilled in designing and making clothes and my father being a watch maker, it's no surprise I found a way to combine my interests in design and horses to become a saddle maker."

Suzie's 18-year marriage to late husband

Suzie has been very open about her complicated relationship with her late husband, Rob, in recent years. The restoration expert first met Rob in her mid-30s after moving to Boulder, Colorado.

Although she had initially intended to stay in the States for two years, Suzie ended up living there for 22 years.

While the pair quickly hit it off, with the relationship moving fast, Suzie soon began to pick up on Rob's controlling nature.

Suzie was married to her late husband Rob for 15 years
Suzie was married to her late husband Rob for 15 years (Guy Levy)

"He expected a great deal of submission from women. When I look back at the undermining tactics that he used, it was all based on his own insecurities," Suzie told The Times last year.

Speaking to the Mail on Sunday, Suzie described a time when Rob choked her and lifted her from the ground by her throat. "I honestly thought I was going to die," she revealed. "He was choking me and could easily have killed me. I don't know why but eventually he let go.

"I was profoundly shocked. I'd always thought it could never happen to me. Not that. He would never hurt me. Now I knew what my husband was capable of."

Suzie Fletcher gets to work in the new episode
Suzie spent 22 years living in the US (Ricochet)

As time went on, Rob's violent outbursts became less common. "I really felt that we were on a path to him learning how to manage the anger within him," she told The Times.

But in 2013, Rob passed away after being diagnosed with advanced pancreatic cancer. Four years later, Suzie moved back to the UK and joined The Repair Shop, which marked "the beginning of my own restoration".

Suzie's home life

When she's not busy restoring treasured items in The Repair Shop's West Sussex barn, Suzie repairs saddles, leather goods and solid leather furniture from her workshop in Oxfordshire, where her brother Steve also lives.

Suzie is also a published author, having released her first book, The Sun Over The Mountains, last year. The novel details some of the challenges she's faced in life, including her complicated marriage and her grief after Rob's death.